Back for a third time around, Oaktopia continues to impress. After last years addition of a second day, this years fest adds a third and strikes a wonderful balance of big name national acts, and smaller local artists. The fest takes place this weekend, and is already looking to be a huge success. We’re given y’all our short list of must see acts this weekend.
Konklin // Friday, 10:00-10:40 @ Rubber Gloves Rehearsal Studio
Denton punk rock band, Konklin knows how to bring the party to the suburbs. It’s actually their specialty. If they’re not busy cross dressing and getting the crowd pumped at sweaty, stinky, bloody house shows, they’re off probably hanging out on Denton rooftops – and if there’s any underrated local act going on this weekend in Denton, it’s this one.
Blue, The Misfit // Friday, 11:20-11:50 @ Hailey’s Club
As an artist & producer for Kendrick Lamar, Schoolboy Q, Mac Miller, Ab-Soul & more, Blue The Misfit’s music is an experiment of dark sounds with bold beats. The Denton-based rapper has become a major part of the DFW hip-hop scene. His debut album, “Child In The Wild”, won Best Album and the 2014 Dallas Observer Music Awards. Poised the be the next breakout artist out of North Texas, Blue will definitely have one of the most exciting sets of the night.
Father // Friday, 12:00-1:00 @ Hailey’s Club
Atlanta’s melting pot has birthed its own cast of characters in hip-hop. From the likes of Young Thug, Rich Homie Quan, iLoveMakonnen, and more, Hotlanta has infiltrated the airwaves and SoundClouds with its distinct trap music, and now, Father. The 24-year-old, Mississippi-born artist is already running his own indie label, Awful Records, and has a record that is slowly creeping into the hearts and minds of rap fans everywhere. Father is cultivating sounds for every artist under his imprint, and most notably his own. His style is bouncy and melodic, peculiar and druggy; he rarely uses samples, and his flow is effortless. His raps about drugs and girls float over smooth, head-nodding production from himself and in-house producers KCSB and Ethereal.
Mineral // Sunday, 5:30-6:30 @ Audacity Brew House Main Stage
When you think of the emo/slowcore scene in the 90’s, chances are, Mineral will come to mind. Forming in 1994, the Austin based band toured heavily before releasing their LP “The Power of Failing” on crank! in ‘97, as well as their second LP “EndSerenading”. The band broke up shortly after recording “EndSerenading” and its members went on to form acts such as The Gloria Record, Zookeeper, etc. But with the recent re-discovering of 90’s emo, Mineral was able to rise from its temporary grave in 2014 and revisit the songs that until then, had been unsung. Truly, the etherial and melodically guitar-heavy emo sounds that we love so much will be keeping the dream of the 90’s alive in Denton.
Thundercat // Saturday, 6:00-7:00 @ Travelstead Main Stage
Bassist/songwriter/vocalist Stephen Bruner, aka Thundercat, has music deeply rooted within. His father, Ronald Bruner, Sr., is an internationally renowned jazz drummer who played with the Temptations, Diana Ross, Gary Bartz and Gladys Knight. As Thundercat, Bruner takes his jazz roots and works with a mix of artists that suit his wildly experimental sensibilities – ranging from Flying Lotus, Erykah Badu, and Stanley Clarke, as well as more recent collaborations with Wiz Khalifa and Earl Sweatshirt, to name but a few.
MINUS THE BEAR // Saturday, 9:00-10:00 @ Audacity Brew House Main Stage
Experimental rock group from Seattle, Minus the Bear, is a happy marriage of a lighthearted and spirited band with a very tight and sophisticated sound. While the band keeps a sense of humor by nature, their instrumentalshave been descried as pele-esque, sporting complicated time signatures and technical instrumentals – a combination that has served the band well four LP’s and 14 years later. The band’s name is actually an inside joke that started when a friend of the band went on a date “and one of us asked him afterwards how the date went. Our friend said, ‘You know that TV show from the ’70s, B.J. and the Bear? It was like that… minus the Bear…’” (spin magazine).
Bayonne // Friday, 10:00-11:00 @ Harvest House
Bayonne, formerly known as Roger Sellers, is a multi instrumentalist based in Austin. His sound is a musical grab bag that tends to defy categorization. Some tracks feature moody piano and synths, while others play around with twangy banjos and bright glockenspiel. The variety is refreshing and Sellers’ skillful layering of these seemingly disparate elements is hugely impressive. He switches between mixing, singing, and drumming onstage, and his show Friday night is going to be one to check out.
Shlohmo // Saturday, 10:00-11:00 @ Travelstead Main Stage
Henry Laufer, stage name Shlohmo, is an electronic musician and producer out of Los Angeles. He seamlessly blends a lo-fi ambient sound with heavy hip-hop influence, resulting in a refined, atmospheric body of work. Recent output from him includes production on Banks’ debut album and a collaborative EP with R&B singer Jeremih. This year’s Dark Red, as the name suggests, was a more gloomy undertaking inspired by Laufer’s own experiences with personal loss and full of mellowed out beats. His set will serve as a nice way to round off Saturday evening.
Sarah Jaffe // Sunday, 6:30-7:30 @ Travelstead Main Stage
Denton local Sarah Jaffe is one in the long line of many to break out of the North Texas bubble. She has carried the singer-songwriter sensibilities of her early days into a more electronic influenced sound and the shift has paid off. Her rich lyricism plays off of both her uptempo, electro-pop jams and her melancholy, downtempo tunes to beautiful results. Her main stage slot on Sunday evening is sure to be one of the festival’s highlights.