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ACL Fest 2016: Hey, let’s meet at Bob Moses

Bob Moses is the human embodiment of the culturally ubiquitous Snapchat floral crown. It’s nonchalantly cool and dressed for summer, but it’s also not here to make a statement. You can take a group picture during it because it’s a lull perfect for recalibrating–and you can dress it up with a filter to make the occasion seem more fun.

Tom Howie, of Bob Moses, performs on the Cirrus Logic Stage at the Austin City Limits Music Festival on October 2, 2016. (Tamir Kalifa for American-Statesman)

Tom Howie, of Bob Moses, performs on the Cirrus Logic Stage at the Austin City Limits Music Festival on October 2, 2016. (Tamir Kalifa for American-Statesman)

The Vancouver-bred, New York-made three-piece band hit the star-crossed Cirrus Logic stage Sunday afternoon and churned out its aristocratic poolside jams perfect for South Congress brunches, where plates become immortalized by social media.

I’m certainly not above that. “Before I Fall” connected with tambourine-led percussion and gorgeous riffs.

“Hey you know who this is?” an exuberant swaying man said in front of me. He missed the “Bob Moses” stenciled onto the band’s front-and-center bass drum.

Bob Moses was started by journeymen musicians and producers Tom Howie and Jimmy Vallance, who funneled their indie rock and trance backgrounds into pleasant tunes that are great for commercial licensing. It’s subtle and steadfast, but for an iteration of ACL that’s been defined by dad rock, flaming EDM, and Kendrick Lamar, Bob Moses bled into the pack.

A word about the Cirrus Logic stage: For years attendees have been conditioned to expect it to cause congestion in its old locale near the food court. Now it’s to the right of the Barton Springs entrance, and totally forgotten. You know how a friend will text you to meet up near a flag but it’s too dense to ever get there? Not so during Bob Moses, a set that made an ideal meeting point because it was rich with cell service.

Plop down your inflatable couch and take a seat if you like, I’m leaving after 45 minutes to get a good spot for Willie.


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