10 can’t-miss acts at Moogfest 2016

By Julie Smitka 

May 16, 2016

Paula Temple

The heart of Moogfest is the synthesis of music, art, and technology. Paula Temple embodies this through her undeniable versatility. Her discipline as a DJ and producer are apparent in her EPs (on R&S Records, Noise Manifesto, etc.), but her talents extend from her own music into the community of the music industry. Temple has remixed tracks for artists including Chevel and Fink, and is even credited with co-developing one of the first live-performance midi controllers, the MXF8.

I Speak Machine

Together, filmmaker Maf Lewis and composer/vocalist Tara Busch create soundtracks for horror and sci-fi films. Other than their work on short films “Gagglebox,” “The Silence,” and “Zombies 1985,” I Speak Machine have also performed throughout Europe, and supported Gary Numan during 3 nights at the Telegram Ballroom in LA. Currently, I Speak Machine are focusing on graphic novel and feature-length film “STRATA,” on a team with Tommy Lee Edwards, Lex Records, Google, and Penguin/Random House.


Gary Grice, better know by GZA, or “The Genius” of Wu-Tang Clan, stands out from other MCs. His rap consist of truculent flow, thick vocabulary, and unique rhyme schemes that mimic his refusal to be placed in a box and his perspective on sugar-coated post-civil rights progress.

His 1995 debut solo album Liquid Swords continues to receive positive criticism decades after its introduction, receiving a perfect score from Pitchfork for its 2012 reissue. GZA is performing during two nights of Moogfest, so there is no reason for you to miss experiencing his powerful performance.


ODESZA introduced themselves with 2012’s “Summer’s Gone,” a refreshing collection of deep base and dreamlike melodies for the electronic scene. Members Harrison Mills and Clayton Knight (known as CatacombKid and BeachesBeaches) have been recording together since meeting at Western Washington University, and have quickly developed their bold sound from their instant musical chemistry.

Sunn O)))

With 18 years of music spanning drone, doom metal, noise, and ambient genres, Sunn O))) have established themselves as dark, relentless artists. Their sounds are as intimidating as their collaboration history, including work with Boris, Goatsnake, Merzbow, and Burning Witch. Sunn O)))’s founders Stephen O’Malley and Greg Anderson will be performing alongside members Tos Nieuwenhuizen, Attila Csihar, and Rex Ritter outdoors at Carolina Theatre. If you have trouble finding them, look for figures wearing black hooded robes shrouded by fog, and listen for the loudest sound.

Claire Evans

Moogfest veterans YACHT return at the festival’s new home with more than a performance. The pop duo’s vocalist Claire Evans will be discussing her debut book The Future is Unmanned during her program of the same name. As an editor for Motherboard and Terraform, Evans offers a unique feminist perspective on the history of the Internet — one that people of all genders can appreciate.

Although YACHT received negative criticism for their recent publicity stunt, both Evans and Jona Bechtolt issued an apology after explaining the hoax as “a project that allowed us to play with science fiction, the attention economy, clickbait journalism, and celebrity sex tapes all at once.”


Carrboro, NC natives Edaan Brook and Brint Hasen form an electric duo whose sounds may very well be of another planet. The ex-college roommates share a brother-like cooperation that shows in their music and live sets through their alternating contributions.

Last year, Earthly’s first album, Days, caught the attention of Black Dice’s Eric Copeland and CDM. Both Copeland and CDM remixed songs (“RBG” and “Backflip,” respectively), introducing many of their own fans to the duo’s distinct style. Though Earthly is fairly new to sharing their music with the public, they are already working on their sophomore album, which is expected to be finished in 2017.


Ryan Sciaino, alias Ghostdad, combines music with moving images to present live visuals at music festivals, night clubs, and other venues. In 2012, Ghostdad performed in front of thousands with Porter Robinson at Coachella, and collaborated again in 2014 on Porter’s Worlds tour. Sciaino’s work includes music with his band WIN WIN and the band Prince Rama, as well as three scores for director Larry Cohen, and commercial pieces for Facebook, Puma, and others.

Blood Orange

Devonté (Dev) Hynes has released two albums on Domino Recording Co. under the name Blood Orange; written and produced songs for Florence and the Machine, Tinashe, and Solange Knowles; scored Palo Alto by Gia Coppola and James Franco; and participated as a speaker at the 2014 TED conference in Vancouver. Hynes’ impressive talents and career led to his recent work on Carly Rae Jepsen’s single “All That,” which Hynes and Jepsen debuted together last April on Saturday Night Live.

Gary Numan

The goth rock/darkwave god himself will be playing albums Replicas, The Pleasure Principle, and Telekon over three nights at Moogfest. Expect to hear his heavy synthesizer hooks through multiple effects pedals, and the Moog synth-based UK No. 1 hit “Are ‘Friends’ Electric?”. What more of a reason could you need to attend?

Check out the full lineup and schedule at Moogfest 2016.


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