The beloved local festival Noise Pop just made its 4th announcement of acts it will be hosting February 17-27th — including 50+ Bay Area bands. Known for bringing both huge names in indie music and highlighting great local bands, this year – the festival’s 25th happening all across the city – is going to be one for the books.
The full line up (so far) is here, but first … of the 50+ here are ten local bands we think you shouldn’t miss at this year’s festival:
Hazel English – Tuesday 2/21 @ Rickshaw Stop — Dreamy does not begin to describe this indie band, whose releases this year built beautifully upon the gems of the past such as “Never Going Home”
“Never Going Home” – Hazel English
Shannon & The Clams – Monday 2/27 @ the Fox — Never a dull moment with this staple local scene band, who sits somewhere between Wanda Jackson and a raucous early Rolling Stones
“Rip Van Winkle” – Shannon & the Clams
The Y Axes – Friday 2/24 @ Great American Music Hall — Putting out a new album in 2016, The Y Axes established themselves as a futuristic pop band to be reckoned with.
“Meteorite” – The Y Axes
DONCAT – Wednesday 2/22 @ Swedish American Music Hall — An ethereal singer-songwriter – in the vein of Mark Kozalek / Sun Kil Moon – gets full band treatment with a gorgeous result that leans both to late 60’s folk and contemporary indie rock
“Close Hand” – DONCAT
“Bid for Power” – Cave Clove
Rogue Wave – Friday 2/24 @ Rickshaw Stop — After several years dormant, this well-established band returned in 2016 with Delusions of Grand Fur which Pop Matters said “manages to balance clear folk influences with gawking explorations of electronica”
“California Bride” – Rogue Wave
Before the Brave – Friday 2/24 @ Bottom of the Hill — This band* is a fantastic voice in the folk rock scene and not to be missed, with well-developed songs and gorgeous harmonies
“Free” – Before the Brave
Madeline Kenney – Wednesday 2/22 @ Swedish American Music Hall — New to me, this songwriter has an incredible ability to weave vulnerability and musicality. Her dreamy pop EP Signals is well worth your listen
“Signals” – Madeline Kenney
Two Sheds – Sunday 2/26 @ Bottom of the Hill — Another that isn’t actually from the Bay (they apparently moved to LA in 2012) – but they formed here so we’ll give them a pass. Two Sheds hasn’t put any new music out in a couple years but front woman Caitlin’s voice is undeniably beautiful and emotive – her songs like poems that emanate from a sunny California afternoon that carries its own kind of melancholy
“Come Home” – Two Sheds
Hot Flash Heat Wave – Thursday 2/23 @ Bottom of the Hill — No festival in the Bay Area would be complete without some surf rock and few do it better round here than Hot Flash Heat Wave
“Gutter Girl” – Hot Flash Heat Wave
*An earlier version of this article incorrectly stated that Before the Brave was from Sacramento. The band hails from multiple parts of the Bay Area, and is solidly a Bay Area band.