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EDC 2013 London Review - Ft Alesso, Tiesto, Steve Angello and Avicii - Part 2

by Martin Higgins. Published Sat 03 Aug 2013 12:27, last updated: 08/08/13

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Electric Daisy Carnival is used to heatwaves in its usual destination on Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

This desert setting brings gatherers from far afield to hear dance music that shakes the ancient Nevada rock to its core.

And like on Venice beach, FL, many watchers break into spontaneous applause as the sun disappears from the sky every evening.

How fitting then for the inaugural event in the UK, never before seen on these Shores, the sun turned out and drenched London’s Olympic Park in sunshine and turned the Stratford site into a scorching paradise.

But the applause didn’t end at sunset here, and it will last longer in the memory, because EDC 2013 was colossal.

Alesso was on the bill, a man who has been perfecting a dynamic new sound in the studio of late, a nuanced take on early progressive house, which has been punctuated with a series of collaborations with the likes of Avicii, Swedish House Mafia and Tiësto.

World recognition has followed, and on the EDC mainstage, it is obvious why.

His sound is complex, full of jarring beats, and with the hail of lights and lasers blaring out into the distance, jets of steam erupting like geysers in front of the decks, it made for a truly spectacular stage show.

Behind the mesmerising DJ, who was playing up to the crowd and asking for more energy, were these jagged arrow heads expanding and retracting in time with the music.

Then he burst into a remix of Adele’s Set Fire To The Rain, which sparked a chain reaction and had everyone singing along at full volume.

As one of the most played songs on radio of late there was no need to Google lyrics and the crowd regaled back the words from memory.

Steve Angello brought the devil’s music to the Olympic Park, hellfire and brimstone, as the sun began to set.

Emptying huge fire cannons in synchronised bursts at the front of his set up, the heat could be felt at least 50 deep into the crowd from where we were standing. A pyromaniac’s wet dream.

We have always known Steve Angello is the real McCoy, and there is nothing else that needs to be added to that, but one highlight was the mashup of Florence and The Machine, which coincided with a huge explosion of streamers above the crowd which clung to the support cables in the wind.

Then it was all a beautiful blur, through a succession of party anthems, coupled with some hugely elaborate party poppers bursting forth from the stage, as well as the obligatory confetti guns.

Then came the sing-along track of the night, the international smash hit Don’t You Worry Child, the party anthem that has been filling dance floors up and down the country, which culminated in a huge choir like chorus.

Angello cut the power and let the speakers go silent, and the thronging mass responded, singing together accapella.

Avicii had some rather strange synergy going on between the light show and a bizarre looking mechanical spider, as he played into The Clash’s hit London Calling, which considering the setting could not have been more fitting. A web seem to fall over the crowd.

After peppering his set with bootlegs of Macklemore & Ryan Lewis, Avicii hit into the hottest track this year, Wake Me Up, which is sitting pretty on top of the official UK charts right now.

However, when he played into old favourite Levels, that made the biggest noise of the night and needless to say, the crowd went ballistic.

As night fell, the fireworks started to explode in the sky and gathered above the stage like a halo.

Tiesto meanwhile was smashing his electro-infused hits like Maximal Crazy and Adagio For Strings up.

Behind him on the LCD screens there were broken diamonds, multi-coloured shards of glass, which was punctuated by a visual spectacular which beggars belief, the firework waterfall.

A sight that has to be added to the bucket list if you have not seen one already.

And before you knew it the festivities had reached their crescendo and the electrified atmosphere of a few moments before was quashed – people started to come out of their trance like state that the music had created.

Now it was time to trudge home through the Olympic Park, ears still ringing, but full of anticipation for next year’s return. On this performance, it is quite simply unmissable.

Words by Martin Higgins mhfreelance.co.uk


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