The successful return of LovEvolution on September 24th has shown that the San Fran’s thriving EDM community is very alive and well. With the day portion showcasing the bay area’s variety of dance clubs, the nighttime afterparty became the premier highlight of the celebration. Transforming the 20,000-capacity Oracle Sports Arena in Oakland, California into full-on rave, promoter Skills made their comeback strong. Even as the arena filled up, there was still plenty of room on the dancefloor and in the stands to get around from place to place. Additionally, the restrooms and food/beverage stands could not have been more easily accessible, with enough staff so there was never a line. With couches and areas to lounge in, I honestly don’t think I’ve ever attended a more convenient show of this size.
As for the talent, the artists came on strong, with every one offering their own flavor. Beginning with Blake Jarrell, the Chicago DJ dealt some of the biggest progressive house hits of the year, including Autosave by Fedde le Grand & Patric la Funk. Next up came Armada’s champion vocal trance act Dash Berlin, who proudly gave away shirts to adoring fans from the stage. Markus Schulz gave the arena a real shakedown with his dark Dakota sound and dealt massive big room tunes like Fantomah by Bart Claessen into his set. Changing it up with some grinding basslines came Moby, who dropped fist-pumping bangers like I Need by The Loops Of Fury. Lastly, Gareth Emery brought the auditorium deeply entrancing melodies and even ended his set with Promises by Skrillex & Nero.
It isn’t easy to come back from having your event cancelled, but Skills really pulled through this last weekend. Surprising us with an enormous venue and a spectacular stage setup, we can definitely say we’re looking forward to the surprises they’ll have in store next year.