SXSW 2016 Music Preview : All Songs Considered All Songs Considered hosts Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton are joined by Stephen Thompson and NPR's Music Saidah Blount for a look at a handful of bands we can't wait to see at SXSW this week.

SXSW 2016 Music Preview

SXSW 2016 Music Preview

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Clockwise from upper left: Dirty Dishes, The Overcoats, Gallant, Billie Marten, KAO=S Courtesy of the artists hide caption

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It's that time of year again! This week is March Madness for music lovers: South By Southwest. The annual music festival in Austin, Texas is a treasure trove of exciting new music to enjoy and brilliant artists to discover. For this week's All Songs Considered, our hosts Bob Boilen and Robin Hilton are joined by NPR Music's Stephen Thompson and Saidah Blount to talk about which bands they are most excited to see for the very first time at SXSW this year.

They listened to around 1800 songs by bands performing in the multi-day music spree and whittled the list down to 17 for this week's show, including the annual "Secret SX Santa" round, where each host gets to take control of one other team member's schedule and assign a band they have to see while in Austin.

Head over to our SXSW page for NPR Music's full coverage of this year's festival. And stay tuned to our social media for updates, announcements and late-night dispatches from Bob, Robin and the All Songs team at SXSW.

SXSW 2016 Music Preview

  • The Regrettes

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    "A Living Human Girl"

    From 'Hey!'

    Regrettes is a garage pop band from California made up of two teens, singer Lydia Night and drummer Marlhy Murphy, who were both seasoned musicians when they met at a School of Rock in 2002.

  • Exploded View

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    "No More Parties In The Attic"

    From 'No More Parties in the Attic'

    Exploded View's members are based in both Berlin and Mexico City. The group's lead singer, Anika, conjures the specter of Nico with her ethereal vocals.

  • Dodge & Fuski

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    "Killer Bees"

    From 'Killer Bees – Single'

    Dodge & Fuski is a dubstep production duo who mix samples from films and television into their beats, in the spirit of bands like Public Service Broadcasting and the Avalanches, except with exactly zero subtlety.

  • Kao=S

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    From 'Dawn Of The Planet Chaos'

    Japanese art rockers Kao=S are led by a performance artist known for dancing with swords in the middle of shows.

  • Dirty Dishes

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    "Red Roulette"

    From 'Guilty'

    New York-based duo Dirty Dishes plays loud, fun, cathartic rock and roll.

  • Mercury Girls

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    "Golden (Demo)"

    From 'Demos & Live Songs'

    Philadelphia-based Mercury Girls have a sound that is a little jangle-y, a little pop-y and guaranteed to make you bounce.

  • September Girls

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    "Love No One"

    From 'Age Of Indignation'

    The powerful rock of Dublin-based five piece September Girls is soaked in reverb.

  • The Quebe Sisters Band

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    "It's a Sin To Tell a Lie"

    From 'Every Which-a-Way'

    The Texas siblings in The Quebe Sisters Band play Western swing and fiddle music, complete with compact vocal harmonies.

  • Billie Marten

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    From 'As Long As'

    Billie Marten is a 16-year-old from North Yorkshire, England with a beautiful voice who began posting videos to YouTube when she was just nine years old.

  • Wall

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    "Cuban Cigars"

    From 'Wall EP'

    New York post punk outfit Wall sounds a bit like Wire if the group was fronted by Kathleen Hanna.

  • Mal Blum

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    "Better Go!"

    From 'You Look A Lot Like Me'

    Robin can't imagine a person on the NPR Music staff, or who follows our programming, who would not love the throwback-'90s sound and deadpan humor of Mal Blum.

  • Overcoats

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    "Smaller Than My Mother"

    From 'Smaller Than My Mother'

    The charming east coast duo Overcoats reminds Bob of My bubba — the heart of what these two do is in the playfulness of their vocal performances.

  • Julia Jacklin

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    "LA Dream"

    From 'LA Dream – Single'

    Equal parts Sharon Van Etten and Angel Olsen, Julia Jacklin hits Stephen right in his heart.

  • Holly Macve

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    "The Corner Of My Mind (Bedroom Demo)"

    From 'The Corner Of My Mind (Bedroom Demo) - Single'

    Bob Boilen's Secret SX Santa gift for Stephen Thompson is Holly Macve, and he's putting money down that her haunting voice will make Stephen weep in the streets of Austin.

  • toyGuitar

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    "Is It True?"

    From 'In This Mess'

    Stephen Thompson's Secret SX Santa gift for Saidah Blount is toyGuitar. The group's "Is It True?" is a summer-y pop punk song that would sound great blasting out of a car with the windows down.

  • Gallant

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    "Skipping Stones feat. Jhené Aiko"

    From 'Skipping Stones - Single'

    Saidah Blount's Secret SX Santa pick for Robin Hilton is the D.C.-born R&B singer Gallant. Now based in L.A., he makes music that goes all over the place, but retains a strong, soulful core.

  • Judah & the Lion

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    "Kickin' Da Leaves"

    From 'Kids These Days'

    Robin Hilton's Secret SX Santa for Bob Boilen is Nashville four-piece Judah & The Lion, whose live show is all about getting the audience involved, but whose earnestness comes across in their records.