DECADENCE NYE 2017
NEW YEAR’S EVE: the culmination of the EDM show season peaks here, all over the world. Every city and big nightclub vies for the hottest lineup of DJs to bring the crowds for celebrating the ball drop. With most of the big talent flocking to places like LA and Vegas, and to the many huge long-standing 3-day festivals, no one really expected for Arizona to be on everyone’s radar for ringing in the new year. Since the day Porter Robinson was announced (an elusive entity always, but most especially for NYE) us here in AZ felt so proud. Several years back it was hard to even get moderately popular bands & artists to make stops here, and now we got to host the most LIT 2017 New Year’s celebration in the country. Relentless Beats continues to slay us with the incredible quality and quantity of shows--it is because of them that Arizonan EDM lovers have been able to thrive and share the magical experience that is a bigtime electronic music show with friends. It has helped nurture a beautiful community of ravers and fans that then connects us with those same turnt communities around the world.
When I thought of seeing Disclosure, I imagined the dancy, groovy, emotional music that has helped build their own little kingdom in the world of house. Totally wrong: it was so much deeper and harder than expected--and that much better because of it. I hope this side of Disclosure comes out in their future releases...
Oh Slushii <3 He plays such a well balanced blend of trailblazing, face-melting drops, and his sugary-sweet bounce (such as his new track with Ookay, who killed it at the next set!) Slushii’s popularity is one of the fastest growing I’ve seen, and he definitely brought the heavy bangers out as the opener to one hell of a weekend.
This was my second time seeing Porter Robinson and man, were they completely different sets. The best DJs are the most innovative--the ones who are always evolving and improving their craft. Porter is a widely viewed as the modern EDM “god” because he does exactly this. This set was incredible in that instead of blending transition tracks into his discography, the selected tracks were really the showcase, enhanced by the ever-changing versions of his own tracks. This may correlate with Porter's recent disowning of all but 11 of his tracks. I really don’t think “Fresh Static Snow” has ever been played live the same way. Porter Robinson is every aspiring DJ’s dream mentor, no matter the genre, just because of how much he has mastered this craft.
All of us kids juuuuust barely too young to remember the days when Deadmau5 dominated the electronic scene had just a vague sense of what to expect from the Father of Electronic. What we got what we should have expected: pulsing trance that never went too soft or too hard. There was a disconnect between the crowd I belonged to and the crowd that came for Deadmau5. However, we all loved it just the same and know to recognize unmatched talent when we see it.
Instead of making it big and changing just enough things to disinterest many of your grassroots fans, as many DJs do, Vanic remains one of the few that uses his popularity to full advantage. He makes better music when he can collab with better artists, and when his stages and number of subs double in size he brings his music to par. Seeing Vanic any time is great. But hearing the tracks that I know and love made bassier and seeing the out-of-this-world light production increased my love of his artistry and respect him as well.
Jackal was one of my long-awaited first time sets, and the grimey trap he brought to the Sapphire Stage was exactly what I dreamed. His drops were bigger than life for me… I can only imagine how new fans felt when the bass hit.
DJ Snake is always a crowdpleaser. With so many incredible collaborations put out this year, millions of records sold (the single most streamed song ever is his track “Lean On” with Major Lazer) his set of festival bangers began the final hours of countdown to the ball drop.
For the coveted midnight set, I couldn’t have been more happy with Jauz's set. It was beautifully balanced with deep house, trap, bass, rap, dubstep AKA the encompassed music taste of everyone there. More bangers in one set than in any three sets before him combined. The only word that matches the build-up to 2017 is magical. I knew that it’s going to be an amazing year when the first song I heard in the new year was RL Grime’s “Core”, my favorite.