Fortress Fest is an annual destination festival that takes place in the heart of Fort Worth’s Arts District. Now in its 3rd year, Fortress Fest has become a well oiled machine and a staple for the month of April. Once again it featured bands from all over the world, but also shined a heavy spotlight on homegrown Texas bands, including the Sunday night headliner Leon Bridges. With sold out crowds both days, there’s no question it will make it return next year.
On a personal level, I’ve been fortunate enough to have been able to shoot Fortress Fest for the past three years and have always had a great time. When the lineup was released earlier this year I was a little skeptical about it. I only recognized a hand full of the twenty bands that were scheduled to play it, but like with most festivals, my mentality is to just go out there and experience it all because you never know when you might walk away with a new favorite band (see Purity Ring in year one).
This year it was Superorganism and Khruangbin. Both uniquely different and surprisingly refreshing. Superorganism is what would happen if you and your church choir decided to take acid and make some music while on the Sesame Street set with Elon Musk. This Transatlantic group should be re-labeled and classified as intergalactic and be the official welcoming party for anything that might pay a visit to our planet.
Burton, Texas trio Khruangbin is hard to describe. The semi-instrumental band fuses funk and rock into a psychedelic landscape that’s really fun and relaxing. Throw in the old school hip hop melody jam they put together towards the end of their set and it was the perfect climax as the sun was setting in the west.
Being born and raised in Fort Worth, I’m proud that Fortress Fest is shinning light on the culture and art that our city is known for and is letting the rest of the world know about it.