Live: Audiotistic Festival

Talib and Hi-Tek. Fire.

Talib and Hi-Tek. Fire. PHOTOS: AH

The line-up spoke for itself: Talib Kweli. Hi-Tek. Kid Cudi. Daedalus. Rusko. A-Trak. Bassnectar. Nero. The Cool Kids. Flosstradamus. N.A.S.A. One of the most unique collections of MCs and DJs in recent history all came together this past weekend, collectively lifting San Bernardino, CA’s NOS Center into the atmosphere.

Biggest surprise of the show: Nero.

Biggest surprise of the show: Nero. PHOTO: Ian Hayes

25,000 heads, hipsters, ravers, and audiophiles converged upon the formerly quiet town, making peace with one another throughout the day and night--an interesting mix of lifestyles and music interests that, surprisingly, worked. Plus, with everything from Euro-fashion slaves and teenage dance vixens, to inland CA shards and SoCal bros walking the streets en route to the complex, it made for one incredible people-watching scene in the semi-desert sun …

Love, love, love...

Love, love, love...

By keeping the numbers relatively lower (compared to some of the other, more out-of-control “Massives” or large nocturnal music scenes during the summer), the scene was less intense and more communal, with the vibe’s ebb and flow kept in check by the never-ending 4 stages of sound.


On the come up. N.A.S.A.

The focus was squarely on the music however, with highlights including the near-infallible Talib and Hi-Tek leading the way. They’re a long way out from the OG collaborations of the past, but neither has lost a step--Kweli’s still as coherent and viciously poignant as ever. Otherwise, add the above-mentioned names to your list as soon as you can. You’ll probably be hearing their tracks laced throughout the coming vid season, and even if you’re not ready to party til dawn, this shit will definitely get you hyped to ride. ~AH

Parting shot: Aftermath.

Parting shot: Aftermath.