Published on April 13th, 2012 | by EDMinsider0
Armin van Buuren & Morgan Page: Vancouver Convention Center (Review)
This Saturday night at the Vancouver Convention Center, Armin van Buuren and Morgan Page played to a crowd of over six thousand, the crowning jewel of Blueprint’s 2nd annual Seasons Festival. As you entered the Convention Center’s main hall you were struck by the feeling that you were a part of something elusive in Vancouver: the event gave off the atmosphere of a much larger American/European Festival. Filling in as co-headliner, Morgan Page helmed the DJ booth with fierce conviction. Steve Angello had to fly off because his wife went into labor, but it was clear that Page was not going to let the audience suffer. Dancing angels adorned the stage, wings alight with LEDs. A steady stream of heavy melodic beats got the crowd’s heart racing as we danced under a sea of brilliant lights. Page kept impeccable timing. He knew exactly when to cut away from hard electro beats and transition into surprisingly tender moments giving the audience a momentary break from rocking their hearts out.
As the exceptionally peaceful moment of Adele’s Set Fire to the Rain gave way to Tiesto and Steve Aoki’s Tornado, the music was drowned out in cheers and the crowd became lost in bass. From the VIP area the unobstructed view of the stage was priceless. This was hands down the best lightshow Vancouver had ever seen — better than HSBC’s Celebration of Lights. With a cold beer resting on my private table I felt as though I was in one of the world’s largest clubs. Kaskade’s Eyes belted over the sound system, the tempo ramped up, and the night reached a new level. The crowd became enveloped in elegance, fully aware they were witnessing something unimaginably unique. As the track took a turn you felt bass reverberate through the floor and up your legs. With their own personal dance floor VIP’ers were free to dance in pairs unobstructed, as general admission heaved and swayed in unison feeding on each other’s energy in optimum of communal vitality. As Page wrapped up his set and the lights faded it became clear Blueprint was offering two separate experiences, the swanky no lines VIP club escape and the Electric Daisy Carnival special.
It was time for Armin and skepticism clouded my mind. How could any one man live up to the hype of being the undisputed greatest DJ alive? Then Armin stepped onto the stage and I suddenly agreed with the majority. Armin is rightfully the world’s greatest. The energy in the room was like nothing I had ever felt before: it was alive. Buzzing with electric anticipation—a mixture of excitement and ecstasy. Most EDM events attract diehard party-goers but tonight VCC was filled with music lovers. Thousands of people who were about to see their idol. Armin is still the reason why millions around the world discover and continue to love electronic dance music. He commands a presence that is not to be denied. Torrents of never-ending energy give the audience no choice but to live in the moment. Time freezes and just as you feel like you are going to run out of energy his music recharges you and you realize that you could dance forever. His drops are tantalizing. At first you wait patiently. Then, you are overtaken. You beg Armin to drop the beat. You need it. At the same time, you have to trust him, his timing is perfect: he doesn’t read the audience, he knows what they want before they do. For most of the set you felt as though you were walking through a euphoric wonderland of radiant transcending light. Suddenly a switch flips and the bass drops. The exuberant world you were blissfully indulging in is sucked into a dark vacuum. It was a ride to remember. Playing for two and a half hours Armin Van Buuren gave Vancouver a true DJ experience. We were privileged to take a journey through his fantastical mind and none of us wanted it to end. Hands down, this was Vancouver’s best DJ production and perhaps the best DJ set I have ever seen. I can’t wait till Seasons Festival 2013.