Bass music fans got their wish on Saturday, September 27th when the ‘Safe In Sound’ Festival rolled into Philadelphia for 8 full hours of music at the Festival Pier on Penn’s Landing. The weather was picture perfect when the doors opened at 3pm and remained that way throughout the event.
With large scale EDM events under some scrutiny as of late, security measures were at an all time high at Festival Pier. Because of this, it took a longer than usual for fans to gain entry to the show (there was a line stretching well down the block when we arrived), but safety should be the number one concern for venues, promoters, and attendees alike, even if that bogs things down a bit at the door.
Once inside, the music kicked off with Architekt holding down the stage for the Philly locals. This isn’t Architekt’s first festival rodeo as he’s played a bunch of large scale events this year including Moonrise Festival in August. He warmed the crowd up nicely until the first touring act, Terravita, hit the stage.
Terravita does a little bit of everything. Start off with some D&B, throw in some Drumstep, add live vocals, and mix liberally and you have the perfect recipe to get the party started. With the venue still relatively empty, we took this time to walk around, talk to some fans, drink some free Rockstar Energy drinks, and rock out to Terravita’s set.
Up next was masked mystery man ƱZ who provided heavy doses of Trap music during his very brief set. For whatever reason, he played for less than 30 minutes. We wanted to stop him backstage and ask him why his time-slot had been scaled back, the only problem was, it’s hard to ask a question of a man with no known identity.
Adventure Club hit the stage following ƱZ. Christian Srigley and Leighton James seem to have their ‘step’ game on lock down. Whether they are dropping Dubstep, Drumstep, Chillstep, reruns of ABC’s ‘Step By Step’, or simply stepping onto the stage (barefoot during this show), it doesn’t seem to matter to their fans. From the moment they hit the DJ booth, a fair share of the crowd (many of them female) lost their collective minds. To their credit, the Canadian duo have a ton of energy on stage and it is thrown back at them many times over by the audience. Everyone seemed to be having a good time during their set (including Krewella’s Yasmine Yousaf who was on hand to support her boyfriend, Leighton James).
With several Americans and Canadians having had their turn to thrill the Philly crowd, it was time for the UK to get into the game. Flux Pavilion stepped up to the plate and knocked it out of the park. What the co-founder of Circus Records lacks in fashion sense, he makes up for in beats, dirty, dirty beats. The only thing more intense than his track selection during his set was the over-use of fog cannons. We did manage to salvage one photo from his performance though. Don’t take our word for it, here it is:
Dubstep, Hardstyle, hearing loss (don’t forget your ear plugs kids)… these are just a few of the things that you can experience during an Excision performance. If you’re a fan of bass music, you’re also sure to experience one hell of a good time. With a Canadian back in control, the party progressed nicely (although sadly for our photo ops, the heavy fog cannon use continued). The sound levels were as mind numbing for this Excision performance as we’ve heard them in some of Philly’s indoor venues and we appreciated that. Yes, there is a thing as too loud. Yes, we’re old; you kids stay off our damn lawn and pull your pants up!
The final performance of the night was saved for another Canadian duo, Zeds Dead. Members DC and Hooks are known for dropping a little bit of everything into their high energy sets from electro, to hip-hop, to (of course) some serious bass (music) in your face. Saturday night was no exception as Zeds Dead bombarded fans with everything but the kitchen sink. Zeds Dead could have just dialed it in after a stellar performance (technical issues aside) in Georgia, at TomorrowWorld, the night before, and judging by the inebriation level of some attendees, it might have gone somewhat unnoticed. However, dialing it in just isn’t in Zeds Dead’s playbook, and they closed out the show on a bang.
When it was all said and done, Safe In Sound Festival was a great way to spend a gorgeous fall afternoon/evening here in Philly. With outdoor events wrapping up for the season, it’s always good to get one more in.
[Photo credit: D. Jacob Miller Photography]
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You can check out an expanded photo gallery below (click images to enlarge):