January 4, 2012 at 10:56 am

Find Your Next Favorite Band with SXSW, Last.fm, and Spotify


Lastsx.sw hooked me up with some truly decent recommendations for this year based on my Last.fm account.

Update: SXSW appears to have forced this site to shut down.

The holidays are over, leaving us with 356, 339, and 357 shopping days until Christmas, Hannukkah, and Kwanzaa respectively. Let’s use that time productively, shall we?

You might not want to think about this now, having recently braved the crowded malls and shopping centers, but the massive, sprawling, SXSW music, tech, and film festival begins in a mere 65 days.

Many bands and panels have already been announced, including Evolver.fm‘s hotly-anticipated guide to Music Apps Gone Wild. That means it’s not too early to start deciding which bands you want to see, if you’re lucky enough to take the trip to the Austin, Texas-based festival this year. But even if you plan to skip SXSW, there’s no reason you can’t still mine its schedule to find your next favorite band.

Metallica, Duran Duran, and other recent headliners aside, many bands play SXSW because they are new, and need attention. Maybe they need your attention. Maybe you need them, too. A new year calls for new tunes.

To that end, each spring sees a new crop of tools that let you apply your personal taste to the SXSW artist list to find bands to see, or at the very least, hear from afar. Lastsx.sw is the best we’ve seen this year so far.

EarthPeople cobbled together the nicely-designed Lastsx.sw by grabbing your favorite artists from Last.fm (you are scrobbling, aren’t you?), finding similar artists in the SXSW 2012 artist list, and presenting you with handy links so you can hear those artists on Spotify and check out their official websites.

Lastsx.sw worked great for me — in fact, I’m enjoying some new (to me) stuff courtesy of the site right now in Spotify and scrobbling it to both Facebook and Last.fm, but that’s a different story. Also, I may never have realized that old fave The Wedding Present are playing SXSW this year, so now I have that to look forward to.

Your mileage may vary, especially if you don’t scrobble the music you’re listening to from iTunes/Spotify/MOG/Hype Machine/etc., in which case Last.fm will have no idea what you like. But if you do scrobble, whether or not you’re headed to Austin this year, Lastsx.sw warrants a listen.

(Thanks, Martin)