ACL Artist Spotlight: Khruangbin

Donald “DJ” Johnson, Laura Lee, Mark Speer by Mary Kang 

No other band has recently taken flight in the indie music scene more so than Khruangbin, which is appropriate since their name roughly translates to “airplane” in Thai. A trio out of Houston, Texas, the group consists of Donald Johnson on drums/percussion, the illustrious Laura Lee on bass guitar, and Mark Speer as Jimi Hendrix reincarnate.

Khruangbin’s sound is hard to describe, rivaled only by their name pronunciation in terms of difficulty. Thai Funk? Iranian Folk? Modern Psychedelia? These are all labels that can be used to describe Khruangbin, but neither of them are definitive of their sound. Like the city they’re based out of, Khruangbin is a melting pot of influences, cultures and sounds that have all come together to give themselves a truly one-of-a-kind identity.

The band has only put out two full length albums: 2015’s The Universe Smiles Upon You and 2018’s Con Todo El Mundotheir most popular songs including “Mr.White,” “August 10,” “Friday Morning” and “Maria Tambien.

When’s the next time you can catch them in the Lone Star State you ask? The first week of Austin City Limits on October 7th. Catch their first (and certainly not last) ACL performance alongside others such as fellow Houston native Travis Scott, Alvvays, Father John Misty, Brockhampton and others here. As usual, ACL is the one music festival you don’t want to miss out on.

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