Five international acts to catch at Culture Collide Festival

Culture-Collide_postBy Josh Herwitt //

Culture Collide Festival //
Various venues in San Francisco and Los Angeles
October 14th-15th in SF; October 16th-18th in LA //

Culture Collide Festival hits SF for the first time Tuesday and Wednesday before heading south to LA for its fifth edition this weekend. Two of the biggest names on this year’s lineup — headliners Clap Your Hands Say Yeah and Cloud Nothings — currently call the U.S. their home, but the emphasis on young, budding international artists remains a sticking point for the festival’s organizers. With shows spread across both cities this week, here are five non-domestic acts worth catching at Culture Collide in SF and LA.

5. Go Back to the Zoo (Netherlands)

These indie rockers by way of Amsterdam are led by brothers Cas Hieltjes (vocals) and Teun Hieltjes (guitar). Think Foals, but with a few more pop hooks.

4. Nothing But Thieves (UK)

Currently signed to RCA Records, this English five-piece features the silky-smooth voice of lead singer Conor Mason. With their influences ranging from Ray Charles to Arcade Fire, Nothing But Thieves has continued to grow after collaborating recently with several songwriters and producers in LA, New York and Nashville.

3. SKYROADS (Israel)

Israeli electro-disco rockers SKYROADS formed late last year with a vision to fuse fuzzed-out synths and danceable beats together at once. Noam Hod (production, programming, keyboards) plays a big part in cultivating the Tel Aviv quintet’s sound, which may be characterized best by its 2013 hit single “Synthetic.”

2. Alphabetics (Costa Rica)

This Central American outfit harvests a dance-punk, party-rock feel while maintaining some of its Latin flare on tracks like “Bistek (Another Mistake)” and “Frutista.” With three of the band’s four members lending their pipes at any given time, Alphabetics know how to do more than just ignite a dance party.

1. Gossling (Australia)

It’s been a big year for Melbourne singer-songwriter Helen Croome, who is better known by her stage name Gossling. Nominated for a 2014 ARIA Award after releasing its debut Harvest of Gold last year, the band has quickly emerged as an important piece in Australia’s growing independent music scene.

Which international acts are you looking forward to seeing at Culture Collide?


  1. Alphabetics is going to be huge.. Check them out on the youtube for Undercover Martyn

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