Tyler, the Creator, Doja Cat, Machine Gun Kelly and the best of ACL’s first weekend
Austin City Limits got off to a rough start on Friday. The festival gates, which were scheduled to open at noon, delayed entry for fans until 3 p.m. due to heavy rains the day before, creating a traffic jam in the streets and at entrances.
Once fans entered Zilker Park, they were treated to acts such as Machine Gun Kelly which debuted at 4 p.m. on the Honda Stage. Live music was back in full force. MGK’s set was just the tip of the iceberg on Friday. Shortly after her set, Megan Thee Stallion – one of the many Texan artists on the bill – blew up the roof of the stage and was even joined by Miley Cyrus at one point. You could even say it was … “wild”.
A real treat on Friday, however, was the filming of young Dermot Kennedy on the VRBO stage, which made it a clear opportunity for audiences as they watched over the precipice.
Saturday’s shows ironed out all the difficulties of the day before and started off as usual. Performer Gracie Abrams, daughter of TV and film royalty JJ Abrams, wore a “Bans off my body” hat for her set, something that was a recurring theme among the women who performed on the weekends. . The Ladies reigned supreme on the Lady Bird stage, where Girl in Red tore the stage apart by taking off her shoes – then instantly regretting doing it on a stage that was baking in the sun.
Phoebe Bridgers performed her brand of emo songs, laughing as she dedicated a song to “everyone who ever had to lie to CPS for their parents.” Doja Cat hit the Honda scene right after, completely changing the mood with jungle backdrop and backup dancers. It was a visual feast and the crowd couldn’t help but nod to the rhythm of the catchy beats.
The male performers also had their moments on Saturday. North Texan Charley Crockett lit up the VRBO scene by bringing a heavy dose of classic country to the festival. Crockett feels torn from the Johnny Cash generation, Merle Haggard, and was a welcome bit of variety on a weekend full of mostly contemporary music acts.
Jack Harlow closed the Miller stage on Saturday, drawing a massive crowd. Easily one of the biggest draws of the day, Miller even had singer Shawn Mendes in the crowd. The level of arrogance on Harlow alone could fill a stadium, making it a performance not to be missed.
Sunday, the last day of the first weekend, Dallas native Marc Rebillet aka Loop Daddy tore up the T-Mobile stage, improvising songs on the spot. One concerned the possibility of “seeing your penis through your pants”. Rebillet was probably the craziest ensemble of the whole weekend – and insanely entertaining.
Another Dallas gem, St. Vincent, hit the T-Mobile scene after sunset, bringing its glam rock brand to the festival. His fans ate him. Performing several songs from his latest album daddy’s house set against a downtown style cityscape backdrop in true St. Vincent theatrical fashion, his show was complete with subtle choreography.
Tyler, the creator closed the lineup, and his performance was complete with a full-size boat, fireworks, and enough energy to propel Texas into a blizzard. A late addition to Da Baby’s place, which has been replaced due to recent homophobic comments, Tyler’s crowd was not as large as one might expect, an unfortunate effect of being closer on Sunday . It was a fantastic set nonetheless, a complete visual spectacle to accompany his carefully crafted songs.