I sat back in my seat aboard the Amtrak train headed towards Albany, NY with my I-Phone in hand, back pack on the seat, and the soothing sounds of Borgore ringing in my ears. The next two weeks were going to be a non-stop thrill ride of lights and sounds. I was headed to see Kill Paris, Big Gigantic, Tommy Trash, and Tiesto.
First on my list was the Big Gigantic show with Kill Paris as an opener. I decided not to take my notepad in this time so I would focus on the atmosphere and music, rather than my own thoughts. This turned out to be harder than I thought it would be. As soon as Kill Paris appeared on stage I reached into my pocket to pull out my notepad…. Anyway, my sorrow was soon swept away with any doubt I had of Kill Paris as a performer. His combination of 80's pop music with today's modern glitch-hop sound melted together so perfectly that I kind of wished that 80's pop was still on the radio, but then I snapped out of the trance and remembered how bad it was by itself. His performance was flawless, and he even threw in a trap remix of “Sandstorm” by Darude that caught everyone off guard.
But then the big guns came on stage, or maybe the gigantic guns? Big Gigantic came out swinging for the fences. I had only heard a few songs by them off their album “A Place Behind the Moon” but I knew big, gigantic things were about to go down. Dominic Lalli the saxophone player/producer is the hardest working EDM performer that I have ever seen. His saxophone soared above the music, and he somehow DJ'd at the same time. The drummer, Jeremy Salken, was just as impressive. He did not miss a beat the entire show, nor did he take a break. For an hour and a half those two performed their big, gigantic hearts out. They are a must see to anyone who calls themselves true EDM lovers. They destroyed my prior knowledge of what was possible for EDM.
The next week I was set to see Tommy Trash and Tiesto at the Times Union Center, located in the heart of Albany. It was Tiesto's College Life Tour extravaganza! This show was bound to be epic, with a hint of orgasmic. The arena was filled with college students hyped on Red Bull, and rolling on Molly, or Ecstasy, or maybe both. Either way, MDMA is one hell of a drug among ravers. But I was hear for the music not the drugs. The floor of the arena filled quickly with people pushing towards the front while the opening acts were playing. Finally after a few hours of waiting Tommy Trash took the stage. I had only heard good things about him, but I wanted to make sure for myself. Were my sources correct? Sadly the answer is…… no. His stuff was good, but easy, fun, but simple, loud, but well just loud. I was not impressed by his transitions, light show, or stage presence. He had no surprises, not twists and turns, and then he tried to make it seem like he was doing a lot up there by just waving his hair around. I began to think, maybe I judge House musicians a bit tougher than others. Then I realized that there are plenty of House musicians whom I believe perform great, but Tommy Trash was not one of them. He needs some spice in his act, as well as in his music. Luckily I had Tiesto on next.
Tiesto. We all know him, we all love him, we all want to be him, but sadly we cannot. I stood in the crowd being continuously pushed around by drunks or rollers that had no idea what was going on anymore, but I knew. It was time for the main event. Tiesto came on stage with lights blaring, holding the mic, yelling out into the audience. Once he started I knew that this was going to be a great performance. He was not afraid to do whatever the hell he wanted. I will say this though, I was a little disappointed. Tiesto did not play any of his older Trance music, which is one thing that I loved about him personally. He revolutionized EDM with Trance, but this show proved that he had strayed from his roots. It's okay though, I understand that people change, they evolve into hopefully better things. I think that he should have stuck with Trance, but who am I to judge one of the greatest EDM artists of all time?
The train ride home was long, but it gave me time to reflect on my thoughts…. and for my ears to heal. I hope that all of you EDM'ers out there go see each of these artists. It is an experience like no other. It's time for the train to keep rolling, and my next stop. EXCISION! Oh no, I'm so sorry ear drums.