You can drive yourself nuts trying to chase a scoop at SXSW, and there's no shortage of rumours to get you running all over the city.
Sure, it seemed plausible that Neil Young would make a surprise appearance at his wife, Pegi Young's, gig, but he didn't, and our time would've been better spent checking out new bands. Similarly, trekking out to the river in the middle of the night because of whispers that Fucked Up were doing a guerrilla show only led to an unintended nap on the grass.
Likewise, Nas's surprise appearance with Damian Marley sparked speculation that he'd do his own set somewhere, but no dice. At the very least, we expected Hole's comeback show to provide a train wreck or two. We couldn't get past the gargantuan lineup outside, but apparently we didn't miss much anyway.
Instead, the best moments came from stumbling across great showcases while wandering the streets. Unlike similar festivals in Toronto and Montreal, Austin has a relaxed attitude about noise bylaws. Simply walking around and listening provides you with more than enough leads to chase. And once you're in that frame of mind, you can relax and enjoy the music rather than constantly worry that you're missing out.