Dim Mak: while you brought a diverse line up, to say the least, and an even more diverse audience, you did throw one hell of a Halloween party. Originally scheduled to take place at Pier 94, hence the event’s name “Pier of Fear,” Steve Aoki's Aokify America tour came storming into New York City this past Friday at Hammerstein Ballroom instead. The relocation was due to certain permits being denied. Featuring rapper, Waka Flocka and bad boy, Borgore, this tour brought a whole lot of sound and even more excitement with it's special guest, Pharrell Williams. So much that I was sure the wooden ground below me would rupture.
I first walked in to Waka Flocka. The crowd seemed to love him. However, I don’t get it. The headliner is an electro-house DJ and in gets thrown this rapper from Atlanta. I am still trying to make sense of this line up but all in all, the people enjoyed it, which made for a good crowd.
I am not used to the breaks in between sets. So, once Waka Flocka ended his, it was about 10 until the next performer.
Joined on stage by two strippers and cartoon-masked porn in the background, Borgore doesn’t take the on-stage entertainment lightly. From the Dubstep in his roots, to trap, electro house, and even a hard style song played that night, he aimed to please. Being the huge Borgore fan that I am, I always appreciate more or his original material. But then again, I look up during songs like “That Lean” and no one’s moving a muscle. He even asked for a mosh pit during “Kiss my Lips” that never happened. As soon as he dropped Flux “I Can’t Stop,” the crowd actually came alive and realized this guy has more in him than just the filthy Dubstep he began with. He brought Waka Flocka and special guest, Paige on stage to perform their new track “Wild Out” but Paige was lip singing and no one seemed too dazzled. I wanted to be upset about the lack of constant bass to my face, but then he turns around and ends his set with “Nympho” and “Decisions.” Oh Asaf, I could never be mad at you.
After another 10-minute intermission, up came Pharrell Williams.
I stepped back for this one, knowing the masses would bombard the stage. As he approached the stage, his light presentation flashed the phrase “I am OTHER” behind him. I am OTHER is a YouTube channel and cultural movement by Pharrell Williams that is dedicated to thinkers, innovators, and outcasts. Claiming to be "Other" himself, he encourages others to find their individuality and steer away from conforming to the stereotypes. He showed his humbleness by getting the crowd to sing “Happy Birthday” to one of his buddies. How sweet! I will admit that I absolutely love his song with Swedish House Mafia, “One” and of course Daft Punk, “Get Lucky.” I also caught myself singing along to certain top 40 hits like Robin Thicke, “Blurred Lines” and Nelly, “Hot in Herre.” Again, confused by the line up, but it worked for this crowd.
Finally up, the man of the night who came to Aokify us all, Asian Jesus himself.
Who doesn’t like a cake to the face from time to time? I believe he chucked 4 cakes that night. Steve Aoki definitely knows how to mix it up to cater to everyone’s musical palate. Whether you came for him or not, you just couldn’t keep still, especially when the drop of “Boneless” hit. Another one of his jumpers is “No Beef,” got to love that one! To my dismay, Chester and Mike from Linkin Park did not show up when "A Light That Never Comes" was played. However, he has announced that they will be joining him in LA on November 15th! In a way, the vibe of Steve’s crowd closely resembles the excitement at one of Dada Life’s shows. This type of music just compels you to jump constantly, arms held high, clapping for hours. To be honest, these are the best kinds of shows, all around. If you had a friend who wasn’t a die-hard EDM fan like you, this would be the show to take them to. So, find out, here, when this circus comes to a town near you.