Is trance over in California? Never. etd.LOVE was among the most anticipated events of the year thus far, with online tickets selling out weeks in advance. Thousands gathered at The Regency, a multi-floor stone-carved dance hall that gave the impression that Hogwarts was hosting the show. While there’s no shortage of dance festivals in San Franicsco, SKILLS’ etd.LOVE was definitely unique from the rest.
In a city dominated by the dubstep/glitch hop scene, the lineup was certain to offer a rare trance spectacle. Myon & Shane 54, Gabriel & Dresden, and John O’ Callaghan were the main attractions, and boy did they kill it that night. Backed by beaming lights, and countered by a highly energetic crowd that knew all the lyrics, it was a no doubt a special night in SF. Mashup kings Myon & Shane 54 stayed true to the crowd’s wishes, delivering a bevy of nonstop trance classics mixed and spliced masterfully between each other.
Gabriel & Dresden were also a force to be reckoned with. Playing a highly diverse mix of dubstep, trance, techno, and progressive house, the reunited duo has quickly proven themselves over the past year to be among the most innovative DJ duos around. However, with the crowd’s energy built up over the hours, the perfect closer had to be John O’ Callaghan. When JOC took over, he cranked up the BPM to 140, and the crowd responded with glee. Anyone who’s seen a JOC set knows that the Irishman knows how to bring it hard. Dropping classics like In & Out of Love vs Lost Connection and his own masterpiece Big Sky, it was a night full of nostalgia. The trance of yesterday, today, and the future were all represented at etd.LOVE, and it was glorious.
Trance artists weren’t the only ones being represented that night. One of my favorite electro producers, Lazy Rich, threw down a terrific set in the first floor, combining hard electro and dubstep with complete mastery. Slovenian talent Beltek deserves a mention for a great performance as well, mixing electro and progressive house tracks together seamlessly.
Credit is due to SKILLS for solid organizing, offering plenty of room for people to relax, and a diverse selection of refreshments at reasonable prices. The trance and house stages were a bit lacking in volume (a frequent problem at trance events), but this will hopefully be amended at the next venue. If you missed out on etd.LOVE, make sure not to miss the sure-to-be-epic POP2012 in seven weeks.