Indie bands are the hottest ticket in town these days, almost as hot as girls in bikinis. So the geniuses at Sports Illustrated have cooked up a brilliantly evil plan to pair the two together for their annual Swimsuit Edition this year.

According to Billboard, the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition 2012 will pair 17 models with corresponding up-and-coming independent artists. The feature will be included in a four-page spread in the print version of the magazine and will also be featured on a tablet edition and on the web.

In addition the magazine will be holding a two-day music festival in Las Vegas, titled Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Beauties & Beats. Ten of the 17 selected artists will participate in the Vegas festival, including Delta Spirit, Elan Atias & White Elephant, J. Roddy Walston & The Business, Little Hurricane, Maluca, Nick Waterhouse, Vonnegutt, Selebrities, White Denim and headliners The Black Lips.

Seven other artists will be featured editorially: Bosco Delrey, DJ A-Trak, Hanni El Khatib, Kito & Reija Lee, New Look, Rhye, Toro Y Moi and The newno2. Each artist will be paired with a different model in the magazine and online, with new or previously unreleased tracks from each respective artist.

Matt Vasquez, lead singer of Delta Spirit, says being featured by the magazine is “a big deal”. “Bands these days have to have a real 21st-century mentality. We don’t have an MTV really that sticks up for people, at least not in the capacity that it used to,” he said. “It’s very much the Internet and any readership that we can get in to let people know our band is good.”

Vasquez also admits he’s been a huge admirer of the Swimsuit Edition since back when model Kathy Ireland graced the cover. “I remember that was right when I started liking girls,” he said. “I remember that cover of her. … I think I started puberty early because of that.”

The feature debuts online on February 14th.