SXSW 2017 | Riding Into Day 2 (in a Mazda) With Lil Yachty and Sofi Tukker

Photo: Patrick Green

The only thing that can get you out of a hotel bed after a late night at South By Southwest is the Austin’s iconic breakfast taco and the festival day party.

SXSW 2017 day 2 was no different as I crawled out of bed, put on my big boy pants and tucked in my dignity, venturing outside in search of nourishment of both body and mind. First stop was the Veracruz All Natural food trailer, where I scarfed down their trademark tacos faster than you can say “migas,” the Tex Mex staple, not the Atlanta hip hop trio.

Also: Recap | Pandora Showcase is the Highlight of Day 1 at SXSW Music Festival

Then, it was off to the Mazda Studio at Empire Control Room’s kick-off event to check out the much-hyped performance of Lil Yachty. The Mazda Studio was an impressive display, transforming the indoor/outdoor space into a virtual art house and car show gallery that merged sound and technology.

Photo: Patrick Green

Curated by Spin Magazine, the eclectic line-up featured Crave favorite Sofi Tukker, who were in prime time form despite the early afternoon set. Coming off a surprise Grammy nomination, the Instagram-worthy duo, who made a name for themselves at last year’s SXSW, always seem to be having a great time on-stage, which you can feel and hear, even more so when they went into a couple new dance-heavy songs that Tucker Halpern told me that they’ve been working on while on their first headlining tour across the globe. 

Photo: Patrick Green

The Drums followed their New York-mates with a performance that I could only hear because I was stuck in the VIP area where I was literally recharging (my phone) and for some reason only known to security had to wait in line within a line to get back into the concert area. I will have to catch the Drums at another showcase, but the new songs I did hear from their just-released album, Abysmal Thoughts, conjured up anything but that.

Photo: Patrick Green

The daytime festivities closed with Lil Yachty, the latest “it” rapper to rise to fame on social media. The Atlanta rapper known for his “bubblegum trap” music that samples sounds ranging from Mario Bros., Charlie Brown, and the startup sound of a GameCube console, kept the thirsty crowd waiting, which may have backfired on him. 

When he finally did hit the stage, Lil Yachty showed why his talent is undeniable and totally of the here and now. Slow and provocative with bedroom sounding beats, this is hip pop for the social media generation, both catchy and boldly amateurish, it’s easily packaged into sing-along anthems. The problem was not with the content, but with the delivery as Lil Yachty seemed to be on autopilot for most of the performance.

The rapper put some of the blame on the audience as he made countless references to not being used to seeing such a non-enthusiastic crowd as he trudged through his 30 minute plus set, checking off hits off Lil Boat. Overall, it was a fun set, but a lil disappointing.