Tag Archives: Electric Factory

Bassnectar Electrifies Fans During Back to Back Sold Out Shows at The Factory

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If Bassnectar drops bass in your face then Philadelphia must be two faced. That’s because the god-father of bass music opened the month of May with not one, but two sold out shows on back to back nights at the Electric Factory.

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To his intensely loyal fan-base, Bassnectar is more than just a performer, he is a way of life. Much like Dead-Heads went on tour across the country following the Grateful Dead, Bass-Heads trek far and wide to get as much of Lorin Ashton as their minds, bodies, and wallets will allow.

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The Bassnectar family is a community of people that look out for one another and those in need, evidenced by the two night clothing drive that took place outside of the Electric Factory. Fans were encouraged to donate items which were then provided to the less fortunate members of Philadelphia.

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As further proof of Ashton’s respect for his fans and their well being, all concert-goers were permitted to bring a sealed bottle of water into the show to aid in their hydration. Once inside, water was also for sale but numerous free-bottles were also given away through-out the night by the Bass Ambassadors working at the show.

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Once you factor in that his DJ and production skills are out of this world, his lighting and visuals are are a show in and of themselves, and that he routinely plays for well over two hours per event, it’s easy to see why he was one of the top three ticket selling DJs in 2012 (along with Tiesto and Deadmau5) topping out near a quarter million tickets sold.

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Having seen Bassnectar numerous times, interviewing him at Ultra Music Festival 2012, and being admittedly big fans of his large music catalog, we were excited for the double dip of bass to kick off the month in style.

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The first show, on Wednesday May 1st was sold out weeks before the doors opened to fans at 7pm.

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The opening set of the night was given to Thiftworks. The California based DJ with ties to our area did a nice job of setting the stage the for the rest of the evening. It would be unfair to say that he warmed the crowd up as the audience members were already hot with anticipation before they even set foot inside the venue.

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Up next was Detroit”s Griz who seems to be everywhere these days. We had to chance to catch him at SnowBall Music Festival back in March and were anxious to see him again on our home turf. With the venue already packed, Griz took over around 9pm and showed why he is a heavy-hitter in his own right.

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His soulful, funk-infused bass sounds had the Electric Factory charged up and going hard. He’ll be making the rounds across the U.S. this summer and we highly suggest checking out his set if you have the chance.

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Just after 10pm, with numerous Bassnectar logos already emblazoned on the gigantic digital wall behind the turntables, Bassnectar hit the stage with the image of a huge fluffy puppy on the screen behind him.

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Playing his signature mixture of hip-hop, rock, and just about everything-else infused bass music, Bassnectar took Philadelphia on a journey into the far reaches of euphoria and sanity.

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To say that the Bass-Heads lost their minds for the next two and a half hours would be putting it lightly, very lightly.

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With the Electric Factory so packed that it was nearly impossible to move throughout the balcony, let alone the main floor below, the night became one big, hot, sweaty, head-banging affair.

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Night two, on Thursday, May 2nd, had many similarities to night one but several differences as well. Griz was replaced by Michal Menert, who rocked the mic as well as the decks.

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Night two also had a “Red, White, and Blue” theme and fans came out adorned in patriotic gear and sporting patriotic Bassnectar totems.

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Because Bassnectar has such a strong following, he wouldn’t disrespect his fans by playing the same set two nights in a row. Yes, there are some elements that carry over from one night to another, especially his signature hits, but everything from the track selection to the visuals were unique to each show.

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Once again on night two he played for more than two hours, in which the audience, energized by every single bass drop, returned the vibe ten fold. Even those few people we spoke with who had been dragged to the show by their friends, admitted that by the end of the evening that they were full Bassnectar converts.

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There is just something about the man, his fans, and the way everything comes together at his shows (especially the smaller venue performances as opposed to larger festival ones) to form a magical experience that will make a fan and a believer out of almost anyone.

Don’t take our word for it. When he comes to your town, grab your friends, grab a ticket, and go experience Bassnectar for yourself.

