Every year for SXSW, we come up with a short list of bands that we all enjoy but, for whatever reason, have a really low popularity score. We call them "value artists" because we believe they will deliver quality live shows without making you wait in long lines at the venues they're playing at.
In case you're wondering, we get our popularity score from Spotify and normalize it to our simple 1 to 5 rating system (5 being the most popular). If a band isn't in Spotify, they get a lower score because that's a good sign that they're not well known. This year's most popular band in our system is Pitbull because, you know, everyone these days is goin' timber.
For this list, we first let our scripts pick the top 50 value artists according to, well, math, and then us humans combed through that long list to find what we consider the top 10 bands that are still flying under the radar. So if you're looking to be on the bleeding edge of band knowledge or you just don't want to wait in lines, here's the list for you: