Here's What Austin Bands Think of ACL

Categories: Festivals

Katie Moulton
The Preservation played its first ACL show this year.
In Austin, where a "local" act's following often extends nationally, what does it mean for a band to play inside City Limits? We spoke with members of two Austin-based bands--Jeff Klein of My Jerusalem, and Mario and Cayce Matteoli of The Preservation--to find out what it means to be both insiders and first-timers at ACL.

Traver Rains
My Jerusalem

The Band: My Jerusalem (Saturday, October 12, 12:00pm, Austin Ventures Stage)

Background: Founded by Jeff Klein, formerly of the Twilight Singers and Gutter Twins, who decided to form a new band while on tour in Israel. According to Klein, it was his wish that the next band be as "intense a concept and experience" as walking through Jerusalem that day. "I just kept thinking, 'I want this to be our Jerusalem.'"

Happening now: Second album Preachers released in fall 2012, on tour most of last year, currently with Electric Six. The band "finally came together about a year and a half ago. I consider Preachers to be our first record. The first record was just a record, without the band," Klein says. Plans for the next record are already in the works for the end of the year.

Texas Connection: All band members live in Austin. Klein moved here ten years ago, and after a hiatus in New Orleans, he's back.

On the Austin music scene: "There are a lot of shows, a lot of venues. But I'm a little bit of a recluse when I'm not on tour...Every scene is a little passive-aggressively competitive. Everybody wants to see people succeed. Everybody also likes to see them fail. But people do better in packs."

On ACL: While Klein has played ACL before as a solo artist and with the Honorary Title, it's the first time for this band together. "It's a benchmark of success, and it brings a lot of money into our community."

Extra pressure for this set? "We'll probably labor over the set list more. We won't want it to be all mid-tempo downer songs...which I sometimes tend towards."

Most excited to see: The Cure, Kendrick Lamar, HAIM and Reignwolf.

ACL compared to other festivals: My Jerusalem recently played some European festivals: "We rolled up to the Czech Republic to 4,000 twenty-five-year-olds all singing along. They have some rabid music fans there. I don't know how often bands are playing Slovenia..." so when there's a festival, the access to the experience of that music is consolidated. "We get spoiled over here," Klein says of the easy access to bands in the US and Austin specifically.

A conversation with The Preservation is on the next page.

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