Outside Lands

“They’re going up by the inflatable squid.”

It wasn’t until D-Man shouted this that I actually took stock of our surroundings. The squid? That tiny fucking squid way up there? It seemed a mile away, within the heart of chaos and excess. I figured we’d lose those two for the rest of the night. “Meet at the empanada stand if you get lost”, we had said earlier.

The scene was grander than I had imagined – more people, bigger stages. The only other time I was in a confluence of energy so giant was Munich, six years ago.

Odesza was impressive. It was what it needed to be. In a way, they delivered what I expected them to – positivity, movement, energy – and it was fulfilling. Seeing them was long overdue.

The shirtless guy, however? The nutcase chugging wine, doing brainless sketches with his bandmates between songs? Even with flowebrother’s insight, I wasn’t prepared for Mac DeMarco. He was a maniac. A carefree goon. An accidental superstar. I wasn’t witnessing a polished band play for a paycheck, I was watching a crew of pals – jokesters – simply making music and having fun. Bravo, Mac, bravo.


Day Two brought sunshine, and with it, steadily flowing beer. When we gathered the motivation to leave the backyard and head to the park, we arrived to the experimental sounds of Bon Iver. It wasn’t the vibe we desired – too calming. Give us something to move to.

We found it at Jamie xx. Mesmerizing, intense and unpredictable, he wasn’t there to cater to the casual fan; he was there to craft a genuine DJ set. He played songs I’d never heard; songs that made the crowd uncomfortable; songs that gave me flashbacks to warehouses in southern Spain.  He did not play two of his biggest hits. As daylight faded and darkness took over, he turned the crowd into a frenzy, and I loved it. Charley didn’t quite get it. Sam was a goner. Everybody was doing something.


It’s a surreal feeling to see a performer after they’ve only previously existed ever so frequently within your headphones.  Since I first learned about Tash Sultana, she has captivated me. Her energy, her spirit, her flare. I saw her come alive on that final afternoon, and she did not disappoint. As the sun set – physically on the evening, metaphorically on the festival – we tapped our feet to the vibes. It was tribal, passionate, authentic.

I never even saw the damn empanada stand.

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The xx – On Hold (Jamie xx Remix)

Link in bio. Three words from Jamie XX that require an immediate detour in whatever you’re doing.

Last month The Boiler Room released a recording of Jamie XX’s  live set in Reykjavik. There’s the usual vaudeville attraction of watching unfamiliar people bump up against each other but compared to other Boiler Room’s (see Kaytranada’s production), it felt sweetly tame.

Except for about seven minutes when Jamie XX spins his remix of the XX’s On Hold. This morning he released the studio version, not on Spotify or Soundcloud, but on YouTube, because this experience is as much about the visuals as it is about the snaking bass.

Jamie xx’s In Colour – album of the year?

Jamboys (via a myserious hottie) first brought Jamie xx to The Aftermath in March when the Brit released his debut studio album, In Colour. Simplistic cover art, Jamaican steel drums, skateboard tricks in Loud Places’ music videoJust Saying‘s profound sadness, Young Thug’s verse in I Know There’s Gonna Be (Ima ride in that pussy like a stroller?) – In Colour has it all. And although Flowebro might chirp the Brit for being a cheap little hipster, there’s no way you can deny there’s something special going on with Jamie xx and his ability to consistently produce the freshest music. And that’s why come July 27 when he performs at San Francisco’s Bimbo’s 365 Club on a Monday night, I’m going to show up to work the next day a bit hung over.

Mysteriously absent on Soundcloud, stream the full album here. Album of 2015?