Monday, August 29, 2011

Dancing Astronaut

I've been writing this blog for almost a year now and I want to thank all of you who have supported me and read my entries. From here on out, I will still be doing reviews & EDM blogging, only on a different website. Please bookmark and check daily for "the latest and greatest in house, electro house, progressive, electro, and dubstep". Thanks again for all of the love & support! -A5ia

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Deadmau5 at Hollywood Palladium

Last October I flew to San Francisco for Treasure Island Music Festival to see the legend that is formally known as Deadmau5. I was blown away by the positive crowd, intricate lighting, and his incredible song selection. However, when his set was cut short before even an hour, I was beyond devastated. Since the release of his album 4X4=12, which was a completely different style than the Canadian's usual electro hits, I still hadn't seen Zimmerman a second time but was elated upon hearing about his four-show residency at the Hollywood Palladium.

I was hoping that Friday's set would include some of his older upbeat tracks such as Hi Friend and Attention Whore, but Deadmau5's style has completely changed and he decided to take a different approach.  He only played songs that he produced/co-produced, which is really no surprise with his wide selection of bangers. The set included predictable hits such as The Reward is Cheese, Ghosts n Stuff, Raise Your Weapon, and Sofi Need a Ladder (Sofi even came out on stage to sing her part).

He started off the night in a neon green head and after a brief breather finished the set in a badass all-white version. The visuals were imaginative featuring images of his well-known cat Prof. Meowingtons over a game of Mario Brothers and backlit LED lighting spelling out words such as "Lets Do It LIVE" when Joel put his impressive live-mixing skills to use. He played for a full two hours but the energy was substandard and mildly melancholy. I actually preferred Zedd, the opening DJ, with his upbeat song selections such as Alesso's remix of Party Rock Anthem by LMFAO, a mashup of Wolfgang's Undertaker vs. 5th Symphony, and Avicii's Levels (ID). I was also thrilled to hear his popular remixes of Skrillex's Weekends and Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites which are far preferred over the originals.

Some favorites of the night from Deadmau5 include his mashup of Some Chords mixed with Tiny Dancer, Animal Rights feat. Wolfgang Gartner, and his edit of Daft Punk's Harder Better Faster Stronger. Also heavily influenced by Skrillex, he chose lots of dubstep (the Caspa remix of Kaskade & Deadmau5's I Remember) and trance-like inspired jams. Mau5 gave the mediocre set an even duller ending by closing with a drawn-out and extremely ineffective version of Strobe. Hopefully Zimmerman realizes soon that fans come to his shows to dance - not sleep. 

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

The King of Dirty Dutch

On Sunday night I made my way over to The Music Box Hollywood to see none other than DJ Chuckie. He blew me away at EDC Vegas with his prime song selections, mixing skills, and overall phenomenal energy so when he announced his Hollywood show, there was really no question.

He opened by debuting his brand new song Who's Ready to Jump which features his own vocal samples from EDC Vegas as the main "chorus". The crowd seemed to absolutely love the new song and of course I was happy reliving his stellar EDC performance. After requesting that he play my current favorite jam, Chuckie kept his word and song #3 was his remix to Mohombi's Bumpy Ride. He also played many other favorites such as Let the Bass Kick, Move it 2 the Drum (feat. Hardwell), his LMFAO remix I'm DJ Chuckie B*tch, his Chris Kaeser remix Who's In The House, and the Gregori Klosman remix to Avicii's Sweet Dreams (fell in love with this track when he first played it at EDC). He also played a sick version of Laidback Luke's Til Tonight mashed with Congrorock's Babylon that I had never heard before.

It's not only safe to say that he's the 'King of Dirty Dutch' but I'm about to give him another impressive title - my #1 favorite DJ. Way to go Chuckie, keep cranking out the bangers!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

First Gig

Yesterday was my first time deejaying a party ... and not just any kind of party - a pool party. Located in the backyard of a sick Brentwood mansion, I spent about 5 hours taking complete control and mixing together a set composed of all my current favorite jams. Included in my set was the new Wolfgang Gartner song Ménage à Trois, the sickest Nirvana remix of Smells Like Teen Spirit by DJs Snake & Mercer, the Michael Wood's remix of La Roux's In For the Kill, LMFAO's Party Rock Anthem (Alesso remix), and the Arno Cost remix of Moby's Lie Down in Darkness. Had an absolute blast and can't wait til the next opportunity to show my skills!

