The Royal Suite at the Al Raha Beach Hotel

Upon arrival at the Al Raha Beach Hotel, it turned out that there were no regular rooms available anymore so they compensated it with the keys to their best suite; The Royal Suite. It is spectacularly big. One massive master bed room / sitting room, one large bedroom bigger than most hotel rooms, a sleeping room for the maid, a kitchen, 3 bathrooms, a dining room and a sitting room larger than most big city apartments. 4 balconies overlooking the Persian Gulf. The photos don't really do it justice but it sure is fun.

My SXSW New Music top pick: The Asteroids Galaxy Tour

At SXSW I listened to a fair number of bands that I had never heard before and this year my top pick is The Asteroids Galaxy Tour from Copenhagen, Denmark. I saw them twice, once at Emo's Annex on Thursday night and once in the early evening at Maggie Mae's. Both performances were high energy with infectious melodies. The songs are danceable with a hint of Motown and Soul sampled into them. This is a clip from the performance at Maggie Mae's, the sound doesn't do justice to the live performance.

The band appears to have two core members: Mette Lindberg and Lars Iversen, with others added for live gigs, but I found the horn and rhythm sections particularly strong and essential for their sound. Here is a better live recording:

What the band is most know for it seems is that a clip from their song "Around the Bend" was used for an ipod touch commercial. The song is one of their stronger numbers and demonstrates how infectious their tunes are. Here is their official music video.

They have an album named Fruit that will be released in May of this year. Until then we'll have to do with the EP they released earlier which you can get from Amazon:

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The new album will also include the Sun Ain't Shining No More: