From bluesy rock to tweaked electro-pop, these acts justified their buzz—or sparked some.

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Flickr user magerleagues

Among the hundreds of bands who head to South by Southwest in Austin each year, many are looking to get "discovered" by tastemakers and record labels.


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That's a tough task if for no other reason than the sheer amount of competition for attention. Nearly as tough, though, is the job of bands who have already gained some hype on the strength of a few songs or records and who now, in a flurry of back-to-back concerts, must prove they've got the goods live to justify their acclaim.

We'd heard of some of the bands listed below and were impressed by them, when we saw them this past week. Others were entirely new. All are worth a listen.