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[photo credit: Steve Garfinkel Photography & D. Jacob Miller Photography]

You can view a ton of additional photos from both nights below (click thumbnails to enlarge):

 

 

 

 

 

Big Gigantic Draws Huge Crowd to Electric Factory

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Even with the multitude of sub-genres popping up in the world of EDM, it’s impossible to pigeon hole Colorado duo “Big Gigantic” into any of them.

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With Dominic Lalli on production and saxophone, and Jeremy Salken on drums, they have carved out a niche all their own.

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Their live production over a multitude of popular beats would be enough to draw a big crowd. Add in their stunning visual stage mapping, and those crowds become gigantic.

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That was the case on Friday, February 22nd as they sold-out the Electric Factory in Philadelphia.

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Fans flooded into the Factory from the moment the doors opened at 8pm, snagging prime viewing spots for the rest of the evening. When opening act “Space Jesus” hit the stage at 9pm, you could already feel the electricity in the air. The prodigal son of EDM dropped a psychedelic and hip-hop infused 30 minute set that quite literally set the stage for a fantastic night of music, to the delight of everyone already in attendance.

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Up next was “Kill Paris”, and the purveyor of future funk took a night off from French homicide, choosing instead to absolutely kill it right here in Philly. His set was upbeat, and downright dirty all at once. Corey Baker might want to consider a name change because Killadelphia would be quite fitting after his performance last night.

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With energy levels already running high, and the Electric Factory packed to the gills, Big Gigantic hit the stage around 1130pm and things got grimy. Hanging on every cymbal crash and wail of the sax, the crowd threw their hands up and got down for the next 90 minutes.

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The visuals were amazing; the mapping changed between everything from psychedelic patterns to giant slot machines. The energy on stage and in the crowd below was fitting for a venue named after generating electricity. It was a powerful performance and experience for fans from the front of the crowd to the back of the balcony.

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If you missed it, sax to be you.

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© All photos/articles are property of Independent Philly. Editing, altering, copying, or distributing photos or articles is not permitted without the consent of Independent Philly. All images used must include our original watermarks to avoid copyright infringement.

You can view an expanded photo gallery below (click thumbnails to enlarge):

Imagine Dragons: Rock Reality at the Electric Factory

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Monday night, February 18th, 8pm, and it’s already hot and sweaty in one of Philadelphia’s classic concert venues, The Electric Factory, where a sold out crowd is awaiting one of the hottest bands currently in the world of rock, Imagine Dragons.

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The first of two opening acts was Indie band Nico Vega (from Los Angeles) fronted by Aja Volkman, the wife and number one cheerleader of Imagine Dragons front-man Dan Reynolds.

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Her voice is loud, commanding, unique, and romancing. Drummer Dan Epand, guitarist Rich Koehler, and bassist Jamila Weaver collectively provide a powerful sound to compliment Aja’s vocals.

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At first, the always tough Philly crowd looks upon the performers with blank expressions as if thinking “Who is Nico Vega”? In no time however, Aja and crew have the crowd waving their hands and nodding their heads, priming them for the acts to follow.

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The second act of the evening, Atlas Genuis, is a group of Aussie gents who walk onstage and immediately win the crowd over with tight harmonies, cool bass lines, peppy percussion, and stunning smooth and melodic vocals.

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Singer/guitarist Keith Jeffery, brothers Michael on drums and Stephen on bass, and Darren Sell on the keyboards are the epitome of performers, connecting with the crowd at every juncture and getting into the thick of things. Stephen can’t help himself, getting up close to mingle with the Philly natives, hopping off stage to get the extra love that Atlas Genius so deserves, and then taking the time to make a paper plane set-list which is sent to soar into the chaos. By the end of their set the crowd is in love.

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Finally, the headliners are announced and the crowd goes berserk. Dan Reynolds, Ben McKee, Wayne Sermon, and Dan Platzman take the stage to roaring applause! Imagine Dragons opens with percussion so thumpy, thick, and bass-tastic, that hearts skip a beat.

