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Let's Get High: Five Must-See Acts to Catch at Austin's Levitation Fest This Weekend 

click to enlarge Emma Ruth Rundle - FACEBOOK / EMMA RUTH RUNDLE
  • Facebook / Emma Ruth Rundle
  • Emma Ruth Rundle
Levitation Fest — formerly Austin Psych Fest — kicks off Thursday night in the Texas capital, starting a four-day binge of psych rock, mind-bending metal, freak folk, trip-hop, noise and everything in between.

More than 50 bands are included in the lineup, which can make for an exhausting experience. With that in mind, here's a streamlined list of five must-see acts for those trying to pace themselves during the freaky festivities.

click to enlarge FACEBOOK / CHELSEA WOLFE
  • Facebook / Chelsea Wolfe
Chelsea Wolfe

Wolfe — a singer-songwriter who straddles folk, goth and doom metal — has grown darker and heavier over recent albums. Combining ethereal vocals with groaning guitar progressions, she builds compositions capable of swallowing listeners whole. 5 p.m. and 9:30 p.m., Saturday, Central Presbyterian Church, 200 E. 8th St., Austin.

click to enlarge FACEBOOK / TOBACCO
  • Facebook / Tobacco

Experimental electronic band Black Moth Super Rainbow's frontman Thomas Fec has a solo project called Tobacco that rarely performs in Texas, so here's your chance. Much like BMSR, Tobacco produces analog synth sounds that spiral into oblivion. Combine those otherworldly sounds with heavy vocal effects, and you've got an entrancing blend that may open portals to other dimensions. 10:30 p.m., Saturday, Empire Control Room & Garage, 606 E. 7th St., Austin.

click to enlarge FACEBOOK / EMMA RUTH RUNDLE
  • Facebook / Emma Ruth Rundle
Emma Ruth Rundle

Add a touch of Mazzy Starr, a sprinkling of PJ Harvey and a dash of Alanis Morissette and you’ve pretty got a recipe for singer-songwriter Emma Ruth Rundle's work. Similar to Chelsea Wolfe, Rundle builds atmospheric songs that swell into depressive soundscapes. 11:15 p.m., Friday, Empire Control Room & Garage, 606 E. 7th St., Austin.

  • Facebook / Russian Circles
Russian Circles

Lords of instru-metal, the trio Russian Circles creates masterfully crafted, vocal-free tracks that often stretch into eight-minute epics. 10:15 p.m., Friday, Empire Control Room & Garage, 606 E. 7th St., Austin.

click to enlarge CHRIS CONDE
  • Chris Conde

By weaving together black metal, shoegaze and post-rock, Deafheaven have, for good reason, emerged as one of the best-known acts in atmospheric metal. 11:45 p.m., Friday, Empire Control Room & Garage, 606 E. 7th St., Austin.

Weekend passes and tickets for each individual show are still on sale.

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January 12, 2022

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