Setting New York City’s wildest party animals loose for three days, Made Event turned Randall’s Island into an open cage for Electric Zoo 2011 over Labor Day weekend. Battling it out on four massive stages equipped with raging strobe lights and gigantic LCD screens, the world’s hottest artists and DJs put on some of their most aggressive performances.
Headlining on Saturday, David Guetta reconnected with the EDM community, knowing that his pop hits have not sat well with some of the Big Apple’s most discerning club goers. Accomplishing this feat with a down-right dirty electro house set, the French superstar DJ even got on the mic to tell the appreciating audience about the all-instrumental second disc of his new double album Nothing But The Beat. Backstage, David took quite a liking to the bass-heavy beast from LA, Skrillex, who fired off barrage after barrage of wobble fury in the Hilltop Arena tent while Guetta watched attentively.
Summoning the greatest names in trance, the festival had nearly every DJ you could ask for, including Sunday’s mainstage closer Armin van Buuren. From lining up young prodigies like Mat Zo and Arty to living legends BT and Gabriel & Dresden, pulsing trance rhythms were everywhere to be found. With fist-pumping in heavy demand, heavy hitters Ferry Corsten and Markus Schulz set dancefloors on fire with their hardest kicks and techiest basslines. Continuing, Above & Beyond’s Paavo Siljamäki also had a special surprise for their set–he brought his daughter on stage to drop their 2011 hit Sun & Moon (see YouTube video below).
For those who appreciate more traditional EDM forms of minimal and techno, Electric Zoo was the place to be, with Dubfire, Richie Hawtin, and Carl Cox & Friends tearing up the Sunday School tent. Although Richie’s one-of-a-kind Plastikman 1.5 stage setup could not be used due to a debacle with a forklift and lasting repercussions from Hurricane Irene, there was more than enough heavy minimal and relentless techno to pound even the most sturdy fans into submission.
In a remarkably short time, Made Event have really made a name for themselves and shown us what they’re made of. Certainly delivering some of the year’s most competitive DJ sets, the city that never sleeps lived up to its name and showed the world it can bring it just as hard as the other three-day North American music festivals.