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Kurt Vile performed at Auditorium Shores the day after a bag of his equipment was stolen. Shantel Mitchell for NPR hide caption

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SXSW Music Festival

Kurt Vile, Live In Concert: SXSW 2011

Kurt Vile possesses a warm grasp of both classic rock sounds and modern form. His lo-fi roots are reflected in new studio recordings that somehow feel both primitive and polished.

Kurt Vile, Live In Concert: SXSW 2011

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Joy-Formidable performs live at the Parish in Austin, Texas. Shantel Mitchell/Flickr hide caption

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Front Row

The Joy Formidable

A Welsh pop trio based in London, The Joy Formidable plays spiky, bouncy rock that benefits immeasurably from the charisma of frontwoman Ritzy Bryan.

Colin Stetson performs at the Parish in Austin, Texas. Katie Hayes Luke for NPR hide caption

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SXSW Music Festival

Colin Stetson, Live In Concert: SXSW 2011

As a solo artist, saxophonist and prolific sideman Colin Stetson creates vivid, enveloping, challenging, seemingly free-form soundscapes.

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Tiny Desk

Steve Riley And The Mamou Playboys

Steve Riley and his Mamou Playboys make sweet Cajun music together: music steeped in the French heritage of southwestern Louisiana and driven by accordion and fiddle. Watch the Grammy-nominated Cajun band play an upbeat yet bittersweet set from the NPR Music offices.

Abby Verbosky/NPR

Tiny Desk

Damien Jurado

Jurado has spent the last decade churning out albums of raw, time-worn, authentically graceful music, and he's always possessed a seemingly innate gift for capturing the intricacies of human behavior. Watch him perform his songs in the NPR Music office.

Abby Verbosky/NPR

Tiny Desk

Local Natives

The L.A.-based indie-rock band plays buoyant, infectious songs that brim with sunny melodies and three-part vocal harmonies.