Live music preview: Win tickets to Homegrown Festival in Dallas featuring Austin bands

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By: Greg Ackerman

If you’re a regular reader of our live music coverage, then you know we’re huge local music fans. What happens when some cool folks in Dallas produce a small-format festival in the heart of Dallas with a lineup that features some of our most beloved Austin acts? We head north for the ninth version of a tidy little one-day fest called Homegrown. The roster looks like an extension of LEVATION festival with post-rock heroes, Explosions in the Sky headlining. Neo-psych rock gods The Black Angels, Psychedelic music pioneer Roky Erickson and hard-rocking power trio Ume join their ATX brethren at Main Street Garden Park this Saturday, May 12.

We want one of you lucky readers to join us at the park. Head to our Twitter page and retweet our post with this article in the link. Don’t forget to @ mention a friend and use the hashtag #HG9 to enter. The winner will be chosen randomly and announced via Twitter at 5pm Friday.

There are several appealing facets of Homegrown Festival. With limited space for two big stages at opposite ends of the park, no set overlaps another. Ticket buyers could conceivably watch each and every performance. An opportunity that is not often presented at any music festival, let alone one with such a good bill.

Since we’re talking about the lineup again, let’s talk about the rest of this exemplary list of bands. Canandian indie-pop act Alvvays bring a shoe-gazey, dream pop sensibility to the festival. Their 2014 eponymous debut hit number one on U.S. college radio charts. We’re looking forward to catching their set as the group skipped SXSW in favor of an European tour.

Headliners Explosions in the Sky are a true Austin success story. Although the group has performed in Austin since their main stage appearance at Primavera Sound Festival in 2016, we’ve only seen the post-rock giants perform once since. The thought of seeing EITS in a more intimate setting, like their incredible 2015 appearance at the limited-attendance Utopiafest makes us giddy. We’re expecting a similarly impressive light show. Side note: This show is one of only two dates listed on the EITS tour schedule so far this year.

The Mustachio Light Show that comes with The Black Angels’ performances is perhaps more impressive as Bob Mustachio employs an array of film, video and projection lighting into the production. His work is really a technology-fueled expansion on the traditional light projector gel visuals used in when the wave psych rock innovators led by the Grateful Dead, Pink Floyd and Texas’ own Roky Erickson began using visuals for the fans using LSD to trip during shows.

Our fingers are crossed TBA guitarist Christian Bland avoids sound issues that plagued his LEVITATION set two weeks ago. Despite the unusual sound issues the band found a way to work around the technical problems. Drummer Stephanie Bailey who was next to Bland on stage did a particularly good job of picking up the slack as did guitarist, Jake Garcia. An act as experienced as The Black Angels have surely worked out the kinks since then.

Tickets are still available for advance purchase at the Homegrown Festival website. Low ticket prices ($42 & $125) gives a lot of bang for your buck. Eleven bands at that price work out to less than $4 an act. Grabbing a ticket for that kind of value is a no-brainer for people who like good music.