Ah, music festivals. The excitement of discovering a new favorite artist. The communal joy in singing along with several thousand other people at the top of your lungs. The thrill of walking around from stage to tent like a lost tourist wandering through an airport. The wonders of limited cell phone reception. The decadent pleasures of indulging in ridiculously overpriced beer or water. Who doesn’t enjoy a good festival experience?

Well, okay, maybe if you’re north of 30 years old you might find the process of standing around in an open field for hours, half-listening to a band you don’t care about or have never heard of, and waiting for the artist you do care about… to be a bit tiresome at best. And who could blame you? It can be a harrowing ordeal. And when you factor in Argentina’s propensity for logistical blunders and oversights, it makes perfect sense that people start sitting these out.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. Things can be better. You can get much more out of the festival-going experience. Okay, true, we can’t do much to fix some of the aforementioned problems – you’re probably going to end up paying eleventy million pesos for a soda and a sub-par hamburger – but what we can do is introduce you to some of the artists in the south end of the lineup. You know, the tiny names near the bottom of the list that are barely legible? The people who will effectively be the soundtrack to much of your waiting-around time? Maybe familiarize yourself with some of their work so your standing-around time is more like dancing-around time. Bam.

One of the biggest annual festivals in town, Personal Fest is returning on November 10th and 11th at the Club Ciudad Buenos Aires. Tickets will sell out, so make sure to buy them now if you’re interested. The headliners are the peculiar pairing of Robbie Williams and Lorde. Other popular artists playing this year include MGMT, Death Cab for Cutie, Warpaint, Deerhunter, Zoé, and several others.

But hey, chances are you already know those guys. Let’s talk about some of what will end up being your favorite discoveries.

Check our playlist below to listen to hand-picked selections from the artists we’re discussing today. And make sure to follow BubbleAr on Spotify for our weekly Staff Picks and other kiewl playlists!


Breezy, somewhat ethereal, always delightfully catchy, funk-influenced jams courtesy of singer-songwriter Agustín Bucich and his merry band of Elefante en la Habitación labelmate all-stars. You want to make sure to hit the venue early to check out this band, which has gathered up quite a bit of live show buzz in recent days.


A band that effortlessly hits the sweet spot between “poppy” and “chill,” Las Luces Primeras specialize in half-whispered, bass-driven nocturnal cityscapes punctuated by synths that sound like they’re breaking through from some distant galaxy.


If you’re a sucker for sweetly plucked arpeggios, make sure to check out this acoustic-based duo, who approach the tried-and-true folk genre with equal amounts elegant sweetness and DIY punk-rock grit.


And if you like your pop songs to sound huge, lumbering, ornately orchestrated monsters with big, booming drum machine sounds and a number of synthy flourishes (and, honestly, who doesn’t want that?), make sure to check out Hembro, who specialize in this brand of irresistible bells-and-whistles pop craftsmanship.


Last year we had the pleasure of attending the Tegan and Sara show at Niceto, which Potra opened. To say that the band – led by the charismatic and mega-talented Sofía Vitola – blew us away would be an understatement. Check out their blend of propulsive chant-along indie-rock and bedroom pop.


La Femme D’Argent specializes in a very idiosyncratic brand of elegant, noir-influenced nighttime jams, perfect for getting lost in increasingly dimly-lit city streets and openingly questioning the true nature of every interpersonal relationship in your life.


Nidos make the kind of turn-of-the-century post-punk that makes you wonder why you stopped listening to new music in the first place, incorporating jaunty rhythms and irresistibly twinkly guitar touches and stouthearted shout-it-from-the-rooftops choruses.


Julio Franchi’s voice – and more specifically, his delivery – communicates a sort of world-weariness that seems vaguely incongruous with his music, which is a youthful combination of pop-rock, synthpop and blues elements. However, that combination works perfectly to create its own unique sound, which is addictive in the extreme.


Meanwhile, if you want to get your festival started with a therapeutic dose of vigorous dancing, why not check out sibling duo Valdes? With their blend of danceable house/pop stylings, you’re sure to be shaking your tail feather within minutes of their set.


As a member of seminal group Onda Vaga, Tomás Justo established himself as an exciting artist in the world of indie rock. As a solo artist, he continues to mix elements of traditional rock music with a dash of autochtonous rhythms, and a healthy amount of off-kilter elements.

So, there you have it folks. Now we hang tight and wait until November, and remember to check out the Personal Fest website for more information.

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2018-07-31 16:57:39

Jorge Farah

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