Every September, Champaign-Urbana is proud to host the Pygmallion Music Festival!  This festival is great in really showcasing all C-U has to offer, and brings many big national names and local acts to different venues across town.  You might be saying: “Wow, Boswell, it’s only July…don’t you think you’re jumping the gun a little bit?”.  And to that, I would say that yes, I am, but I’m just too damn excited!

1. ”Echo Hands” — The Dirty Feathers:

I don’t mean to knock the quality of local music, because honestly, it is really quite great.  This song just sounds like it should belong to a higher profile band than The Dirty Feathers, though.  It’s really showing them flexing their muscles and the possibility that they have to blow up in the near future!

Listen Here:

2. “Evening’s Kiss” — Willis Earl Beal

I know that Maddie included this guy in her tape last week, but I just had to do it again.  His story is truly remarkable.  He spent the years before he got famous working low-level jobs and even spending some time without a home, yet he still got discovered!  Fresh off of Pitchfork Music Fest up in Chicago, this guy is an artist I’m really excited about.

Listen Here:

3. “Two Weeks” — Grizzly Bear

Yes, this is their most popular song.  Yes, they are releasing a new album.  Yes, I am immensely excited for it.  Yes, their band name scares me a little bit.  That’s about all I have to say about t.

Listen Here:

4. “B**** Look At Me Now” — Childish Gambino

Before I confuse people: NO, CHILDISH GAMBINO WILL NOT BE AT PYGMALION FEST.  But this song samples Grizzly Bear, and is altogether one of my famous Gambino raps.  I think you’ll like it, too.

Listen Here:

5. “Last Year” — Best Coast

“What a day this year has been, what a year this day has been”

These lyrics seem to be so applicable to college, where the years seem to fly by so fast!  I can’t wait to see these guys and all of their California glory.

Listen Here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LeI_7BcERDw

6. “Wasted Days” — Cloud Nothings

It’s impossible to listen to the intro to this song and not get completely stoked to listen to the rest of it.  The lead singer sounds a little like Billy Corgan, but that’s nothing to hold against a man.  These guys just played Pitchfork, too, and they look to rock C-U in September.

Listen Here:

7. “Life Inside An Elephant” — Elsinore

Elsinore are somewhat like local celebrities around here, and they always put on a great show.  Frontman Ryan Graff is possibly the nicest front-man in the history of music.  This track is off of their Life Inside An Elephant EP, but also look for them to drop a new album sometime soon, as I hear it is in the process of being made!  Check out our latest interview with Elsinore HERE!

Listen Here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eUfydEDRTi0

8. “Stillness Is The Move” — Dirty Projectors

I’ll be honest with you, it was really hard for me to come around on Dirty Projectors.  I would definitely call it an acquired taste, but after I acquired it, I loved it!  Hopefully this song is enough to sway you, but if it’s not, check Bitte Orca, which is a great album.

Listen Here:

9. “Comeback Kid” — Sleigh Bells

Sleigh Bells goes hard.  It’ll be interesting to see how they translate that to a live performance.  Did I mention that Sleigh Bells goes hard?

Listen Here:

10. “Marathon” — Tennis:

I had the pleasure of catching this band in Amsterdam when I was backpacking across Europe.  Their style reminds me of She & Him, but even more relaxed than the M. Ward Zooey combo.  This is the show that I expect to surprise me the most (weird to expect a surprise, right?).

Listen Here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LsbXcJT8yfE

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