It's been one long, thrilling and occasionally bumpy trip to SXSW for Odd Future, and the L.A. rap group's gig at Billboard's Saturday night (Mar. 19) showcase was no different.
After making nearly a half-dozen appearances through the SXSW week that kept everyone talking, Odd Future took the stage at Buffalo Billiards and barely made it through three songs before cursing out the crowd, the venue, and yes, even Billboard, and then finally stormed offstage. From the moment the group started its set with "Sandwitches," things weren't quite going as planned.
Since Odd Future's Austin show at the Thrasher's party on March 18 -- during which members of the group leapt wildly onto the crowd from atop the speakers -- chaos has been the norm. However, the level of rowdiness as Odd Future began its Billboard set Saturday was apparently not up to Tyler, the Creator's standards. Less than a minute into opener, "Sandwitches," he stopped the show and began berating the audience.
"I broke a n*gga's arm. I cracked a n*gga's skull. I'm on the cover of Billboard. And this is all you got?," Tyler heckled the crowd. "What the f**k is wrong with all of you?" He then directed his ire towards staff manning the soundboard. "Mic number two is f**ked up. Fix that s**t," he demanded. After getting through a restarted "Sandwitches," "Yonkers" and barely another song, the group slammed their mics to the floor and walked off, leaving fans no choice but to exit the venue without seeing the show they'd hoped for.
Just minutes after the aborted performance, Tyler made his thoughts on the incident known via Twitter. "Billboard Is Cool. That Show Was Stupid. Thanks to the Fans and N***as that Was There In The Front," he wrote "Wasn't Billboards Fault. F**K THAT CLUB."
Odd Future's Billboard gig came just a couple of hours after the group made a surprise appearance at the FADER Fort by Fiat, where it had just headlined the night before. As the group tore through "Sandwitches" Tyler was struck squarely on the right side of his face by a large soda bottle, forcing the show to briefly come to a stop as he and his bandmates searched for the culprit in the audience.
Despite its abrupt ending, Billboard's Saturday night showcase featured a full lineup of emerging hip-hop acts. Mississippi rapper and Island Def Jam artist Big K.R.I.T. rocked with his live band, Griod and performed tracks from his acclaimed "K.R.I.T. Wuz Here" debut album, including the Adele-sampling "Hometown Hero." Curren$y and Big Sean also played memorable sets, and Detroit MC Black Milk performed with a live band of his own. And Tanya Morgan kicked off the night with tracks from its latest album, "Brooklynati," and solo releases.
It was the last of a four-night stand for Billboard at SXSW, as acts like A Place to Bury Strangers, The Pains of Being Pure at Heart, Screaming Females, Oh Land, Young the Giant all played memorable shows.