After bucketing water out of my tent with mugs I'd bought to drink tea with at one of last years festivals, I decided enough was enough. I agree that roughing it makes you appreciate it when you get to stay in a hotel where you use the mugs to actually drink tea from, but my time was now spent. Fast forward to an early morning eyes so sore you can hardly see flight to The States. Touch down, Texas.
Every year thousands of music geeks (I include myself in that stereotype) descend on Austin in Texas for South By South West. As reports from the UK speak of snow, out here it's beautiful blue skies and open road. As most are tucked up at home ranting on twitter about the weather, on the other side of the world Austins streets are paved with some of the worlds greatest musicians.
I always knew that SXSW was going to be a life changing trip and after rumours of Snoop Dogg, Prince and Justin Timberlake all being in town, history was about to be made. So many of Britain's great breaking artists are on this years line up. From Jake Bugg, Paloma Faith, and Lianne La Havas to bands Bastille and Palma Violets.
For the first seminar I decided to get my music tech head on and go and listen to Deadmau5 & Ritchie Hawtin. Two guys, two sofas and a discussion about how the music industry has evolved with more equipment available to 'noodle' with. They spoke about real music and not compromising a sound because of technology. Keeping the balance and making sure you still churn out tunes when you have bigger toys to play with. Two wise and extremely successful music Entreperneurs who have left a lasting impression within EDM and the thousands all over the world who have witnessed their mastery.
With the Vevo House throwing open it's doors to music badge holders its fully stocked bar, table tennis tables and banging bass line has made its name known across Austin. A queue that circled the block, last night it was the place to be. Not only for the free drinks but for the music. After being named as the BBC's Sound of 2013 sisters Haim were headlining. Turning up on stage an hour late their set was unbelievable. Girls and guitars rock. We know that but Haim have it on lock. They honestly have to be seen to believe how good they are. World class musicians, solid songs and the ability to make men's hearts melt. Their synchronised drum choreography kicks you in the heart and slaps you clean around the chops. Absolutely insane.
On to catch Huw Stephens hosting Willy Moon and Bastille at Latitude 30. The music industry crowd in abundance. With their recent number one album 'Bad Blood', Bastille are on fire. If you love their music, seeing them live is essential. A slow SXSW crowd were very quickly won round by their tight harmonies, shining melodies and endearingly sharp musical genius. Bastille, we love you.
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