As we walked up to Verboten's heavy metal doors on Thursday night, there was an overwhelming atmosphere of family-oriented bliss emanating from the outside smoking section as well as the Control Room's dance floor. The reason for this? Well-loved tropical house masterminds Hotel Garuda had just taken the stage and were catapulting feel good vibes straight into the crowd. Better known by some of us as Chris and Aseem, or Manila Killa and Candle Weather, the duo has been making waves in the tropical house scene (get it? WAVES?) and producing impressive tracks that you can't help but swing to.
At the forefront of the night was the undoubtedly positive vibes rising from the audience. As Verboten usually boasts talent who mixes darker, deeper, "deep sea ocean creatures on LSD" type music (which I do indeed love), it was awesomely refreshing to see bright smiles and expressions of high spirits running throughout. Marking Hotel Garuda's Brooklyn debut, the show brought in hoards of friends and family from around the East coast.
Hotel Garuda's set was the epitome of a fun-loving time. Dropping topical classics like Giraffage's Tell Me and Dunk Dunk's Sax Education had people in a sensual flurry of movement. At one point, they even dropped some Taylor Swift, which in any other situation would have enraged me. Morale was so high I couldn't help but sing along! And of course, one of the closing tracks was the beloved Rhythm of the Night remix (originally by Corona) - one of the songs that put Hotel Garuda on the map just a year ago.
The headliner, Sam Feldt, brought a different flavor to Verboten's scene. His set was much more big room and progressive than his predecessors - although it was not so much my taste, I will say he dropped a certain remix of 21 Questions (that's right, 50 cent) that I've been trying to find for days. Feldt played a solid two hour set that had most of the crowd in a confused, but pleased atmosphere.
The third act, ARGONAUT&WASP, were the ones who really blew me away. Of course, I love Hotel Garuda, but I had never heard of this new duo and had no idea what to expect. A shame that by 3:30am, the venue was virtually empty, because the pair put on a killer performance. A nice parallel to Feldt's style, ARGONAUT&WASP played a concoction of darker house and techno with splashes of obscure but fun tracks. Rob Hes' The Prophecy and Claude Vonstroke's Make A Cake stood out as moments when people got especially down. Despite being sad to see so many of the original crowd missing such an stand-out performance, it was clear that those still dancing were feeling the music on a molecular level.
Whether you consider leaving the club at 4 AM an early or late night, if you were present, at least you can be sure it was a great night. A successful Brooklyn debut for our friends Hotel Garuda; and of course discovering new talent that I wouldn't have known otherwise - what's not to enjoy? Cheers to another success!
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