The Harlem Shake Youtube video trend is finally beginning to fade out, and I’m sure everybody is thanking the heavens that the most overplayed song of 2013 is finally diving back into the depths from which it came from. However, in today’s social media society, once something goes viral, it is simply never the same. Rather than your typical David Guetta, Swedish House Mafia, Avicii, even Skrillex-type music that is often associated with rave culture, the world got to see a subgenre, trap music, and it became a sensation that literally took the world by storm. I swear, never in my life have I seen a Youtube trend so big, and it just makes me realize that I think the world is ready for the next step in music, which is to shy away from all the typical bullshit you hear on the radio. Drum’ n ’bass exists, gabber exists, liquid dubstep exists, epic trance exists, but sometimes I feel like its all lost in translation because the bigger artists making the more popular genres of music hog the spotlight. “Harlem Shake” proved that trap music, which is seriously such an overlooked and underplayed subgenre, can make it big. People who are passionate about EDM get sick of the same genres getting played out. Our world is more than the famous artists I have listed. Its about experimentation with sound and having fun. Many artists put together tracks and corresponding Youtube videos that are all supposed to be in good humor, just a little something I’ve noticed about EDM culture. A lot of people think raving is “bad” or “all about drugs”, but I think that this Harlem Shake takeover just showed the world that as “ravers” we’re just trying to listen to/ make good music, try new things, and have a fun time doing it. Who knows, maybe another obscure subgenre of EDM will make it viral. EDM is here to stay, and I think the more knowledgeable the world is about our culture and what we’re about, the better this not so little EDM world is gonna get.
Posts tagged ‘raves’
Once again, I was forced to go to my least favorite night club to enjoy some more great talent that I’ve never gotten to see before: Sander Van Doorn. Sander made a splash in the music soon in 2004 with his hit ‘Loaded’ and his since continued climbing the ladder to success in the EDM world. Before going to his show, I wasn’t really sure what to expect. I had tuned into his podcasts before, and to be honest, I wasn’t really feeling it. The music was a bit boring and it felt more like easy listening than something that truly made me want to get up and dance (which isn’t always a bad thing). I got talked into going to his show, rather than going by my own free will (thats what friends are for, right?). To be honest, I wasn’t completely blown away by his set, but it was still enjoyable. If you are a Sander fan, I would definitely recommend going and seeing him! Even if you aren’t familiar with him but you like progressive house, I would say go check him out. He spins trance and progressive house, and I appreciated the song selection in his set. I find that when I go to shows where this is the genre of the DJ, it all has the same trousey sound and for the most part, its just a countdown of the current top 40 trouse hits. I liked that Sander WASN’T trouse and was just really good and original progressive house. He played a lot of his own tracks in all the right places and overall I liked the flow of his set. I definitely don’t think Sander is for everybody, there’s wasn’t much electro in his set (which is currently trending in all DJ sets I’ve noticed), and that was actually a nice change of pace. I think he has a very unique sound. Going into his show, I knew what to expect and he met my expectations (but didn’t really succeed them). I guess from the gist of this article, you can tell I’m not all to impressed with him, but keep in mind this review is from someone that would not consider herself a Sander fan, just an outsider taking a peep inside. If he comes to your town, I would say go see him because he plays a unique set in comparison to all the other trance/ progressive house DJs out there, but if you miss him, I assure you you won’t be shedding any tears.
Seeing as W&W has been rising to fame fast quite recently, I was expecting a generic trouse set from them. On top of that, they were playing at my least favorite nightclub (Wild Knight in Scottsdale) and I was expecting the whole thing to be a clusterfuck. For the sake of people that read my blog though (or glance at my “articles” for 5 seconds at a time), I figured I would attend this show since I’ve never seen W&W live before and you guys might like to know if they are worth seeing live or not. The answer is yes. Yes, go see them live, yes they are amazing, yes they put on a wonderful performance. Rather than the same old melodic trance I am used to hearing from trance acts, it was more of a darker tech trance sound, and I loved it! The song selection was great and it was definitely a different type of trance experience for me, as most of the tracks they chose were non-vocal. They had a few classics tucked in there, but for the most part they played a lot of their own productions and had a really original-sounding set that I loved! The one complaint that I had (because I always have to complain about something) was their live mixing skills. Their interaction with the crowd was awesome, I really felt like they were paying attention to the audience and dancing along with us, but I don’t necessarily feel like their music reflected it. The build-ups and the break-downs weren’t all that intense and overall I felt like their set was really consistent, instead of making the crowd really go crazy and wowing us. The tracks they played were great, like I said earlier, but I felt like they didn’t do anything to change the energy of the crowd and rather than choosing drops that would make everyone go nuts, there weren’t many of those moments at all. I really love tech trance, and they killed it in that aspect, so I would definitely recommend seeing them live no matter what genre you’re into. They don’t get into the really trancey stuff and they also don’t get really into the electro stuff. They played a good mixture of both which resulted in a totally unique and darker sound. If this seems like something that would interest you, definitely do not hesitate buying your ticket if they’re ever in your city!
Going into Mat Zo’s set, I already knew what I was in store for. I know his reputation and I know his style, so my expectations for his set weren’t super high. I was expecting generic trouse (which is a guilty pleasure of mine) and I wasn’t expecting Mixmaster Mike-type skills. I was definitely surprised by Zo’s set and that he stuck to what he knew. Although he is signed to Anjunabeats record label, that label no longer represents the best in trance, but rather the best in progressive house. What I liked most about Zo’s set was that he stuck to some really great trouse songs instead of venturing into mainstream progressive house hits, which I was expecting. He vibed with the crowd and I was lucky enough to be front row so I could watch his every move (creepy I know). I wouldn’t say he was an absolutely amazing dj, because I was not overly impressed with his mixing skills. However, he kept the crowd engaged for the entire duration of his set, which delighted me. He was extremely into the music and I loved his friendliness and his interaction with the crowd. Being the total groupies we are, me and my friends stayed until the show ended and got autographs from him. Totally friendly and normal looking guy, which I think definitely helped with his stage presence and connecting to his fans. I had an awesome time and would definitely recommend seeing him if you like progressive house. If you are expecting a trancier set though, look somewhere else, Zo is not a trance DJ.
“Trouse”, the newest trend in EDM since dubstep is beginning to take over many of my favorite DJs, and I’m not happy. It started with Tiesto, progressed to Above & Beyond, Arty, Gareth Emery, and Marcus Schossow, and now has claimed a new victim: Tritonal. Each of these DJs started with strong roots in trance. However, because of the rising popularity of EDM and the transition into mainstream, a lot of artists are beginning to make their sounds more mainstream to appeal to bigger audiences. Many of my favorites, I’ve noticed, have changed their sounds and are beginning to sound more alike instead of maintaining the individuality that made me fall in love with them in the first place. “Trouse”, if you haven’t figured out the meaning of the word, is a combination of the words “trance” and “house”. To me, trouse sounds more like a progressive house set with bits and pieces of electro and trance, which is not what I want to hear when I see my favorite trance producers. As of late, I feel there are not many true trance acts out there, as many of them are following the new trend and abandoning their old sounds. As much as I don’t want to say it, I feel like Dash Berlin is next. I’m not sure who else will be hopping on the “trend train”, but I have a feeling many trance producers are going to begin selling out. I began losing my faith in trance culture when Above & Beyond made the transition; if Armin or Markus ever go trouse, I am giving up faith in humanity.