A GROUP of pop and rock bands and two movies from Scotland are to appear this week at one of the world's most influential cultural festivals in the US.

Meursault, Young Fathers, Prides, Withered Hand, Honeyblood, Casual Sex and Holy Esque will be at the South by South West (SXSW) festival in Austin, Texas, as well as the films God Help the Girl and For Those in Peril.

A special event, Showcasing Scotland, backed by the nation's art body, Creative Scotland, and the Association of Independent Music will take place on Friday.

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God Help the Girl and For Those In Peril will screen as part of The SXSW Film Conference & Festival.

Paul Wright, the director of For Those in Peril, said: "It's really exciting for us all to be part of this year's SXSW festival. We could not have picked a better place for the film to have its North American premiere than at a festival known for showcasing exciting new talent from around the world."

Bands are often spotted at the festival and signed by labels and agents, or improve their reputation within the US.

David Weaver, development officer at Creative Scotland, said: "The seven acts we are supporting really showcase the diversity in Scottish music right now.

"All of the bands are fantastic in different ways, both on record and live, and I'm really looking forward to seeing them perform in Austin. Each act is set for a great year ahead."

Following its recent world premiere at Sundance Film Festival and then at Berlin Film Festival, Stuart Murdoch's first feature film God Help the Girl is screening at the Paramount Theatre on Saturday.

The film's co-producer Carole Sheridan, from Singer Films, said: "SXSW is a cool festival and we are hopeful the film will be loved by the music and film fans that attend."