Despite the obstacles Mother Nature has thrown at Texas the past couple of weeks, the long-awaited Free Press Summer Fest (FPSF) is back for its seventh year with a new location and bigger acts. The two-day music festival, now held at the NRG Park, will showcase big names such as Skrillex, R. Kelly, Belle and Sebastian, Weezer, Tears for Fears, and many more.
Given FPSF’s long lineup of 74 vastly different acts, choosing which ones to see will probably be the hardest decision fans make this weekend. To help those who are still losing sleep over which acts to see, we’ve compiled a list of the top seven bands every music fan must see this weekend:
1) Second Lovers – Formed in Houston in 2010, Second Lovers have been through it all. From changing their sound to shifts in the lineup, the band owes its success to hard work and persistence. This folky indie rock band is a must-see for all those who appreciate great music and an inspirational comeback story.
2) The Tontons –Named as the “best band in Houston” by Bun B, The Tontons owe much of their success to their creative methods and lead singer Asil Omar’s unique voice. This indie rock band has been Houston’s pride and joy since 2007, as they serve as a great way for newcomers to immerse themselves in the city’s burgeoning music scene.
3) Skrillex – With six Grammy awards under his belt, it is no surprise that Skrillex is headlining this year’s FPSF. The producer and DJ produces high-energy electronic dance music (EDM) that will keep your hands in the air long after the music has stopped.
4) Belle and Sebastian – The Scottish indie-pop band is known for writing lyrics that perfectly relate to anyone who has ever felt like an outsider. The band’s soft folk-pop rock sound creates the perfect opportunity to take a break from the festival craziness and just enjoy the music being played.
5) Chance the Rapper – Hailing from Chicago, this hip-hop artist is known for his vibrant rhymes and retro beats (Billboard). He toured with Childish Gambino in 2012 and has worked with big names such as Justin Bieber and Madonna (Free Press Summer Fest). Chance the Rapper brings a new, fresh look to the hip-hop industry and should be a destination set for rap enthusiasts.
6) ODESZA – The electronic duo from Seattle has created a unique voice in the EDM industry that has fans hooked. The group prides itself in creating songs, not just beats, which sets them apart from the traditional EDM style (ODESZA). If you’re looking for a blend of song and beats, then check out ODESZA this weekend.
7) R. Kelly – Best known as the “King of R&B,” R. Kelly is probably this year’s biggest act (Free Press Summer Fest). The singer is responsible for the world famous “I Believe I Can Fly”, “Bump N’Grind”, and many more R&B classics (Free Press Summer Fest). If you’re looking for a taste of music from the early 2000’s, R. Kelly is definitely an act you will not want to miss.
From indie to EDM to hip-hop, the seven acts chosen offer a wide variety of music taste, directly reflecting not only FPSF, but also its fans. For the past six years, FPSF has without fail delivered a unique and unforgettable experience, to both its fans and acts.
However, with the recent record-breaking flash floods, for the first time, the success of FPSF seemed almost impossible. Thankfully, the staff really stepped up – from finding a new location, to coming up with a new layout, to setting up seven stages in the space of less than two weeks. For the first time, Free Press will be held on NRG Park’s Yellow Lot, otherwise known as its “Main Street Lot” (Houston Press). Fans should expect a completely different layout than before. While at Eleanor Tinsley, the festival’s home, the layout was long and linear, at NRG it will be more of a round layout (Houston Press).
Even with these changes, Free Press Summer Fest 21015 should still meet, if not exceed, fans’ expectations. Just remember, drink lots of water and wear lots of sunscreen — it’s going to be a hot one this weekend!