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This leads directly into their opening song “Round and Round”, quickly followed by the 80s synth awesomeness of “Tip Toe”, sending concert goers into an arm swaying, head bobbing frenzy.

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Reynolds addresses the crowd several times over the course of the evening, elaborating on how much he loves Philly: “This place is like magic to me”. Top notch harmonies by three of the four band mates initiates a perfect Philly/Dragons sing along. The entire night is a collaborative affair between the fans and the band.

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The breathy assistance of the crowd rouses the sleeping giant of percussion, turning “Radioactive” into the evening’s anthem. The boys then bring the mood back down to earth with a sincere performance of “Thirty Lives”.

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Reynolds leaves the stage for a moment to “cool off”, allowing the other band members to show off their musical chops and woo the crowd with technical perfection and instrumental acrobatics. As Reynolds returns to the stage, the band jumps into “On Top of the World” as the crowd blissfully dances and sings along.

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The evening wraps up with fans waiting for it, waiting for it, waiting for it…”It’s Time”. The band’s well known track is the crescendo to a perfect evening celebrating the friendship between Philadelphia and Imagine Dragons.

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But what’s a performance without an encore? The band returns shortly after leaving the stage and provides the audience with a final song for the road, “Nothing Left to Say”.

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[photos by Steve Garfinkel Photography, article by Amanda Buck]

SET-LIST:

Round and Round

Amsterdam

Tiptoe

Hear Me

Cha-Ching (Till We Grow Older)

Rocks

Radioactive

Thirty Lives

Bleeding Out

Demons

Underdog

On Top of the World

It’s Time

Encore:

Nothing Left to Say

Interview with G. Love

G. Love Fixin to Die

It’s hard not to gush about one of our favorite musicians. G. Love has been representing Philadelphia for two decades with his infectious sound. Impossible to pigeon hole into even many sub-genres of music, we can simply say that his blues and hip-hop infused tunes are as unique as they are catchy.

The man has produced numerous hits and albums, worked with some of the biggest names in the music industry, and traveled the world, playing for fans around the globe.

This Friday he will return to his hometown to play at sold-out show at the Theater of the Living Arts and he took some time out of his busy schedule to talk to us about making music, summer living, time travel, and all things Philly.

Independent Philly: What projects are you currently working on, either as a solo artist or with Special Sauce?

G. Love: Right now we are kind of working on, as a band, a new record, the writing of it. I should say I’ve been writing a lot this past year and we’re gearing up to record the new record in the spring time. A lot of our focus right now is on making sure that the new tunes are really great. So yeah, we’re just getting all the arrangements really tight and everything really hooked up and ready to go.

IP: Your show in Philly this Friday is sold out yet again. Do the hometown shows still have a special feeling for you?

GL: I live up in Boston these days so I honestly don’t get to Philly too much unless I’m playing or going to the studio so it’s really awesome to hear that the show is sold out. We’re playing the TLA (Theater of the Living Arts) which is kind of a return to my old stomping grounds since I grew up right here in the neighborhood. I used to play on the street right across from the TLA and a lot of my songs are written about things that happened right there, right around the corner from the TLA. You know, about the basketball courts at Segar Park and Starr Garden, you know, just livin’ right there in the city. When I play internationally they kind of understand what I’m doing musically, but it’s kind of written for Americans, you know, it’s very American. Then I feel like when I’m traveling in America everyone kind of understands what I’m talking about but when I play in Philly, everyone knows exactly what I’m talking about. Know what I mean?

IP: I do. I grew up in Philly myself which leads to my next question… What’s your connection to 6525 Parkline Drive?

GL: Oh that verse was by one of my old rapping partners, The Katman, that’s where he grew up, that was just the address of his parent’s house in Mt. Airy.

IP: From album names, to lyrics, to video images, to tattoos, you seem to have a fascination with Lemonade, what can you tell us about it?

