X Fest to include wide array of rock bands this year

Written By Josh McCann

The annual music festival known as X Fest returns to Stage AE for an outdoor show on Sept. 9.  This year’s all-day and into the night rager features a diverse lineup of multiple genres including headlining alternative pop act Bastille.

It also includes metal slaying trio Highly Suspect, Southern roots rockers J Roddy Walston and The Business, the engaging alt hip hop act K Flay, and the LA based indie pop duo Friendship.

Abby Krizner, a disc jockey and host for 105.9 The X, discussed the wide range of groups that will rock Stage AE for X Fest.

“This lineup is a really good way of showing the diversity that we have at the station, but it also speaks to that aspect of everybody listening to a little bit of everything,” Krizner said. “Unlike other festivals, the show gives Pittsburgh fans a chance to see a wide variety of acts without the hassle of running around to see hundreds of bands.”

Bastille, coming off a successful second LP, are the headlining act. The band’s current tour includes six North American shows. In 2013, the band released “Bad Blood,” which led to headlining major festivals and launched them to alt rock success with their mix of heartfelt lyrics and melodic choruses.

Besides Bastille, Krizner is excited to see K Flay perform.

“K Flay’s album spoke to me the day I listened to it,” Krizner said. “I think I have an official girl crush on her. These newer bands really do resonate well with our audience.”

A portion of the X Fest ticket sales go to the Pittsburgh 412 Food Rescue. The mission of the 412 is to prevent good food from going to waste.

Hana Uman, the 412 Food Rescue program manager, stated how the local company makes a  difference within the community.

“We pick up donations of surplus food from restaurants, grocery stores, etc and deliver directly to nonprofit organizations,” Uman said. “We do it primarily through volunteers picking up and dropping off food.”

There is an opportunity for fans to win X Fest tickets through the Food Rescue. By donating items like rice, flour, dried beans, sugar or cooking oil, you will be entered for a chance to win X Fest and Steeler home opener tickets, along with gift cards to Moe’s Southwest Grille.

The event also showcases J Roddy Walston and The Business, who are hitting the road in preparation for their new LP “Destroyers of the Soft Life,” which features the slow burning alt pop single “The Wanting.” Upon the release of single “Heavy Bells” off of 2013’s “Extreme Tremors,” the band was thrust into the mainstream rock spotlight.

J Roddy Walston and The Business guitarist Billy Gordon asserted that the band will play some tracks from their upcoming LP, which they recorded in a bomb shelter-turned-lumber yard. Gordon is also ready to have a good time at X Fest.

“We’ve been doing this for a long time,” Gordon said. “We can still hang and party.”

Tickets for X Fest are available at Ticketmaster.com, which are $44 in advance.