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New York Bands Take Over Austin for SXSW Festival

It's Spring Break for the New York music scene. The South by Southwest Music Festival kicks off on Tuesday evening, bringing musicians and industry professionals from around the country to Austin, Texas for a week of showcases, meetings and elbow-rubbing. The festival has long served as a way of connecting up-and-coming bands to labels, booking agents and journalists.

As always, bands from New York City are playing a big part.

"Sometimes I get the sense that every important rock band today is from Brooklyn," said Jim Fusilli, a rock critic for The Wall Street Journal. "I imagine that Williamsburg is about half-empty right now."

Fusili added: "New York has always been a central place for popular music, but what's happening now in Brooklyn is really unprecedented."

Of the 2,000 plus bands performing at the festival this year, a whopping 225 are from New York. That number does not include the many bands that play unofficial showcases in Austin throughout the week.

Tuesday night's kick off will feature concerts on 10 stages. The performances run through March 20.

Click below to get free downloads from bands performing at SXSW 2011 that WNYC has featured as part of its Gig Alerts series.

NYC bands performing at 2011 SXSW


A Place to Bury Strangers




Ava Luna      

Beach Fossils

Bear Hands


Charles Bradley

Class Actress

Computer Magic

Darwin Deez

Das Racist

Dinosaur Feathers

Elizabeth & the Catapult


Fang Island

Freedy Johnston


Home Video

Homeboy Sandman

Hooray for Earth

Immortal Technique


JM Airis


Lia Ices

Marco Benevento




Parts & Labor


Prince Rama


Robbers On High Street

Savoir Adore

Sharon Van Etten

Sleigh Bells

Small Black

Takka Takka

The Antlers

The Felice Brothers

The Ghost Of A Saber Tooth Tiger

The Spring Standards

The Sway Machinery

Twin Shadow



Warm Ghost

Xenia Rubinos

Yellow Ostrich