What we would have done to be able to witness Above & Beyond’s Acoustic USA performance at Greek Theater this past weekend. Such is life, especially when you’re off living on the East Coast. But from what we can tell by the cell phone videos we were sent during their show, this was indeed a monumental experience that no DJ set could ever offer. Even so, these poor-quality iPhone clips were so powerful that they brought tears to our eyes as we had instantly become part of “Sun & Moon,” a timeless masterpiece. Before last weekend, nothing felt so right or so pure.
As the visuals cast a dark shadow around Tony and Paavo, their iconic trance style began to emanate from the speakers and through the multi-leveled crowd. The catalyst track, Vic Sky's "Time For Love," was first to break the silence. And surely, the love was present.
Eager to embark on their night's anticipated musical journey, fans of the UK group, or band as they often like to refer themselves, began to dance as the atmosphere livened up to heights unseen thus far in the night. As the duo began to transition out of the intro, songs like Amoda' s "Fuzztone" and Paul & Luke's "Fable 2008" began to drive the tempo and pave the way for more upbeat tracks like "Audien" by Wayfarer and "Easy" by Mat Zo and Porter Robinson, both of which were released on Anjunabeats.
The end of a music festival is always depressing. We often tend to make it sadder than it really is or needs to be, maybe because we’re slightly dramatic, or maybe just because we’re simply in love with the music and the festival environment. Whatever the case may be, most of us go through a withdrawal period spanning from a few days to a few weeks. It makes sense though, because the hype continues to prolong with each year. If you haven’t noticed, Ultra Music Festival tickets went on sale in May this year as opposed to in October. We'll admit it— many of us are spoiled, and many of us demand the best of the best. With productions that promise to outdo themselves each consecutive year, we can’t help but to get overly excited for a major festival a year in advance. But those three (in this case, two) days pass by so quickly that when it finally ends, we think to ourselves, “F*ck. It’s already over?” The buildup is intense, but the comedown back to reality hits you harder than you’d think. Particularly with the abrupt ending to Electric Zoo.
Yes, you read that correctly- a couple got engaged this past weekend at Electric Zoo and two of their wildest dreams became a reality. For Chris, it was important that he made the ultimate proposal to his girlfriend of a little over three years, Ashley. And what better way to do so than with the help of Above & Beyond? If you were at the Zoo last week and saw A&B's set, you may remember that during "A Thing Called Love," the LED wall behind them read: "Chris, @TheDJBF WOULD LOVE TO MARRY Ashley, @DJGFProblems." Well, she said "yes," albeit a teary "yes." We found Chris on Twitter thanks to one of our contributors, Jessica Ekman, and decided to ask the couple a few questions to lighten the mood surrounding Electric Zoo. As they say below, "The music we so dearly love is not about drugs and death. It’s about magic, dance, love and bringing people together." Read on to learn their story, and gain a different perspective on Ezoo and electronic dance music in general that oftentimes, we fail to remember.
Friday, August 16th
It’s been a while since Above & Beyond has been in DC, and ever since Echostage opened a little over a year ago, we’ve been dying to see them perform. One of the top trance acts in the last decade, A&B are bringing Group Therapy to the district for their Echostage debut. Best known for their tracks, “Sun and Moon” and “A Thing Called Love,” this show is sure to bring tears to many. Unfortunately tickets are sold out, but you might be able to find some on Craigslist! Doors 9 pm. No dress code. 18+
Ministry of Sound recently released the highly anticipated Trance Nation album, mixed by the father of trance himself, Lange. Between this and the release of his third artist album at the end of this year, the DJ and producer is staying very busy. Lange took some time to fill us in on the mixing of Trance Nation and the exciting year ahead.
What was your reaction when first presented with the opportunity to mix Trance Nation for Ministry of Sound?
If you don't see the powerful trio, Above & Beyond as pure British Trance gods than you might be missing out on what it is to actually experience and hear good music. There are truly amazing trance producers out there, but A&B just generates a special connection to their audience. Their new video for "Alchemy" featuring Zoë Johnston shows just that.
The video tells an emotional tale of a relationship that diminishes when a woman finds her lover with someone else. The track stands right to Jono Grant, Paavo Siljamäki, and Tony McGuinness' true style. It's deeply filled with melodic chords behind the pleasant vocals of Zoë Johnston can capture your soul right from the beginning.
McGuinness told Rolling Stone that the track is "an honest, raw expression of betrayal." I think that's something we can all relate to. Watch the video below and see for yourself.
Ultra Music has just launched its newest video series titled "Above & Beyond the clouds...a personal journey through the white island." The footage takes dance music aficionados through the famed island of Ibiza during the hottest summer club season in the world.
The first in the series features Above & Beyond who look back on their cherished memories and remember how the island has influenced their sound and what makes it such a special place to celebrate a love of dance music. Opening with saying "Our roots are really... very much on this island. There's so much history we've been coming here for so many years now," it's clear that Ibiza serves as a heavenly place for just about everyone.
For many New Yorkers, the feeling of attempting to navigate through Pacha's jam-packed dance floor is, uncomfortably, a familiar one. In a city that boasts some of the most impressive lineups weekend after weekend, sacrifices must sometimes be made to take full advantage of all that New York clubs have to offer. So last weekend, we decided to venture out of the confines of Manhattan and explore some new territory.
When word first spread that Above & Beyond was to play at Mixx, one of the two clubs in Atlantic City's highly-esteemed Borgata hotel, a road trip down the turnpike seemed like the only logical plan of action. While most usually associate our neighboring state with MTV's favorite fist-pumping clubbers, AC has always stood out in a distinct way of its own. And lately, after the launch of a massive new advertising campaign, it is clear that the identity of the city has shifted from that of a shady gambling mecca to more of an epic destination. Visitors are urged to "do AC," a vacation spot that is all-encompassing, and one that offers less of a predetermined culture and more of a clean slate. It is here that experiences are created, and whether spending a weekend at the heartbreak hotel or hitting the jackpot for the first time, AC can mean anything to anyone at any time.