Article by: Plamen Valkov
Photos by: Plamen Valkov & Max Sprott
DanceTour is unquestionably one of the unique facets of the Dutch music scene. A festival of magnitude, which travels throughout the country to select cities. Looking at the lineup, DanceTour holds its own against many of the other big Dutch festivals. The unique part about this one, however, is that it is free for all to attend.
On this sunny day, Undrgrnd Sound EU travelled to Arnhem to cover this leg of the ‘tour’, where we witnessed DJ’s: Marc Moore, La Fluente, Yellow Claw, Frankie Rizardo, Bassjackers, Laidback Luke, Blasterjaxx and MC Ambush throw it down in front of a 10 000 strong crowd of Arnhem’s youth.
Arnhem’s very own Marc Moore opened the stage with a selection of deep and tech house. Starting the day off with “No Eyes” by Claptone, he gradually worked his way up the energy ladder for the still gathering crowd.
As winner of the Pepsi DJ Clash, Marc was selected to represent his city from a pool of hundreds of contestants.
The local boy really hit home when he played “Au Seve” by Julio Bashmore, which was met with cheers from the now thickening crowd.
We managed to sit down with Marc for an interview after his set. To find out more about his journey towards opening DanceTour, read our interview. (Full Interview: http://bit.ly/QWrPZS)
La Fuente picked up where Marc Moore left off with his soulful, upbeat and uplifting style. Playing tracks, which made one feel as if they were somewhere on a beach in Ibiza, La Fuente bought the heat to an already warm day. Throughout his set, the Stadsblokken filled up to capacity as the notoriously difficult Dutch crowd were grooving to his sound.
Halfway through his set, he dropped an unknown garage house bootleg of “Happy” by Pharrell Williams, which caught the crowd’s attention, prompting them to groove even harder than they already were.
Showcasing his ability to adjust to the context of his set, La Fuente took the audience through tropical deep and tech, to electro and then rounded off with some big room, perfectly setting the stage for Yellow Claw.
What followed can only be described as an hour of uninterrupted, raw, energy. The trio bought their typical upbeat trap and big room to the table, which really did it for the young Dutch crowd. For the duration of their set, there was not a drop, which didn’t wreak havoc. MC Bizzey made it a performance to remember, leading the crowd into, what could have quite possibly been, the world’s largest mosh pit.
The group from Amsterdam put their knowledge of the Dutch crowd to good use, making it very difficult for the next act and draining every ounce of energy from the crowd.
Franky Rizardo, another local DJ, was the one who faced the difficult task of resetting the energy after Yellow Claw’s annihilation. He started his set with a mashup of “Jack” by Breach, which proved an effective way to bring the energy back down and bridge the gap between hype and groove. For the rest of his set, he stayed true to his style, playing lots of percussion oriented Latin house, which, combined with the sunny weather, created a wonderfully positive vibe. He did, however, also find a way to cater to the younger audience by mixing tracks of his regular style with well-known acapellas.
Despite the fact that he came on after a very difficult act to follow, Frankie managed to put together an incredible set.
Marlon Flohr of the Bassjackers took the stage after Frankie Rizardo and immediately made his presence felt with the strong distorted kick drum of today’s big room sound. This got the audience back on the hype wave. The groove, so carefully constructed by Frankie, quickly turned to epicness as Marlon pounded the crowd with big room track after big room track.
It proved to be much of the same for the rest of his set. The melodic breaks and powerful drops resounded strongly with the crowd and were received with hands in the air.
After a high energy set by the Bassjackers, it was now time for Laidback Luke. Following a short pause in the music and a proper introduction from MC Ambush, Luke picked up where the Bassjackers left off. Keeping the crowd on the same wavelength, he began his set with a combination of big room and Melbourne bounce, as his tour manager, brother and Kung Fu Sifu all watched on from behind.
Unique to his performance, Luke brought up a drummer by the name of Nebat Drums who played a live hand drum accompaniment over a few tracks. Accompaniment was then followed by a battle of sorts, where Luke scratched and Nebat responded on the drums. This was received with applause from the crowd, who seemed to really enjoy the improvisational live addition.
Luke’s set can be best described as a journey through the epic, melodic and groovy. Starting with big room, moving through progressive and ending on a string of deep and tech house. Even playing the classic “Rip Groove” by Double 99, a track released in 1997, Laidback Luke kept the vibe strong with his masterful crowd control and variety of styles.
We caught up with Luke after his set and asked him a few questions about his recent diaper duty break, unknown music tastes, and controversy around a video of him, Steve Aoki and Sander van Doorn that recently went viral.
Watch Our Video Interview w/ Laidback Luke Below:
The final performance of this eventful journey to Arhnem was by Blasterjaxx, a Dutch DJ Duo. Their performance brought back the epic big room vibe, which seemed to strongly dominate throughout the day.
Playing massive track after massive track, they set the mood for a glorious sunset that cast a shadow over the passionate crowd. A crowd that was in full affect all the way through to the very last track. Blasterjaxx did a great job in closing out, what was a day that was all about the music.
DanceTour in Arnhem pleasantly surprised us. The sheer scale of the festival combined with the musical talent available, made it a day to remember.
The fact that we were at a festival that was of no charge to those attending was something we needed to keep reminding ourselves of. Making music so accessible to the Dutch youth can be seen as one of the many reasons as to why the Netherlands seems to be continuously producing so many big artists and new talents. Simply said; DanceTour is one of the festivals keeping the Dutch ahead of the curve.
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