GL: I don’t know, it’s just one of those things where, lyrically, I always liked the word “lemonade” and what it represented. I would always pitch “lemonade” as a track or song and I said if I ever got a record deal I would get “lemonade” tattooed on my arm, which I did, up at South Street Tattoo at 11th & South. To me it always just kind of represented the front porch and those lazy summer days and that was kind of what my music always, I used to write a lot of my music actually sitting on the front porch in the summertime. That’s what I like to do is sit out with my guitar, in the shade or in the sunshine, but I like to sit outside. That’s a good day for me if I can sit outside and strum away on my guitar all afternoon. So the “lemonade” thing just kind of symbolized the blues and those front porch days in the summertime, and just kind of a different way of looking at life, and it was all kind of just summarized in that drink (laughs). 

IP: We’d love to get your personal views on Philly… Who do you think currently makes the best Cheesesteak in Philadelphia?

GL: Tony Lukes is bangin’. I grew up eating Jim’s Steaks. There’s also a great place down off of Delaware Ave, it’s called John’s Roast Pork, it’s a little mom-and-pop spot. I think as far of the bigger places that really do well, Tony Lukes is pretty amazing.

IP: Which Philly sports team do you think is the closest to winning a championship?

GL: Now? How are the Flyers going to be? I don’t know man, maybe the Sixers. I mean I know they won’t win it this year but they’ll probably make the playoffs. Eagles… looks like we’re going to be rebuilding for a few years now, and I don’t really follow baseball. Although the Phillies have been doing pretty good lately, aside from last year. I guess we’re really just kind of up shit’s creek with the Philadelphia sports scene. It’s a tough sports town because it’s such a huge sports town with such die-hard fans, and you just grow up your whole life bleeding green and watching the Sixers. I’m more of an Eagles fan and Sixers fan really but of course I root for the Flyers and Phillies…and the Fever… do you remember them? That was our soccer team. We have mad love for our sports teams, especially the Eagles and it’s very tough to be a fan.

IP: What do you think is the best concert venue to play in Philly?

GL: I’ve played everywhere from the Tin Angel to Citizen’s Bank Park. Honestly the TLA really is one of the great classic rooms in Philly, I’m happy to be going back there. In the summer we’ve been playing a lot of outdoor shows at Festival Pier and played outside in the parking lot at Electric Factory so those are cool. Electric Factory, of course that’s a classic room but it can also been sonically challenging. Actually I would say that my favorite rooms in Philly are some of the medium sized rooms like the TLA, or some of the smaller clubs I came up playing, whether it was Dobbs or the Khyber Pass, or the Tin Angel like I said. The thing about Philadelphia which is so great is that there are a lot of venues, a lot of small or medium sized venues and that’s why it’s got a pretty vibrant music scene because there are places for people to play like Johnny Brendas. Not just because I’m playing it, but I’ll say the TLA.

IP: Who is the best unknown or under-known Philly performer or singer that deserve more attention?

GL: The person that always jumps to mind, and I’ve been such a long-term fan of his, and cohort of his, and he’s just a legend in the Philly music scene, I’m talking about Chuck Treece. He’s played with everybody and I kind of came up, when I was kid just really looking up to him and as I got better and more well known I got to play with him and he was in my band for a little while. He’s kind a a cornerstone to the hip-hop side of the music and also the punk rock scene. Chuck Treece.

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IP: If we have our calculations correct you turned 40 a few months ago…

GL: Yeah it’s true.

IP: If you could go back in time 20 years and see yourself, what advice would you pass along?

GL: If I could go back 20 years? That’s a good question. Wow, 20 years ago, what would I say? My girlfriend says “don’t spend all my money”. On the financial side I’d say “buy a house in Fishtown” cause we rented a house in Fishtown for like seven years, I could have made a ton of loot if I’d bought something down there. The other thing would have been, on a musical level, cause 20 years ago we were getting ready to make our first record, I would have said “You know what, work that first record for one more year, and take more time making your second record”. (laughs)

IP: You’ve worked with a slew of other musicians, a few that come to mind are Slightly Stoopid, Jack Johnson, and the Avett Brothers. Who is another artist that you’d love to work with that you haven’t before?

