Austin City Limits preview: Festival won’t be supergay this year, but it’s still worth the trip

Posted on 08 Oct 2010 at 3:39pm

If you’re venturing down for this year’s ACL fest, chances are you’ve mentally prepared for a lack of personal space over the next two days. The weather will eventually get too hot, the treks too long and there’s bound to be mud somewhere. And that makes the music fest all the more glorious.

The roster of players is always impressive with at least one band that should appeal to the finickiest of music lovers. But I got a little curious as to finding the gay angle to ACL, which really is just seeing who’s playing that also plays on the LGBT side of the fence. Plus, I hope you won’t mind just a couple of non-gay recommendations along the way.

Friday night — If you missed them Wednesday night, Vampire Weekend, below,  plays at 7 p.m. on the ZYNC Card stage. I feel like I’ve pointed to gay member Rostam Batmanglij a lot this past week, but really, the band’s live show has a reputation of greatness. I wouldn’t know. Although The Strokes don’t have any confirmed gay members, there was that gay porn incident.They play at 8 p.m. on the AMD stage.

Saturday — What’s up with all the bears in rock music lately? Bear in Heaven, below, isn’t really very bearish, but I’d recommend their sorta psychedelic pop. They perform at 1:30 p.m. on the ZYNC Card stage. The xx isn’t a porn rating at ACL, it’s the name of one of the bigger buzz bands of the moment. With good reason. It’s hard to put this any other way: Their sophisticated Brit new wave is the shit. Forget the dancey ’80s type of new wave, this is sexy stuff.

Saturday night is the night with The Temper Trap, Muse, Gogol Bordello and M.I.A. all performing, but I’ll select the must-see as LCD Soundsystem. Seriously, I would have, like, 10,000 of his babies because James Murphy, below, the man behind LCDS, is quite possibly the coolest guy on earth who has been making some of the more innovative pop music of the past decade. He plays the Budweiser stage at 6:30 p.m. With all the greatness playing tomorrow night, there isn’t much that reps the LGBT side. However, Ozomatli plays at the Clear 4G stage at 7 p.m. They released “Gay Vatos in Love” this year causing a stir with the pro-gay tune from a Latino perspective.

Sunday — Where Saturday’s lineup seems to fit all together, Sunday’s is a bit all over the place. This is a good thing, but again, not much gay. The band Gayngs isn’t at all but they could be a fascinating watch. They are like the Polyphonic Spree of rock with over 20 members onstage at times. Do see The National on the Honda stage at 7 p.m. At the risk of objectifying their brilliant smoky folk, which should be the soundtrack to Jim Jarmusch/David Lynch mashups, singer Matt Berninger’s baritone is one of the sexiest things to ever be recorded. Hey, just sayin’.

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