Worth the Drive: FYF Fest

L.A.’s Yearly Ode to All Things Indie Kicks Off this Saturday

This weekend, Los Angeles State Historic Park will play host to more than 70 musical performers and 17 comedians over two days as part of the annual and still-expanding FYF Fest. Headlining the event are big-name indie acts like Refused, M83, and Beirut, as well as a small army of supporting acts. Below, we help you navigate the massive lineup with a mixtape’s worth of YouTube clips that are guaranteed to get you hyped up for the weekend.


Talk about commercial appeal: M83’s “Midnight City” has been used as the soundtrack to lingerie models strutting their stuff (thanks, Victoria’s Secret), as well as the BBC’s coverage of the 2012 Olympic Games. Here’s the man behind it all, Anthony Gonzalez, performing the song live on Last Call with Carson Daly.


Swedish punk rockers Refused dropped three albums before splitting in 1998, but reunited earlier this year at the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival, where they delivered one of the most unapologetically rocking sets of the weekend. Watch them perform “New Noise” in Stockholm, Sweden.


Zach Condon’s three-man band turned ten-piece festival favorite brings accordions, trumpets, and ukuleles to forefront of the indie-rock circuit. The official video for “Postcards from Italy” (below) captures the scrapbooked essence of Beirut’s Balkan-influenced, symphonic-meets-bohemian sounds.


These Brooklynites describe their sound as “Middle Eastern-psych-pop-snap-gospel.” Call it what you want, we just know it’s infectious. This summer the band released its third full-length, Fragrant World. Check out this clip of them performing new single “Henrietta” at the Music Hall of Wiliamsburg.

James Blake

English singer-songwriter and music producer James Blake released his debut in February of 2011, an album that many have called a redefinition of modern pop. Check out James Blake’s electronic stylings in a live studio recording his hit “The Wilhelm Scream.”

Sleigh Bells

The Brooklyn-based pop duo dropped their debut LP in May 2010 to much critical acclaim. The follow-up, this year’s Reign of Terror picks up right where its predecessor left off, with pummeling beats and sinister mix of electro and punk. Their bubbly performance of “Kids” nicely represents their specific fusion of rock and hip-hop.


Givers have come a long way in the last year, thanks to their swelling harmonies and vivacious live shows. Here’s the band performing “Saw You First” live at South by Southwest in Austin, Texas.


FYF Fest kicks off this Saturday, September 1 in L.A. State Historic Park (1245 N. Spring St. Los Angeles) at 12 noon. For tickets and information, visit

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