Above & Beyond @ Epic, Minneapolis

November continues to sound with amazing talent in the midwest and this weekend was one of the biggest. Above & Beyond came through Minneapolis and Chicago. And Deadmau5 stopped in Chicago and Detriot. A couple of months ago, I started listening to Deadmau5 and was quite excited to find out he'd be in Chicago soon enough. Well, after waiting too long to form a party, Deadmau5 sold out without me... I was disappointed, but he'll be back.

Above & Beyond

Yes, Above & Beyond were my plan B for Friday Night... BUT it was the best thing that could've happened. Above & Beyond played some beautiful uplifting trance that sparked my long forgotten love of the genre. It's absolute candy to my ears. This ended up being one of my absolute favorite nights of the year.

They began the night with their recent remix of Dirty Vegas "Tonight"

They also played one of their new songs, "On a Good Day"

Both songs titles clearly describe the loving atmosphere of the night.

...and to complement to beautiful ear candy, was wonderful eye candy too..

Electronic Dance Music

But, before the beauty, we were greeted with the sound of Boom Jinx, which was a perfect introduction back into Trance. Boom Jinx played tracks nearly identical to the Trance I started off on around a decade ago. The simple beauty of build ups and tear downs in an absolute aura of melody. It was a warm feeling to hear that sound again. But it certainly made me question the evening.

Over the past years, I've paid most attention to Sasha, Digweed, Moby, Ladytron, Way out West (Jody Wisternoff and Nick Warren), and the DJs of Hybridized.org. Way out West was really my only link back to Trance, and both Jody and Nick are almost exclusively Progressive House now. I've heard a few things from Armin and Paul Van Dyk, but never followed up.

It was odd to think that Trance hadn't evolved at all in the past 10 years, if this is what Trance today sounded like. Of course, once Above & Beyond took the stage and blew everyone away (ign dot com), I was foolish to have ever thought that. Though, most of Above & Beyond's set had a very House style to it, in a similar manor to how Paul Van Dyk sounds these days. Once Trance, now a Housey Trance which PVD refers to simply as EDM, or Electronic Dance Music.

I find this odd, since the term itself implies it covers the entire genre of music, rather than just a sub-genre. Maybe with using this blanket term, they're trying to get everyone else on earth to stop calling electronic music "Techno", and start calling it "Electronic Dance Music" or "EDM" or whatever. It would make sense since most the Top 10 DJs in the World play tracks in genres that either are EDM or at least orbit it.

Do people still refer to electronic music as "Techno" anyways? The only group I can think of who might even be considered in that sub-genre are The Crystal Method.


As mentioned before, this was Plan B for Friday Night. Though, I could've saved the 4.5 hour drive to Minneapolis and gone to Above & Beyond in Chicago (2.5 hour drive) on Saturday Night instead. They were at Vision in Chicago, though, and I'm getting rather sick of that place.

The vast majority of people who go to Vision are those only interested in the night life rather than the music. It was a bit of an eye opener going to the House of Blues are being completely surrounded with genuine fans, rather than a bunch of douche bags with popped collars, dark glasses, glamour muscles and are only there to be "seen".

Minneapolis' "scene" was born out of raves. All of the kids back in the 90s who partied in barns and rundown community centers, run and contribute to the nightlife these days. That genuine fandom and experience makes Minneapolis one of the best places in the nation to hear any EDM performance.

For proof of Minneapolis' fantastic electronic music community, you need only check out MN Vibe, which was fostered and promoted talent for the past 8 years. Not to mention, Sound In Motion who are the ones that bring all the fantastic talent to Minneapolis.

Boom Jinx

But anyways, Boom Jinx played some pretty rad songs. It was a lot of fun, until he started acting in that douche-baggy DJ manor.

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