(SXSW 2014 flavoured!) Bands to Watch #276: Tourist

By on Friday, 6th December 2013 at 12:00 pm

What never ceases to amaze me is the number of electronic and DJ acts that get shouts to SXSW. It makes sense though: who else will keep the bodies, in their various states of inebriation, moving, bumping and grinding into the wee hours, but these titans of technology? One such whiz is Tourist, the electronic brainchild of one Londoner William Phillips.

Having been signed late this year to 2013 Mercury Prize-nominated and fellow electro heads Disclosure, Phelps has already made waves on both sides of the Atlantic. While it might have been a no-brainer for Disclosure to have Tourist live at their Warehouse Project night in Manchester last month, Phillips’ appearance at the inaugural Mountain Oasis electronic festival this autumn in October 2013, alongside heavyweights Nine Inch Nails and Gary Numan, is no small feat. NPR recorded his performance in Asheville, North Carolina, and you can listen to it here. I guess he made a big enough impression, as he’s been invited to showcase at next year’s SXSW in Austin.


With two EPs to his name – the ‘Placid Acid’ EP in 2012 that you can get for free from this previous MP3(s) of the Day post and this year’s ‘Tonight’ – he certainly has the talent in him to put out an entire album of new material. How to describe the music? While title track ‘Placid Acid’ on his debut EP is exactly as advertised – a gorgeously chill slow build-up of epicness – the otherworldly charms of ‘Jupiter’ and head boppiness of ‘Forgive’ prove he’s not a one-trick pony. The ‘Tonight’ EP sees Phillips taking a turn to more upbeat (handclaps!) and sounding more industrial than the debut, though for sure based on these releases alone, the kind of dancing I’m thinking you’re likely to see at Tourist shows is of the languid, fluid, beautiful creature variety. Then again, track ‘Together’ revealed from upcoming EP ‘Patterns’ seems to indicate for his next release, he’s going into higher octane, faster tempo territory. Either way, you’re in for a good show if you see him when he stops in your town. Or, if you’re lucky like us to be going to SXSW, if you have the good fortune to catch him in Texas in March.


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[…] Read the rest of my Bands to Watch on Tourist here. […]

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