By: Shayla Lee
As a long-time fan of Porter Robinson, I was ecstatic when I had the chance to cover STACKED in Edmonton, an event that Porter Robinson headlined under his new moniker, Virtual Self. I went into the event with an open mind and was completely blown away by all of the performers. My review of Virtual Self’s set and some of the highlights from my night can be found below!
When it comes to electronic live sets, music can begin to sound the some, and although it is always fun to dance to, I find it can be hard to connect with the artist and their performance on a deep level. Virtual Self’s performance was different. To describe Virtual Self’s performance in three words I would say it was transformative, imaginative, and otherworldly.
Virtual Self’s set began with very dim lighting and the anticipation for the lights and music was so strong you could feel the energy and anticipation from the crowd growing stronger by the second. Entrancing the crowd from the moment he stepped foot onto the stage, Virtual Self immediately transported guests to another world. When the bass dropped and the beautiful lights went off, the crowd went insane. Some people were up on each other’s shoulders, others were dancing and moshing, and many were taking in all of the sights and sounds that came along from Virtual Self’s carefully curated performance.
No attention to detail was spared in this performance. Beautiful visuals in bright blue, purple, and green hues played a large part in the set and a magnitude of lasers brought his performance to the next level. Interesting images of eyes, abstract art, and oversized text covered the large LED screen, further entrancing the crowd to become part of the journey that Virtual Self was taking us on. Similar to any other beautiful live set, although I was sad when his performance was over, I felt grateful that I was able to experience it.
Virtual Self’s live set was truly a transformative experience and one that I hope all electronic music fans should witness. To stay up-to-date with Virtual Self, be sure to check out Instagram and Facebook.
The night kicked off with Whipped Cream’s performance at 8 pm. Although she was the opener, I was pleasantly surprised by the large turnout for her set. I wasn’t familiar with her music beforehand but I was very impressed! She had high energy and the crowd went wild when she mixed Rezz.
Since my running playlist is full of Vanic’s remixes, I was looking forward to getting some exercise into my day (this time in the form of dancing) at Vanic’s set. His mixing was upbeat, fun, and he kept the crowd moving throughout his set.
What So Not
What So Not’s remix of RÜFÜS DU SOL’s Innerbloom is one of the most beautiful remixes I have ever heard. When he played it at STACKED, I teared up. As one of electronic music’s biggest rising stars, I feel grateful I was able to see What So Not in a fairly intimate venue with a great crowd.
I had the chance to see Jauz at Electric Forest this year and he is definitely a hard-hitting DJ and producer who mixes extremely bass-heavy. His set was so intense I thought I may actually lose my hearing. The level of intensity he brings when he mixes is next-level and it was an interesting juxtaposition with Virtual Self’s set who was following soon after.