Top dance acts energize ravers at EDM fest
Avid fans were far from reaching their energy’s climax after Swedish DJ Alesso set the pace of the recent Ultra Music Festival (UMF) at the Mall of Asia Arena.
Main act Tiësto knew exactly how to electrify a crowd of ravers—some of them tour fest fans, or the so-called Ultranauts—whose energy surged even more at midnight, attempting to build on their enthusiasm by starting with “Split (Only U).”
The set, which had Tiësto’s signature monstrous synths, helped unleash a dance tremor in the arena. Kanye’s “Love Lockdown” was then mixed into the popular track, providing a slow, smooth groove.
Ravers flocked the first indoor leg of the UMF Worldwide tour. Some carried the flags of Guam, Japan, Taiwan, Korea, Thailand and Sweden, and bellowed the lyrics of “Hey, Red Lights,” a mashup of original tracks by Tiësto and Avicii.
They were plunged into a psychedelic space, providing a perfect mix of techno and trance music.
Tiësto drastically changed the mood with the remix of Coldplay’s “Yellow.” The ballad unleashed a fresh, dreamlike sound—almost too serene for an EDM fest—before club tones took over its chorus.
The UMF deck was earlier ruled by Alesso, whose set focused on the tracks of his debut album, “Forever.” He started with “Under Control,” then moved on to more aggressive, old-school house tunes with “Anthem,” “Payday” and “Tear Up the Roof.”
Alesso continued to be unpredictable with his music, which shifted from harsh and hypnotic beats and a string of prominent techno synths, to contemporary jazz riffs.
He played “Dark River” and layered it with beats and echoes that later dropped to the snappier, summer-themed rhythm of “Sweet Escape.”
The crowd went crazy when he played “Years,” “This is What We Came For” and the stomping “Heroes,” during which the arena was flooded with lights as Alesso briefly blasted new music, providing a surreal, fantastical intro to crowd-favorite “Calling (Lose My Mind).”
“This remix is three years old,” Swedish DJ Alesso told the crowd, who cheered at the first notes of the remixed anthem, “Titanium.”
“I Wanna Know” was also played in its entirety, which showed the kind of “soul” Alesso integrated into the EDM genre.
Interestingly, it was the second time Hardwell’s performance was canceled in Manila at the last minute, which disappointed fans.
The artist couldn’t make it to the show because of the weather, but the DJ showed up at the Japan leg of the Ultra Worldwide tour the day after.
Another EDM household name, Jauz, took Hardwell’s place, while Fedde LeGrand performed again for the festival’s revelers for the second year.
With the UMF Manila stage fielding bigger names since the festival kicked off last year, the likes of Major Lazer, Martin Garrix, Calvin Harris, David Guetta and Deadmau5 could possibly be orchestrating an appearance at a rave party here soon—or, at least, that’s what the Ultranauts are wishing for.
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