GL: It’s funny because I really have gotten the chance to work with a lot of musicians and that’s really one of the best parts of my gig, is getting to collaborate with so many kinds of people, whether it’s people I grew up listening to or people that have grown up listening to me. I don’t know man, I’ve worked with so many people. I’d love the chance to get to do some recording with Jack White, I think that’d be pretty awesome. We’ve talked about it a couple times. I think maybe someday we’ll get to do some work in the studio. That would be someone I’d like to do something with.

IP: What’s the secret ingredient that makes the sauce so special?

GL: Lotta love.

IP: Tell us something that would surprise or even shock our readers…

GL: If the Eagles were to win the Super Bowl.

We can’t wait to catch G. Love & Special Sauce when they roll into the TLA on Friday. We hope to see you there Philly!

Passion Pit, No Longer a Little Secret, Sells Out Electric Factory

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Sometimes, when you’ve attended hundreds (if not thousands) of concerts, some of them can run together into a big blur. Then there are those concert moments that are so special, that they are burned into your memory for the rest of your life. You not only remember the music, but the weather, the air temperature, the smells, the crowd…the entire experience.

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That was the case the first time we caught one of our favorite bands, Passion Pit, live in concert. Their sunset performance on the first night of Coachella 2010 will forever go down as one the most magical concert moments we can remember.

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Since that time, we’ve seen them play several shows in Philly including the Mann Center, the Liacouras Center, and at Made in America festival. While no Passion Pit show will never be quite as magical as our first one (you never forget your first), we could see them perform over and over again, week in and week out, and it just wouldn’t get old.

That’s why we were thrilled when they rolled into Philly on Thursday night, November 29th to play a show at the Electric Factory (originally scheduled for the Liacouras Center) with support from opening act Ra Ra Riot.

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Often times venues fill in slowly leading up to the headliners, but Ra Ra Riot had the Electric Factory nearly filled by the time they hit the stage around 830pm.

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Lead singer Wes Miles and the re re rest of Ra Ra Riot opened the show with “Too Too Too Fast” which was a little ironic because their set seemed to go by entirely too quickly. After 11 songs, they left the stage (ending with “I Shut Off” and “Boy”) but don’t fret Philly, Ra Ra Riot will be back in the not so distant future to headline their own show at Union Transfer.

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We thoroughly enjoyed seeing Ra Ra Riot (bonus points to any bands that incorporate the violin) and look forward to their next visit to our city.

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After a short break for the stage change over, Passion Pit emerged to a roar of cheers from the legions of fans that packed the Factory. Opening with “Take a Walk”, the first single released from their 2012 album “Gossamer”, they had fans singing along and dancing from the first note of the night until the last.

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Lead singer Michael Angelakos has a simply amazing falsetto voice that is undeniably infectious. Add to that the insanely catchy electro-pop tunes that Passion Pit produces and you have the perfect storm of tunes to shake your ass to. Don’t try to resist, it’s futile.

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Their 13 song set included some of our favorites like “The Reeling”, “Let Your Love Grow Tall”, and “I’ll Be Alright”, before ending with perhaps their most well known tune “Sleepyhead”. We would have loved to have heard “Better Things”, but it was not to be.

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After leaving the stage the band quickly returned for a fantastic two-song encore of “Moth’s Wings” and “Little Secrets”. As confetti streamers poured from the ceiling and lasers shot across the venue, the band’s energy on stage was easily matched by that of the crowd.

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Once a little New England secret, the cat has long since leaped out of the bag with Passion Pit and we look forward to their continued success that is sure to bring them back to town before too long.

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You can view a full set list and expanded photo gallery below (click thumbnails to enlarge photos):

SET LIST:

Take a Walk

The Reeling

To Kingdom Come

It’s Not My Fault, I’m Happy

Carried Away

Let Your Love Grow Tall

Eyes as Candles

Constant Conversations

Mirrored Sea

Live to Tell the Tale

Folds in Your Hands

Love Is Greed

I’ll Be Alright

Sleepyhead

Encore:

Moth’s Wings

Little Secrets

Heineken Red Star Access Tour Gets Electric Factory Hip-Hopping

The Heineken Red Star Access tour decked out the Electric Factory on Saturday, October 13th with full blown experience to wow the five senses.

