Pretty Lights Illuminates Philadelphia With Live Band Performance

November 4, 2013 -

Ryan Farber

Last Friday night the riverfront of Camden was converted into a meeting ground for the electronic masses. The occasion? Lights Out: Dance With The Dead. Even though Halloween was the night before, thousands of fans converged on the Susquehanna Bank Center to enjoy the spirit of weirdness, dressed to the nines in eclectic costumes and apparel supporting their favorite acts. The night had an energy that you could just feel in the air.

The first thing that I really appreciated was the diversity of the lineup. The show tapped into almost every genre that would fit with an experimental headline set. Co/Op brought the pump-up with electro basslines, going against the grain of HeRobust's heavy trap set and Candyland's Dubstep/OG swagger. For me, however, the most influential of the opening sets was Seven Lions, rocking the venue's population with uplifting progressive dub melodies and drops that kept you swaying with emotion.

Krewella Griffin(Photo Credit: Griffin Mulvey-Hudson)

Time to get wet. An always energetic Krewella took to the stage, talking to the sea of thousands with the hype of a punk rock concert. As Rain Man took to the decks, Yasmine & Jahan got the crowd going with a set complete with live vocals and the consistent engagement of the crowd. Although I have to admit over the past few months I have fallen somewhat out of love with their productions, you can't deny that they puts on one HELL of a live performance. With a set that bounced from dubstep to drum & bass, electro to hardstyle, this lovable weirdo trio kept everyone on their toes and absolutely pumped up for the headlining set.

PL Griffin(Photo Credit: Griffin Mulvey-Hudson)

The moment was finally upon us. A short lull in the music as the production crew took to the stage to set up the multitiered stage, complete with DJ booth, synth stand, drum kit, and duel microphones for brass. Laid back hip-hop subtly played through the speakers as the crowd spent their last few free minutes grabbing waters and drinks or finding their friends, because we all knew that once this set got started, no one was going to want to miss a second. Cue blackout. Cue intro song. Cue Pretty Lights. The full synth and soul-lifting bassline was overpowered only by the enthusiastic roar of the crowd as the soft glow of the stage lights descended on the live band. What was to follow was an emotional roller coaster of experimental sound as Derek (PL) and his compadres showcased tracks from "A Color Map of the Sun" and his earlier albums "Taking Up Your Precious Time" and "Filling Up the City Skies". For a long time fan of his eccentric style, I was thrilled to finally get a chance to witness the magic of Pretty Lights firsthand. It is an experience that every fan of electronic music should have at least once. It will change your world.

(Feature Photo Credit: TJ Waldron)

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