Keep Austin Weird. Thats their motto, and thats why I love it. This past week I went back to my native land of Texas to DJ for the annual South by Southwest festival and conference. With everyone reviewing the big acts like The Strokes, Kanye, Snoop Dog and the Foo Fighters, I will tell you about the lesser known, undiscovered, underground acts which I tend to prefer.
Beardyman: This native of the UK creates an entire song using his mouth and a loop station – the drums, bass, trumpets, cymbals and even singing! Beat boxing to songs about marihuana, Charlie Sheen and girls, it’s hard to explain the musical and comedic genius that encompasses this guy, so this video will help elaborate.
Watch out for him at Coachella this year.
DJ Fashen: it was great to see this LA based DJ/Producer mixing and scratching records. Fashen is absolutely brilliant technically and musically. This guy always know how to keep the crowd hype and the girls dancing.
We stumbled upon the most terribly run afterparty I had ever experienced. I’ve been to my share of warehouse parties, but this building was ridiculous. I should’ve known when I saw bags of ice melting outside. Janky turntables, busted up extension cords, the only lighting for that run down garage was a pair of dangling christmas lights that were later torn down. But people wanted free booze nevertheless. So I faked the funk and had fun with friends.
Word must’ve gone around that the first afterparty was really lame because all the DJs that were scheduled for the next night were at another party. Have you ever partied after hours at a Mall?
At first we were skeptical because the mall in itself was shady and somewhat abandoned. We still managed to sneak our way through the front of the line and got our wristbands. After we walked in to what used to be a Forever 21 with smog machine, bright lights and free alcohol, I knew this party was done right.
Drop the Lime: Founder of the label Trouble & Bass out of New York, I couldn’t get enough of his 50′s rockabilly inspired tunes, dirty basslines, harmonica solo, vocal drops, and killer hair style. I had never heard anything like this before and so naturally asked him, where have you been all my life?! to which he just smiled and I swoon.
The next day I went to the AM only party which was probably my favorite. With a lineup like Sub Focus, Skrillex, MSTRKRFT, and 12th Planet, the line to get in went around the block for 3 hours before show time. When the Mohawk started turning people down, fans jumped the wall!
12th Planet: You can add hype man to the title of producer and DJ. I love the energy from this LA based artist. He must be on a crazy stage diving bender, but I personally think he loves all the groping that goes on with the stage dives. I saw this guy jump so many times to the hands in the air of the bass crazed kids like it was going out of style. he even pushed Bam Margera! I guess if Steve Aoki’s doing it…
I will try it one day. catch him at Coachella too.
I’m approximating 12th Planet’s high stage dives at 25, maybe even more than Nate Dogg shout outs/tributes over the week. Its a toss up , but I think the recently deceased rapper wins this one slightly. too soon? ok. RIP Nate Dogg
Riots you missed but can now see on youtube:
Screeching Weasel frontman Ben Weasel punching a female fan
This jaded punk rock old man would not shut up about rants against the media and Austin and blah blah. Its no wonder a fan threw an ice at him that caused him to punch her in the face. Watch it before it gets taken down by violating terms and conditions like all the good videos do.
Death from Above 1979 fans riot outside Beauty Bar
Who knew that this one album band that broke up a few years ago would cause such caos in Austin? The Beauty Bar certainly didn’t. Check out the crazy video footage of the crowd bringing the fence down. Police officers on horses, tasers going off, mace being expelled, and rent-a-cops using extreme force to quell the crowd who couldn’t get inside the tiny patio venue.
hopefully fans will have no mace in the face when they play Coachella this year.
SXSW I thank thee for bringing me back to play every year, to catch up with old friends, make new friends, have fun times, and last but certainly not least, listen to great music.