Ottawa welcomed the 5th ranked in the DJ Mag top 100 poll Above & Beyond (UK) with a completely sold out show last Saturday as the Nation's Capital EDM fans assembled at Barrymore's to enjoy an epic evening.
This is the Above & Beyond (A&B) Tour Bus which was located just besides Barrymore's. You could basically see Tony McGuiness chilling out in the back just before the show. There were a few girls hoping to get into the bus but were turned away by the bodyguard wearing a suit and tie.
The venue was electric when 2 of the 3 Above & Beyond crew took the stage (Paavo was holding the fort in the UK doing their TATW podcast).
The visuals for this tour are simply amazing as we were treated to a cornucopia of geometric figures, jellyfish prancing on the screen, city scenes like New York Timesquare, and an airport scene among others. The one visual that I couldn't get out of my head was the image of skydiver with the beam coming out of his head! A&B had the ability to type a lot of messages to the crowd which was just fantastic and was used many times throughout the night. Of course the one that brought the biggest cheers was the one that said “Best show of the tour thus far”. Thanks guys, we love you too!
If you weren't at this show and wanted to get a sense of what the visuals were like I brought together a few Youtube clips where I thought A&B got some of their inspiration from:
Bjork's Oceania minus Bjork in diamonds:
Cubesato's amazing geometric clip:
Massive Attack's Atlas Air visuals from their live tour last year:
A&B played many of their anthems including Sun & Moon, You Got to Go (I believe they played the Kyau & Albert Remix), Thing Called Love and others. The crowd including myself ate it up as we sung every word loud with lots of enthusiasm! I especially loved 'You Got to Go' because it's a very inspirational track for me personally – this is why I love A&B because they are so positive and generally have really uplifting music that can brighten anybody's day. A&B also played some newer tracks from their newly released Anjunabeats vol. 9 collection including Formula Rossa and Mozart by Mat Zo and Arty. The crowd went especially nuts for Mozart which is making me want to book a trip to Toronto to check out Mat Zo along with Gabriel and Dresden at the Guvernment on Feb 11th.
The first hour and a half had a pretty steady tempo of anthems and lesser known tracks but things clearly ramped up in the last half hour of their set when they started playing banger after banger of higher intensity tracks which really tore up the dance floor with massive positive reaction.
Overall it was a really nice set by A&B as I believe it fulfilled most of the expectations from the crowd. When they played their final track of the night the duo were nice enough to thank the crowd by autographing anything from t-shirts to signs to even ticket stubs. Jono Grant even stayed after the lights went up for a solid 15 minutes to continue signing anything and everything (look at the video link below of him signing a shoe lol).
Above & Beyond are well known to be a really fan friendly DJ trio and tonight proved to be no exception as Ottawa was treated to an amazing night of trance music. Thank you DNA Presents for bringing in one of my favourite DJ acts and hope you guys bring even more trance acts in the future!