Hopscotch takes place in Raleigh, North Carolina in early September. It is the biggest festival in the Southeast for sure, with headliners like St. Vincent, The War On Drugs, De La Soul, & Thurston Moore. There are so many venues in Raleigh that there is a good range of the established & emerging artists to suit every taste. Here we have some bands we won’t miss (if we can help it!) arranged by vibe, for your convenience!
The Range – Ambient synthy beats with smooth drum & bass. What we’ve heard so far is pretty chill, so we’re certainly looking forward to see how producer James Hinton delivers this mid-tempo electronic set live!
NGUZUNGUZU – We are SO EXCITED to see this dj duo. Unusual samples, heavy beats, & a brown girl megababe on the tables have us pumped for a late night dance-sesh!
photo credit Loren Wohl
Prince Rama – Not to boast, but we had the pleasure of seeing this sister band in Miami with another favorite, Chromatics (one check off the bucket list)! Taraka supplies other worldly vocals, with Nimai on the drums, & dreamlike visuals & wardrobe that border on performance art make for a spiritual experience demonstrative of their background in ashrams.
Mas Ysa – Thomas Arsenault, a multidisciplinary Canadian artist, supplies warbley vocals atop super fun synth-pop beats. He reminds us of a bit Future Islands, but makes you work harder for the very crucial dance party intervals. Rispek.
Dent May – Summery, sweet-twee vocals over kaleidoscopic instrumentation. This takes us down a rabbit hole of rainbows & candy.
Mapei – Soulful, awesome pop. There is a definite, well-deserved buzz around this Swedish singer/rapper! Also, maaajor hair envy here.
Marley Carroll – A fellow Carolinian & apparent electronic DJ veteran, Carroll delivers fine-tuned vocals over refreshingly irregular rhythms that are still totally groove-worthy. NPR appropriately dubbed his musical style as ‘subdued glitch-pop’.
Sun Araw – Rhythmic, experimental ‘woozy psych-dub’, in the words of Marc Masters. Their hypnotizing sounds & bare vocals feel evocative of a long, trippy desert drive; perfect for an indie film score.
PUNK / ROCK
White Lung – Canadian feminist punk? Yes, please. This fast as fuck female-dominated four piece carries on the riot grrrl legacy with classic 1980’s hardcore riffs.
Diarrhea Planet – Punk po(o)p hooks & serious guitar shredding from these Nashville boys are sure to be a jam-good time! Eh? Anyone?
Death – A resurrected proto-punk band circa 1971 reunites after 3 decades; sure to be an epic experience to write home about.
Ed Shrader’s Music Beat – This will be our third Ed Shrader experience, & we assure you this is not an act to miss. This playful ‘drum & bass’ two piece will have you ROFL with their banter by the end of their set. With vocals that range from Elton John octaves to Joy Divison, drumming on an illuminated floor tom, & deceptively full bass riffs – they’re probably also the coolest dudes you’ll ever encounter, & we have a big ol’ lady boner for them😍
Jacuzzi Boys – Slightly more refined garage rock from Miami, these boys know how to party. Also, killer merch that is coming home with us to keep us warm all winter!
Y’all – Joyous day! Members of two of our favorite Southeastern bands, Invisible Hand & Naked Gods, join to create an impossible band to Google. So we guess you just have to see them live (or just listen to their soundcloud here).
Circuit Des Yeux – Haley Fohr’s deep, powerful vocals (many compare her to Nico) backed by shadowy guitar & strings make for an epic, operatic experience. You can find us fan-girling at her merch table.
Zack Mexico – North Carolina locals, these boys’ suave vocals & surf rock riffs have got us daydreaming of sprawling out on a Mexican blanket while stargazing amongst the Joshua trees.
Ryley Walker – Retro folk rock, reminiscent of José González meets Sun Kil Moon (also playing at Hopscotch!) The Line Of Best Fit describes his album All Kinds Of You as a ‘Freewheelin’ Bob Dylan-flavored slushy;’ possibly the most apt reference we’ve heard to date.
We have to note that we are crying ourselves to sleep over Eagulls‘ cancellation, & hope to see them in the states soon! On another note, we’re really pumped to ‘gram the shit out of this festival, & hope to see some friendly faces! xo!