Friday, August 5, 2011

The EDC Experience

Last night I went to Rave Cinemas 18 (can't get over how fitting the name of the theater was) to see the first movie that really immerses viewers into the current mainstream rave culture - The EDC Experience. As an actual movie, it was pretty terrible. Although Insomniac puts millions of dollars into the production of their massive events, it's evident that they did not put much into the production of this documentary. However, they did accomplish their goal of exposing the EDM movement realistically without ever having to actually attend the Carnival. The cameras cut from live EDC sets of favorite DJs such as Kaskade, Laidback Luke, Moby, and Swedish House Mafia to footage of the performers, go-go dancers, fireworks, and all that goes into the assembly of an event so large. Most of the footage was taken from EDC 2010 in Los Angeles; the aeriel views were absolutely nuts! 

There were at least 20 cops surrounding the theater and they were being so strict with unnecessary security that viewers were not even allowed to bring their purses or wallets inside. It's a shame that the movie was cut from so many theaters after the Kaskade riots broke out at the premier but I'm sure when it comes out on dvd it will be in high demand. I'd even like my parents to see it, along with all other skeptics, just so that they can see what exactly EDC is all about. Aside from how the media portrays rave culture, this movement is about a generation coming together, embracing each other, listening to great music, being happy and showing love - bottom line.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Kaskade at Supperclub

I'm not exactly sure how I let this much of my life go by without seeing Kaskade spin, but now that I have I will forever be a fan. He is one of the first DJs I had ever heard of, due to the fact that we are both from the North Shore of Chicago, and for some reason I always seem to miss him when he's in town. But finally he announced a Hollywood club show and of course I was on board!

 I was a bit nervous about attending his show because hours prior he made national headlines when a riot broke out on Hollywood Blvd. after announcing to twitter that he was doing a free "block party" show following the EDC Experience movie premier. Unruly ravers apparently got violent and smothered a cop car, which is the type of behavior you may expect from Korn fans - not the mainstream angelic vocals of Kaskade. However, the mob of crazies eventually cleared out and a much more civil crowd gathered for his Supperclub performance.

I've been to Supperclub on many occassions to see popular DJs such as Donald Glaude and Benny Benassi, but never had I seen the club more packed than it was for Kaskade (and let me remind you that it was a Wednesday). I'd say 50% of the tracks were his own, including his newest hit Eyes featuring Mindy Gledhill. The other half were current popular jams such as SHM's Save The World, his remix of Skrillex's Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites, Laidback Luke's remix of Benassi's Cinema, and the Nicky Romero remix of Green Velvet's Flash.

Some of the highlights included Will.I.Am coming up on stage, as well as Paris Hilton, along with the dozens of face-painted gogo dancers and acrobats. But the best part was getting to go up in back where the lasers are controlled and learn how to change the colors and patterns of the lights. Damn, do I give a mean light show! :)

Another epic night for the books...

Monday, July 18, 2011

Avicii at Music Box

Friday night was my second time seeing up and coming producer Avicii (Tim Bergling) spin live at The Music Box Hollywood. Perfect timing too because earlier in the day the new Leona Lewis track Collide was released, which caused a huge controversy due to the fact that the tune she is singing over is undeniably Avicii's Penguin. For more on the Leona Lewis vs. Avicii debate, check out this article: avicii-leona-lewis-controversy-fade-darkness

Of course he played most of his original tracks including Penguin/Fade into Darkness, ID (Levels), and his famous remix of Armin's Drowning. My favorite surprise of the night was getting to hear his new track Enough is Enough (Don't Give Up on Us), here's the link: Enough is Enough. However, I still have the same problem with Avicii that I had when I first saw him back in December- as a producer he works absolute wonders but as a DJ (who for the most part only plays his own tracks) he weaves from upbeat high-energy tracks straight into slow trance-like songs; I guess it's just personal preference but I prefer DJs to start off with their slower tracks (if they must include them at all) then gradually raise the key and energy-levels throughout the set.

Whether or not I was completely satisfied with his song order, he's clearly making a name for himself, with two sold-out shows in a row and lines down the block, everybody wanted to get inside and see the hype that is Avicii. Some highlights of the night? Avicii made it rain. The Music Box had sprinklers from the ceiling cover the crowd in water, which was awesome for my sweaty-mess of a self after dancing for hours but I could tell some other fans weren't too thrilled. Another awesome moment is when Avicii bent down under his tables to smoke a joint with a couple friends. He's got an undeniable stage presence and a dedicated fan base so I know he's only moving up. I can't wait to see what happens with the whole Leona Lewis controversy, hopefully he decides to sue.

*Just bought tickets to Chuckie at Music Box, Ingrosso at Wavehouse, Electric Zoo Music Festival in NYC, and Monster Massive - check back for lots of reviews :)