Article by Sarah Harper
Usually when an eclectic mix of ravers cross paths, they find themselves wired with different brainwaves and thinking patterns, disagreeing and interested in opposite genres whether it be dubstep, progressive house or trance. But when the conversation between the two parties leads to Electric Zoo, surprisingly, the two-different minded personalities can usually come together in agreement: Electric Zoo is an electronic music festival, designed for whatever type of sub genere of dance music you’d like to delve into.
Taking place from 8/31-9/1 on Randall’s Island in New York City, Electric Zoo boasted a prestigious line-up of the top DJ and producers in the world, a sold-out crowd and unbelievable electronic music. For three-days straight, attendees dressed in absurd neon attire, drenched themselves in glitter and danced around in animalistic ways while world-renowned DJ/producers dropped their latest beats and high-tech LED visuals.
Each of the four stages that dominated the island were equipped with aggressive flashing lights that ‘moved’ with each DJs’ set, fog, and security guards shooting water at individual concert goers.
The main stage played host to popular artists including Tiesto, Skrillex, Above and Beyond and David Guetta. The Hill Top Arena created ‘trance therapy’ with acts from Ferry Corsten, Gabriel and Dresden and Above & Beyond, while the Sunday School Grove was an underground alternative from the big stages where Sasha and Boys Noize threw it down. The fourth tent greeted Friday with some of Fool’s Gold’s finest and Saturday was graced with a strong Dim Mak presence. But despite ones’ choice of location, each area curated the industries’ most prestigious work.
Pretty Lights closed the first night literally Filling Up the City Skies, Laidback Luke threw a wild party, as per usual, while Knife Party—who is so appropriately named—created quite possibly the best dubstep afternoon dance party I’ve yet to attend. Steve Aoki jumped on deck like a madman ready to rage, and Ferry Corsten brought his Friday night tent to what felt like a completely different festival with his continuous trance sound.
But probably the best part of the weekend derived from Axwell’s legendary Saturday evening performance. The electronic superstar opened with “Greyhound”, and then immediately dropped a mix of unpredictable beats, weaving in tribal manifests, splashes of disco, piano cords and fast tempo to songs from Florence and the Machine, Knife Party, Coldplay, Daftpunk and Afrojack. When his 90 minute set eventually came to a close, he proved one thing was for certain: despite Swedish House Mafias’ hiatus, the DJ can still manage to Save the World Tonight.
Though I could have done without the undeniably large crowd, Electric Zoo was still the best of times, filled with many new music introductions, new friends and a festival allowing attendees’ inhibitions to seriously be set free.