SXSW Presents: Special Explosion

It's been nearly a decade since dreamo (that's dream-pop and emo, in case you were wondering) act Special Explosion erupted onto the scene, and we couldn't be more happy to have them after all these years. They take out the whininess typically associated with emo music. Instead, they keep all of that emotion and channel it through tender indie rock with lucid atmospheres and textures.

Even during a time when the world around them, in a musical and real life sense, was unreliable and confusing, Special Explosion maintained their collective head, supported by their four pairs of shoulders. With many releases behind them, their late 2017 album To Infinity can be considered debut, as far as full-length records are concerned. It provides 10 tracks worth of their adept instrumentation, recalling earlier days of Death Cab for Cutie and Sufjan Stevens but always sounding like their own.

They're the kind of band you see and fall in love with, over and over again, and that's part of what makes them so special.