By Ramon Ramirez, special to the American-Statesman
Australian electronic prouder Flume emerged on the HomeAway stage Friday evening behind a towering black curtain, blue lights, white garb, and a trend-bucking Dell laptop. He also used a heavy-duty mouse — with a red roller ball — which laid next to his business-hours-worthy monitor, drum pad and a keyboard.
Some EDM DJs make it appear fluid and effortless, but Flume’s message was clear: Just because I’m not up here strumming power chords doesn’t mean you can hang with the technique.
The 24-year-old artist born Harley Edward Streten continued a culture war brewing for the past four ACL Fests, one that’s slowly turned the gospel tent into a neon dance party at a festival once known for baby boomer legends, roots rock and bohos like Ben Harper.
But whereas sets like 2015’s Grizz blowout swept up onlookers in the gooey joy like the honey that sticks out of its plastic container, here sun-bathing couples quarreled as bros in shades waved their palms in place.
Flume broke into the biz crafting a whole record via a laptop he owned in 2012; the kid can dial up the pressure with angelic tones and hypnotic pulse. He’ll flip a Lorde single into a midtempo banger, then dispense giant downtempo tracks from this year’s massive “Skin” record — an experimental and bold undertaking that features guest vocals from Beck.
“Hey Austin, come with me on this one,” Flume shouted.
In the back, a dad in a fishing shirt bounced his daughter on his shoulders during the mothership dips and bass-heavy landings. Here’s your future.