It's been an interesting year for music festivals in North Texas. "Interesting" as in a year of transition, although for the most part a year of growth. While Spune put its Index Fest on hiatus until 2016, it rolled out the first-ever Reunion Fest and moved its marquee Untapped Fest from the Gilley's Complex to Fair Park. Up in Denton, meanwhile, Oaktopia celebrated its third year by picking up the best festival honors at this year's Dallas Observer Music Awards — going head-to-head for the first time with returning neighbor 35 Denton.
2015 is basically old news at this point, so 35 Denton has gotten the ball rolling on next year's festival season, revealing the first batch of artists slated to perform when the event returns in March. If that one-year hiatus had resulted in a smaller lineup this year, then it looks like 2016 is off to a promising start for the fest formerly known as NX35, 35 Confederate and by about a dozen other names.
Leading the way in an announcement video that's at once cute and surreal (animal heads, anyone?) is Eliot Sumner, the U.K. electro-pop singer and daughter of former Police frontman and renowned Tantric sex practitioner, Sting. (Her upbeat song, "After Dark," which could almost be mistaken for a Sarah Jaffe B-side, is the soundtrack for the video.) Joining at the top of today's announcement is Houston rapper Fat Tony, suggesting that this year's 35 Denton could be an eclectic mix (something we're happy to endorse).
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More (and bigger) announcements are promised to be on the way in the following months, but behind those two there's plenty of local talent, including DOMA nominees Pearl Earl and Daniel Markham as well as first-time DOMA winner (for best pop act) Jessie Frye. The festival takes place from Friday to Sunday, March 11 to 13. Tickets are on sale now at 35denton.com.
Here's the full list of bands announced today:
Eliot Sumner (London, UK)
Fat Tony (Houston, TX)
Tacocat (Seattle, WA)
White Reaper (Louisville, KY)
Sheer Mag (Philadelphia, PA)
Purple (Beaumont, TX)
Brothertiger (Brooklyn, NY)
What Moon Things (Brooklyn, NY)
Dixie Witch (Denton, TX)
Mothers (Athens, GA)
Mydolls (Houston, TX)
Well Hung Heart (Orange, CA)
The Birds of Night (Denton, TX)
Jessie Frye (Denton, TX)
Shiny Around the Edges (Denton, TX)
Daniel Markham (Denton, TX)
Pearl Earl (Denton, TX)
Bad Beats (Denton, TX)
GOLDENJOY (Denton, TX)
Hella Zealous (Denton, TX)
Wiving (Portland, OR)
*~~ (Denton, TX)