The Australian electronic music duo of Adam Hyde and Reuben Styles returned to the homeland fresh from a tour of over 20 dates across North America during January and February. This was my first experience of a live DJ set (beyond the perfunctory performances offered at your average night club) and I have to admit it is a must-see, must-experience. Before I tell you about the main attraction, there are two artists who deserve a mention or two (or three or four…)
Benson was assertive as hell. From behind the desk he told everyone to get up and dance and that this was the fourth show in the tour and definitely going to be the best by far. He spun a few tunes then handed over to The Meeting Tree smooth as can be. This brand new duo from One Day featuring Joyride and Raph Lauren was full of political proclamations and grungy beats. With equal parts self-mockery, partying without pants, and spinning catchy, unique tunes, they rallied the steadily growing crowd and handed back to Benson for the final half hour leading up to the headliners. In true Aussie style, Benson brought his special guests (parents) out on stage, instructed his dad to hit the green button and psyched up the audience with his mum and dad throwing dance moves in the audience’s direction.
By the time the stage went dark and video clips of Vegemite and other Australian icons introduced Adam and Reuben, who paid tribute to Bowie with intro music from Rebel Rebel and a rap overlay that bled into other tracks of nostalgia including Missy Elliott’s Work It and Get Ur Freak On, the Circle of Life and other Lion King motifs, theMacarena, to which everyone gleefully performed the choreography. Special Guest Dutch Duke came out and performed a few tracks with them, including Safia‘s Take Me Over.
They were not kidding about getting sweaty with Sydney. The general standing area did not stop dancing and jumping for the full hour and a half set. The boys also treated us to a debut of a new track, never before played live anywhere in the world or on the Australiana tour. They asked for honest opinions: “If you love it, dance; if you don’t love it, don’t dance.” It featured lighthearted vocals and playful beats with a warped drop before each chorus. Needless to say, everyone danced, albeit at this point everyone was a tiny bit exhausted.
Peking Duk made The Enmore their bitch on Monday night. Anything they said to do was done without hesitation. Shirts were removed, the entire general admission standing area squatted down in anticipation of the drop fromDaRude’s Sandstorm, girls were hoisted above shoulders for the final track of the night, High. The audience even chanted “Fuck Mike Baird!” even though it achieved very little besides letting off steam about the current lockout laws plaguing Sydney. These Aussie DJs know how to throw a party worth attending. With a stage full of LED screens showing custom animations, lasers and light shows galore, regular explosions of confetti or smoke, they captured the attention of a few thousand for a night of sweaty dancing and fun.
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