Sofar Sounds does not just organize secret showcases all around the world — they also share help bring new artists into the spotlight. In Austin alone, music lovers can expect four to five shows a month. For the indie music lover struggling to find new tunes, The Daily Texan has compiled a list of bands that are surfacing with the help of Sofar Sounds.
Born and raised in the Hudson River Valley of New York, indie-folk singer Aubrey Haddard is dominating the northeast with her rock and soul attitude. Playing the General Assembly in Washington, D.C., with Sofar Sounds and bars all throughout Boston. Haddard, along with bandmates Charley Ruddell and Joshua Strmic, combine alt-rock with a perfect touch of soul. The trio released their first full-length studio album Blue Part in July 2018. Blue Part is a concept album that revolves around love, passion and relationships.
Jackie Venson is an Austin native. For those who need it, Venson is a dynamic solo artist who fearlessly experiments with a variety of sounds and styles while setting a new bar for modern artists. She entered the world stage in 2016 when she backed Mac Miller and Anderson Paak on “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.” Originally trained as a classical pianist, she made a transition musically after graduating from the Berklee College of Music. Venson is an exceptionally skilled guitarist with soul, rock and pop influences. She will be playing ACL on Oct. 6.
Austin is musically inclined, but most of the time, local musicians are overshadowed by whichever hipster band you listened to in middle school. Singer and songwriter Julian Acosta brings a unique presence to the stage — that means he is barefoot. Originally from Querétaro, Mexico, Acosta debuted in 2014 with the song “This Town,” eventually adding it to his first EP High Five in 2018. At a recent Sofar gig in Austin, Acosta left the crowd speechless when he sang a Spanish ballad called “Blanca Flor.” Keep an eye out for that one, but until then, you can listen to his music on his website.
The Chicago-based soul-rock-Americana band came together through a series of Craigslist ads created by singer and songwriter Aaron Lechlak in 2014. The band quickly grew from a solo based project to the perfect harmonic foursome. Wild Skies combines the vocals of professionally trained opera singer Kristine Sorum-Williams, jazz bassist Tommy Good and folk drummer Andy Kearns. The four combined carefully curated harmonies with an acoustic backbone to make the eight-song LP From Far Below, one of the band’s latest albums.
The London-based singer-songwriter is a multi-instrumentalist solo artist who has performed at Sofar Sounds gigs in London, Milan, Los Angeles and Liverpool. She is slowly encroaching on an international stage with her sweet and soulful voice. Betts’ “The Stars Look Down” combines her delicate vocals with perfectly backed keyboard playing, reminiscent of Russian-born singer Regina Spektor.
This indie pop band from New York City consists of vocalist Jessica Carvo and instrumentalist Alex Marko. The two originally pursued solo careers but became an unstoppable duo after meeting in a songwriting class. With a strong alternative rock influence, Satellite Mode released Wild Excuses, their first studio album in 2017, and most recently, released a single titled “Gave It All,” where the two created truly motivating and emotionally charging music that reflected on their own personal lives.