XA – Music Export Award as Springboard for Austrian Newcomer Bands

7. September 2018
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Nominees include Pressyes, Dives, Viech and Kids N Cats – jury evaluation and award ceremony at the Waves Vienna Music Festival. Last year’s winner Cari Cari about her career development since winning the award in 2017. 

“For us the award has come at exactly the right time and is a giant step in our so far very successful internationalisation”, report last year’s winners Stephanie Widmer and Alexander Köck. Together they form the band Cari Cari, which captivated music fans last year with their combination of Digeridoo, Jew’s Harp and unique sound. “The XA is particularly distinguished by the fact that it starts exactly where musicians need it. Not only their appearances at important showcase festivals like Eurosonic Noorderslag, The Great Escape or Primavera Sound in Barcelona testify to the lasting effect of the award. “Also in Austria our perception by fans, critics and media has improved a lot”, the two musicians explain.

For the second consecutive year the music export prize “XA” will be awarded within the Waves Vienna Music Festival. The award is an initiative of mica – music austria, Austrian Music Export, SKE, FM4 and Waves Vienna. Nine nominees have the chance to win the award and will be judged during their performance at the festival. The winner will receive prize money of 3,500 euros and the assurance of Austrian Music Export, FM4 and Waves Vienna to support the Act in the following year – among other things by integrating it into partner festivals and showcases.

Nine nominees and nine jury members at Waves Vienna 2018

Nine artists were nominated for this year’s award from the 30 Austrian bands performing at the Waves Festival: the garage punks Dives, singer and producer Pressyes, the electro-pop band Kids N Cats, the Viennese indie formation Mickey, the Upper Austrian indie band Like Elephants, the Styrian band project Viech, the Salzburg boys from Please Madame, the Viennese duo Dramas and the Viennese Thirsty Eyes.

During the three festival days, the performances of the nominated bands will be judged by a jury of experts. The jury is formed by six international jury members: Akos Remetei (Sziget Festival), Jan Clausen (Factory 92), Karla König (c/o pop), Mariusz Herma (beehype), Luis Soares (Rock in Rio), Dan Koplowitz (Friendly Fire Licensing) as well as the local journalists and organizers Susi Ondrusova (FM4), Amira Ben Saoud (The Gap) and Andrina Dolinsek (Acoustic Lakeside). After all the votes have been cast, the prize will be presented to the winning band on the last day of the festival, Saturday, 29 September, at 11 pm at WUK