The hustle and bustle of the state Capitol was greater than usual this weekend, as people from around the world flocked to Zilker Park for this year’s second round of Austin City Limits. With scheduled performances by artists ranging from to the ex-Beatle Sir Paul McCartney to Houston-born Travis Scott, the festival’s lineup catered to people of all music inclinations.
In contrast to the preceding weekend’s brutal heat, Weekend 2’s fickle weather worked in music fans’ favor. It provided fatigued festival attendees with wind chills and sprinkles of rain to help them combat the merciless sun.
Although headlining artists were slated to perform later in the day, Day 1’s earlier moments still brought on powerful artists whose setlists rocked the crowds to their core. Day 1’s most impressive performance came from Chicago-born rapper Noname. Her quick rapping style and witty wordplay captivated listeners at the HomeAway stage. As she performed groovy tunes such as “Self” and “Montego Bae,” the crowd couldn’t help but rock to the beat.
Unlike Day 1, Day 2 gave smaller acts their time to shine. With headlining artists set to perform later that night, festival-goers meandered across Zilker Park in pursuit of new music. Acts ranging from country artist Charley Crockett to indie-pop gem VÉRITÉ showcased their skills earlier on in the day, filling the festival with melodies of varying genres.
For many, the day’s lineup failed to satiate their musical appetites. As a result, an unexpected act garnered much of the crowd’s attention. Right before 2:30 p.m., many gathered at the festival’s beer hall to watch the Longhorns face the Baylor Bears. Chants of “Texas Fight!” interrupted the music echoing throughout the park, as festival attendees cheered the Longhorns towards another victory.
As Bazzi finished the last lines of his meme-ified hit “Smile” on the HomeAway stage, Lil’ Wayne fans forward for their chance to see the star in the flesh. Tensions in the crowd were high, as fans shoved and even fought an hour before the show. Lil Wayne’s performance brought the audience together, including songs ranging from his new hit “Uproar” to classic throwback “A Milli.” However, Lil’ Wayne’s last-minute fill-in failed to satisfy Childish Gambino fans, as many attendees sported the latter’s tour shirts throughout the park.
As compared to Saturday, Sunday’s lineup brought more to the table. Seattle-based rock band Thunderpussy added to the noon’s heat on the Honda stage, fusing together theatrical glamour with heavy metal. Across the park, the all-powerful Janelle Monae gave a politically-charged performance at American Express stage. But In spite of the strong lineup, no one at the festival could contain their excitement for the Travis Scott finale.
Scott’s act was the most embellished of the whole weekend. Fireworks, flames and trippy visuals added to the crowd’s energy high. Many fans in the throng contributed to the performance’s multi-colored, “ASTROWORLD,” aesthetic, waving illuminated flags and tossing glowsticks in the air. Shaquille O’Neal’s guest appearance during Scott’s performance of “CAROUSEL” added a comedic element to the show, throwing off the setlist’s momentum.
In spite of lineup change-ups and other inconveniences, ACL 2018 succeeded in creating another event-filled memory for its attendees. At the event’s conclusion, festival-goers dragged their weary feet through the park’s various exist with the possibilities of next year’s lineup already on their mind.