Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Bamboozle Concert Review - Part 2

So now that you've read Part 1 where I detailed the opening acts at Bamboozle, it's time to focus on the main events. The first act I deemed to be a "main event" was @macmiller. Let me preface my review of his set by letting you know that I already saw him open for Wiz Khalifa about a year ago, so the novelty or new car shine of his act had worn off. Still, Mac held it down and kept the energy high for every minute of his 45 minute set. After seeing him twice live, there's no doubt my favorite track of his has become Best Day Ever. There's a nostalgic quality to the track from the video of him rapping as a kid to the simply addictive's just a great track. Coming in a close second was his crowd inspiring performance of Frick Park Market. All in all, a solid set from the resident Rostrum Records white boy extraordinaire.
Next up was @incubusband after a quick stop at the Taco Truck. I'm not even remotely a big Incubus fan, but a few of their songs have found there way into my iTunes library at some point. So, I figured, might as well check them out while I'm here and there's no one else on any other stages I want to see at the moment. Good news was, their set ended up being the calm 45 minutes I needed before the craziness ensued. Hell, they even awarded my attendance by playing my favorite song Are You In?. Much appreciated Incubus, I have a healthy respect for your adult contemporary concert music now that I've seen you live.

We left the Incubus set at 8:40 PM and the next hour was an absolute blur. Not only did we have to make the long walk all the way across the Bamboozle grounds to catch two bands we were excited to see (@Timeflies and @VOLBEAT), but we also needed to be back to the main stage by 9:30 PM. Herein lies the downside of music festivals, sometimes timing doesn't work in your favor when two bands you want to see are playing at around the same time. I mentioned yesterday that Timeflies was late to get on stage and as a result, we only got to see two or three of their songs. Same thing for Volbeat, we stayed for about 20 minutes and then booked it across the beach in the direction of loud electronic music.

The source of that loud electronic music was none other than @Skrillex. If you've been following my blog the past six months, you know darn well how enamored I am with his music. Even better, loud electronic music translates well to wide open venues like Bamboozle, making it a perfect concoction of awesomeness. Fighting through the amped up crowd in pitch darkness on the beach was an unenviable obstacle, but we managed to find high ground and an above average view of the stage. Put it this way, when you're short, motivated and have been to more than a few concerts, you develop a knack for finding ways to see...#HobbitTricks
The first song playing when we walked up was one of my favorites, a remix of @Avicii's Levels...
Avicii - Good Feelin' (Skrillex Remix)

The next time I arrive fashionably late to a set, I can only hope it'll be half as awesome as what I witnessed with Skrillex. Like any other electronic/dubstep there are literally no breaks in the action, only lulls in between high energy synthesizers. One after another, he kept mixing in his own remixes with other well know dubstep/EDM tracks that everyone in attendance was familiar with. For example, I'll always be partial to his remix of @nerouk's Promises because it was the first song that I ever heard from Skrillex...
Nero - Promises (Skrillex Remix)

As his set continued, I kept thinking to myself, he's got a whole hour and a half on stage, but only a few EPs to rely on. I wonder how he's going to fill the time? The answer is became really simple as he seamlessly weaved his way through organic hits like Bangarang and Summit, while sprinkling in a few well known hits that aren't his like @knifepartyinc's Internet Friends.

What I've come to appreciate about seeing EDM artists like Skrillex in concert is that you never feel cheated when it's over. If anything you feel completely drained because of the constant high energy stimuli in your face. Maybe you get used to the unabashed electronics after attending a few concerts, but I've never felt like "man I wished they just would have played a couple more songs" at an EDM show. Yea part of it is because I'm on the shady side of 20, but intense, loud music can only be interesting for so long. It just so happens, Skrillex kept my interest piqued for his entire set as he rounded third heading for the finish line when he went In for the Kill...
La Roux - In For the Kill (Skrillex Remix)

So what are the five key takeaways of my first festival experience?
1) Get there at least 45 mins early if you want to see the first act because a lot of people have to go through security to get through
2) Don't automatically go for their festival sponsored parking options. It would have cost me and my girlfriend $10 each to park 7 miles away and have to wait for a bus. Instead we parked 4 blocks away for free and walked. #Clutch
3) Take advantage if the festival permits you to bring in one unopened water bottle
4) Time management, time management, TIME MANAGEMENT! It's a good problem to have when so many great artists are at the same festival, but they don't always stay on schedule and sometimes you have to cut your losses and move on to the next set
5) Any beach concert is going to be chilly at night, prepare for being near the ocean. In what can only be described as a rookie mistake, my girlfriend and I had to buy $5 long sleeve t's to make up for our lack of night weather consideration. Just because it's 80+ degrees during the day, doesn't mean that ocean breeze isn't going make you pay later at night
Feel free to peruse my modest album of pictures I took at Bamboozle and don't hesitate if you're offered the opportunity to see Skrillex in concert. It was well worth the full price of admission...#RulerOfEDM


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