Last Saturday, June 30th, we made the seemingly weekly journey to Governors Island. This Summer, Made Event has brought some exceptional talent to the island off the southern tip of Manhattan including Benny Benassi & Friends and the Laidback Luke’s Super YOU&Me Party. However, until they found out Dash Berlin and Tritonal would be making a trip to the scenic Governors Beach Club, Trance fans were feeling a bit left out. Prayers were answered that one Saturday night when we were taken on a musical journey, escaping the city life of the Big Apple for just a few hours.
As the ferry approached the dock to disembark passengers, many on board began chanting “Tri-ton-al! Tri-ton-al! Tri-ton-al!” We all knew in a matter of minutes that the American Trance duo Tritonal would be taking the stage, yet I personally didn’t quite know what to expect. Sure, I had listened to their sets before, but it wasn’t until later had I realized what a mistake I had made in not circling their set times at past A State of Trance events in Miami and at at EDC New York. Tritonal is a duo of epic proportions when it comes to getting a crowd what they want. They served up energetic, euphoric mixes of tracks I had never once even dreamt of working together, mixing in their own productions and remixes with some of my personal favorites of today’s top producers. The first mix in that really had me going “WOW” with being as unexpected, yet perfectly executed was the transition from Pryda‘s “Allien” into Tritonal‘s own remix of “Wake Your Mind” by Cosmic Gate. As the sun continued to drop minute by minute, Ttritonal raised the energy level with some inspiring mashups were dropped as well including Chris Schweizer‘s mash-up of Above & Beyond‘s “Alone Tonight” with Omnia & Ira‘s “Fusion” (known as “The Fusion Tonight (Chris Schweizer Mashup)“). Two additional set highlights came with two tracks, known as nothing short of anthems, when the guys dropped Porter Robinson‘s “Language” and Jochen Miller’s “Zodiac”.
Overall, the duo surprised me beyond my wildest dreams. When asked how to describe their set afterwords, I had to describe them as being on par with Dada Life as the most energetic DJs (singular, duo, or trio) I had ever seen live. I’m hard pressed to think of another time when I think the DJs enjoyed playing the set more than the crowd enjoyed jumping and singing along to their set. With that being said, I won’t be missing another set by these two given the opportunity.
At 9pm sharp, we began the last leg of our musical journey for the night. Dash Berlin, Trance legend, was taking control of the crowd’s mind, body and soul. I’ve been lucky enough to see a few sets of Dash in person, and have listened to countless live sets of his, so I had an inkling of what we might be able to expect for the next 3 hours. Dash opening up with Thomas Gold‘s remix of “The Wave” by Miike Snow was just the beginning of the confirmation of my suspicions. His track selections are superb, able to pick out the most heartfelt lyrics both in his own productions and in others. He did just that when he dropped Gareth Emery‘s “Concrete Angel,” a track that no matter where or when it’s played allows fans to think about those special to them in the world no matter how far away in time or distance they are from them. He didn’t let the moment subside however, as he transitioned into his own track “World Falls Apart” with live vocals from Jonathan Mendelsohn. Mendelsohn belted out the lyrics, fighting to stay louder than the crowd even with the microphone. There’s something to be said about a live singer who has the ability to supersede the emotion of a track recording in a live setting. Mendelsohn was able to do just that on both “World Falls Apart” and a track later in the set “Better Half Of Me.”
Besides his amazing production and DJing skills, Dash Berlin is also famous for crafting some of the best mashups in the business. Known as “Dashups” fans eagerly await them to drop, hoping to catch a new one every show. One I had not personally heard live yet was waiting for me during the second half of the set. When “Zombie Promises (Dash Berlin Dashup)” dropped, the crowd broke out into the now world famous chant. The Kernkraft 400 and Nero mashup (well, Dashup) was a perfect blend of old school with new school; a famous old beat (actually the Chris Schweizer remix of the track) with a spice of sweet lyrics.
Dash Berlin proved once again why his sets never fail to amaze. He finds amazing ways to interact with the crowd at periods during his set, including handing out 3 full cases of water during his set to those fans in the front who had been positioned there nearly the entire day. He also tossed out t-shirts and signed vinyl records of his latest album, and sent messages via scrolling text to on an iPad he hoisted over his head. If you have yet to see the legend at work, make sure you take the opportunity to see Dash at his finest. He has attracted many friends of mine into the electronic music scene, and moved them from Trance non-believers to fans after just one live experience; who knows what he could do for you.