SCOTTISH acts are gearing up for shows at the acclaimed music festival SXSW in Austin, Texas this March.

The American music and arts festival is well known as a champion for breakthrough talent and this year will see a strong line-up of Scottish bands on the bill. Six bands supported by Creative Scotland will perform at the 2014 Scottish Music Showcase which will be hosted by Creative Scotland in association with the Scottish Music Industry Association.

Running between Tuesday 11 to Sunday 16 March, Young Fathers, Prides, Withered Hand, Honeyblood, Casual Sex and Holy Esque are the six bands chosen as part of the Scottish Music Showcase.

Caroline Parkinson, Director of Creative Development, Creative Scotland, said: “These six acts represent some of the hottest prospects to be emerging on the international scene. SXSW is an important platform to showcase Scotland’s vibrant contemporary music scene to international audiences.  Through making connections and performing to industry representatives all six acts will use SXSW as a platform to take their music into international markets.”

Formed in 2008, Young Fathers unique musical style reflects their diverse backgrounds. Last year they signed to US record label Anticon and released two EPs: TAPE ONE & TAPE TWO. Their new album, DEAD, will be released internationally in February with Big Dada in the UK, Anticon in the States and Tugboat in Japan.  Their showcase in SXSW will follow an extensive tour of the UK and Europe and will be followed by more touring in the USA. Their acclaimed appearance earlier this year at SXSW13 brought offers from more festivals across the UK & Europe and confirmed licensing deals with Tugboat and Big Dada.

Formed in 2013 and signed to Island Records Prides are a Glasgow based band that burst on to the internet with Out Of The Blue. After a summer of playing festivals, from Loopallu to Reading and Leeds and finding themselves playlisted on BBC Radio 1, Prides are now back in the studio recording an EP.

The long awaited second album ‘New Gods’ by Edinburgh based folk-rock troubadour Withered Hand will be released in March via Fortuna POP! (UK/Europe) and Slumberland (US/Canada). The album was part funded by Creative Scotland, produced by Tony Doogan (Belle & Sebastian, Mogwai, Mountain Goats, Teenage Fanclub), and features guest appearances from King Creosote, Eugene Kelly of The Vaselines, Belle & Sebastian and Frightened Rabbit.

Honeyblood are the Glasgow-based two-piece of Shona McVicar on drums and Stina Marie Claire Tweeddale on vocals and guitar. Since their formation in early 2012 the duo have supported acts including Sleigh Bells, Crocodiles, Palma Violets and Deap Vally. Signed to FatCat the band released their first vinyl Bud.  Honeyblood are heading out on a US tour supporting label mates We Were Promised Jetpacks straight after SXSW.

The brainchild of lead guitarist Sam Smith, Casual Sex formed at Sam’s workplace The Green Door Studio in the West End of Glasgow. The band’s showcase at SXSW 2014 follows a successful trip to America in October where they performed at the internationally renowned CMJ Music Marathon in New York and toured with Franz Ferdinand. Following the release of their five track EP ‘Bastard Beat EP’ in October 2013 through We Can Still Picnic, the band are currently working on their new album which is due for release in Autumn 2014.

Holy Esque formed in 2011 by four young Glaswegians: vocalist and guitarist Pat Hynes, Keir Reid on Keyboard, Guitarist Hugo McGinley and drummer Ralph McClure. Following the release of their self-titled debut EP, Holy Esque went on to tour across Europe with The Raveonettes, while 2013 then saw the release of the single ‘St‘ and appearances at Glastonbury Festival and SXSW. Their debut album is due for release in 2014.