The private event took place from 4-8pm and those lucky enough to be in attendance were treated to free Heineken and a variety of tasty food items. There were also interactive game and mixing stations, branded Heineken clothing items (from New Era, Black Apple, Rocksmith and Diamond Supply), and an all-star hip-hop show featuring a DJ set by Q-Tip, and performances by Wale and Nas.

Fans arrived early to make the most of the four hour event. Show host, comedian Affion Crockett, got the crowd warmed up before Wale took the stage to a roar of cheers. He rocked the mic with numerous crowd favorites and right when the packed venue had reached a fever pitch, Wale kicked it up a notch by bringing out Philly’s own Freeway to perform with him. The place went nuts.

Q-Tip then took over on the decks again, dropping hip-hop favorites (including several Tribe Called Quest jams) that had everyone in the crowd singing along. At one point he teased the crowd saying, “Wouldn’t it be be sick if Phife & Ali were backstage and they came out and we had an impromptu Tribe show? The crowd went nuts with anticipation but it was not to be.

After a short delay, Nas hit the stage and like Wale, played fan favorites from his large catalog of songs which kept the Electric Factory bumping until it was time for everyone to head back to reality. It’s not every day you get treated to a show like that for free.

You can view an expanded photo gallery below:

Steve Angello: Swedish House Mania at the Electric Factory

Arriving at the Electric Factory prior to sound check on Friday night (September 7, 2012) we could instantly tell that it was going to be a special evening. UniverCity Entertainment had brought out the big guns. Six cryo cannons, six confetti cannons, hazers, and lasers covered the front of the stage with a large digital wall hanging behind the DJ booth. While the visual aspects of the show would be stunning, there was little doubt that fans were coming out for the music. That’s the kind of drawing power that Steve Angello (of Swedish House Mafia and Size Records fame) has.

The first opening spot of the night went to youngster Max Gold. Whether it was nerves, unfamiliarity with the equipment, or an issue outside the realm of our knowledge, the opening set was a bit of a technical disaster. The sound cut out completely at least three times during his set and the term “train-wreck” was thrown around several times in the audience.

The Electric Factory began to fill up as DJ Johnny V took the stage. Johnny V has been developing a strong local following in the Philly region. For proof of this you need look no further than the fact that he was awarded his slot by garnering hundreds of votes in an online contest. His versatility across several EDM genres helped set the stage for what was a magical evening. This guy isn’t going anywhere (but up). Johnny V will be playing shows all throughout the fall with the likes of Krewella, Tommy Trash, Figure, Sander Van Doorn, Chris Lake, and beyond.

Next up on the night was Fareoh who brought mayhem to the stage for all of his fans throughout his hour and a half set. Unloading  choice house tracks and heavy electro beats, he kept the crowd pumping on the dance floor, getting them prepped for Steve Angello.

Finally it was time for the headlining set. The hype for this event had been huge, but would Steve Angello deliver the goods? To put it simply, Fed Ex and UPS better watch their backs.

With the venue packed to the gills, Steve Angello threw down an epic set. From start to finish his track selection, audience engagement, and mixing were spot on.

Dropping hits from Swedish House Mafia, his own catalog, and those of his contemporaries, he stunned everyone in the building (from the novice EDM fans to the DJs in the audience) with his wizardry.

As the cryo-cannons blasted, the lasers beamed, and the confetti and streamers rained down, fans rocked out to every last beat. When Angello finally left the stage just before 2am, fans chanted for “one more song”! Alas, there would be no encore, but an encore wasn’t necessary.

[Story by Mik Polli and David Miller – Photo credit: D. Jacob Miller Photography]

You can view the full photo gallery below (click thumbnails to enlarge):