Kanye West, Interpol and Mumford & Sons are just a few of the must-see acts appearing at Coachella this year. But there are tons of lesser-known artists that are worth the trip to Indio, Calif.
With the festival just five days away, we decided to highlight some of the smaller names on the bill, because we know how important it is to read the fine print. Here are 25 “small print” acts that deserve must-see status.
1.The Joy Formidable
Fun, fierce and energized rock led by vocalist Ritzy Bryan, this London trio has been compared to Arcade Fire, Editors and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Not a set to miss, they’ll be sure to have the crowd dancing along.
2. Trampled by Turtles
We caught a glimpse of this band at SXSW and would gladly go back for more. Sweet, strumming banjo, and a dancing fiddle are just a piece of this five-part band. Bass, guitar and mandolin help to make this toe-tapping Bluegrass experience complete.
3. City and Colour
This Canadian singer/songwriter sings straight to your soul with an understated beauty. Prepping to release his third studio album this summer, he’s definitely an act to check out.
4. Rural Alberta Advantage
These Canadians will change your mind about folk music with strong, bellowing anthems guaranteed to sweep you up and carry you away.
5. Freelance Whales
We’ve been following this Brooklyn band for some time now, and it never fails to delight us. Their multi-layered music is full of fun surprises for every ear.
6. Angus and Julia Stone
This Australian brother/sister duo play compelling soothing lullaby-like tunes, sure to bring peace in the hectic festival atmosphere. Don’t be mistaken, their captivating voices won’t put you asleep—you’ll be too busy enjoying the vacation their music’s provided.
7. The Pains of Being Pure at Heart
A Brooklyn quintet that delivers a beautiful blend of melodic rock. The band recently released its second album, Belong.
Matthew Houck is an extremely talented multi-instrumentalist and vocalist. He and his crew create unforgettable melodies that stay with you long after the performance is done.
9. Delta Spirit
These American rockers played our SXSW showcase in 2010 and were a joy to listen to. Recommended for anyone who likes Americana, rock or just good music.
If you’re looking for something new, Phantogram might be it. This electronica duo creates an mesmerizing blend of synth beats with hip-hop influences.
11. Cold Cave
It’s pop, electronica and rock. Mix it all together and you get a delightfully modern nod to the ‘80s with just enough sugar to be sweet without giving you a toothache.
Ready to rock? Then check out this rebellious New Jersey punk band and prepare to be captured by the power of its prose.
13. Mount Kimbie
Another SXSW find, this dubstep artist has us giving the genre another chance. His music is like a maze; you don’t really know where it is going but you will enjoy trying to figure it out.
14. Cage the Elephant
The perfect mixture of twang, rock and catchy lyrics make this a band to see—and sing along with.
15. Rye Rye
M.I.A.’s protégé brings a sound similar to her mentor, while expertly mixing her own particular blend of rap, hip-hop, pop and electronica.