On Friday, March 22nd, I had the pleasure of being musically aroused by a talented group of DJs, all signed to Ram Records. The Guvernment opened its doors, and drum & bass fans poured into the normally house & trance driven venue. It was the Toronto bass heads’ turn to take over The Guvernment, and that’s exactly what they did.
When I arrived, Loadstar was driving the party. Upon entering the venue, I was greeted by a sea of rhythmically thrashing partiers. The mood was pumping, and the people were going wild. This Bristol based duo started the night off right with some powerful drum & bass bangers that surely no one could resist moving to. They even threw in a little more melodic, glitch-hop type tracks to spice up their set and give us a little variety on the dance floor.
Ravers continued to trickle in as Loadstar dropped their original track Black & White, which boomed through the venue. The crowd sang along to SubFocus’s Falling Down while keeping up their fast-paced movement. Long-time bass heads went even harder when they duo mixed Nero’s Crush On You, with it. Together they created a skillful mash-up that I’m sure we all wish we could listen to again and again. The boys continued to feed the mainstream bass fans with huge Knife Party tracks such as Bonfire and Internet Friends VIP. Some might find it a little cliché to drop such popular songs, but it did not fail to blow the roof off the place. We were all loving it.
Delta Heavy took the decks and began his set with his explosive track Empire. Clearly well versed in new electronic releases, he transitioned into a sure to be dance floor favourite, Boy Oh Boy by Diplo & GTA, which features significant samples from Missy Elliot’s Work It. The hard-hitting beat switched up the rhythm and kept the audience raging. Continuing to stray away from the evening’s theme of drum & bass, Delta Heavy threw down Dillon Francis’s single Bootleg Fireworks (Burning Up), which stirred up a bouncy moombahton vibe. He then gave us a little taste of that DNB flavour with a charged remix of Major Lazer’s Get Free, a more mellow tune altered to get your body moving fast.
To satisfy the explosion of trap popularity in the bass music scene, he dropped Baauer’s remix of Rollup by Flosstradamus, a hip-hop dance floor hit. The party goers leaned back and got down to the seductive sounds of trap. Delta had a few more hip-hop bangers up his sleeve. I wasn’t at all surprised by the following sequence of highly popular bass tracks such as Skrillex’s remix of Goin In by Birdy Nam Nam, Hold On by Rusko and Excision’s Deviance mixed with Knife Party’s Bonfire. The well-known tracks only continued with Delta Heavy’s own Get By mixed into Skrillex’s Breakin A Sweat. As much as I loved all of those tracks, they have been spun again and again. This was certainly confirmed when he played The Bloody Beetroots’ Warp 1.9. I expected a slightly more original set from Delta Heavy, but he came back with a bang and ended his performance with Dog Blood’s Next Order, a heavy, beat-driven track and Dillon Francis’ new remix of Justin Timberlake’s Suit & Tie.
Last, but certainly not least, was the legendary leader of Ram Records, Andy C. This talented DJ put on a heavy, fresh drum & bass performance that would have the skin of any dedicated bass head tingling. He composed an electrifying mix of irresistible & mighty DNB tunes that I can guarantee left all of the attendees craving more. The only aspect of his set that I found a bit off was the repetition of tracks from previous sets during the evening. Once again, I found myself dancing to Rusko’s Hold On and Major Lazer’s Get Free. That took me out of the groove briefly, but Andy had no trouble pulling me back in and delivering an overall terrific jam session.
As I left The Guvernment, all I could think is “I can’t wait to rage hard all over again tomorrow night at the Kool Haus”. There is nothing like Bass Week, my friends. This is only the beginning.
Alix Nikulka – EDM TOR