Excision made his much anticipated return to Philadelphia on Friday, March 21st with support from ill.Gates and Dirtyphonics, and quite literally, almost destroyed the building.
Last time Excision was in Philly, he performed as part of his super group ‘Destroid’ with fellow bandmates KJ Sawka and Downlink. However, his solo act is just as high energy and bass heavy as anything you’ve ever heard.
As we walked into the venue, ill.Gates was starting off the night with a very creative blend of breaks, dubstep, and some drum and bass. ill.Gates, a very sample-heavy artist, wow’d the audience by performing a few tracks ‘live’ by sampling every part of the song on his Midi Fighter, while even displaying a video feed of it happening live. It’s not every day you have the honor to see a DJ not only mix great tracks, but also include a live element into the mix. His visuals were on point, and overall one of the best opening sets we’ve see in a while.
Following ill.Gates’ insanely creative set, were Pitchin and Charly, two of the three members of high energy trio, Dirtyphonics (Pho was absent). It was my first time checking out Dirtyphonics and I was overall pleased with their set. They quickly kicked the crowd into gear with some electro and big room remixes, heavy hitters like “Slow Down” by Yellow Claw, DJ Snake, & Spanker, hometown favorite Victor Niglio’s ‘Animals’ remix, and their original drum & bass track, “Walk In The Fire”. Dirtyphonics wasted no time waking up the crowd by shooting them with water guns countless times, ensuring they stayed ‘hydrated’. Dirtyphonics was the perfect cross over to keep Philly eagerly waiting for the heavy bass and massive 150,000 watt system that Excision was about to introduce.
Finally, Excision took the stage. When his 150,000 watt system was turned on, you could feel it immediately. Every bass hit, every drop, every kick, you could literally feel reverberate through you body and the entire venue. The system was so loud and so bass-rich, that the music wasn’t only a listening experience, but also a full emotional experience; music, you could literally feel. With every bass boom, you could feel the shockwaves enter and exit your body. It sounds absolutely insane to say, but if you haven’t been able to experience the sound system that Excision brings to his events, you need to add it to your bucket list and feel it for yourself at least once.
Aside from his massive sound, Excision kept the audience entertained with his incredibly elaborate ‘Executioner’ stage design. For those asking, “What’s the Executioner?” The Executioner is a staggering 420 sq. foot 3-D projection screen that shows graphics done by graphic engineers all over the world to create amazing graphic concepts that go in sync with whatever song he’s playing. For example; When Excision played his new collaboration with Space Laces, ‘Rock You’, two robot arms appeared on each side clapping & smashing along to the ‘We Will Rock You’ sample by Queen. The Executioner is nothing short of engineering genius.
Excision closed his set with a song everyone wanted to hear, his collaboration with Space Laces titled ‘Get Stupid’, and t was not something to be missed. Two huge pillars that stomped to the beat were projected onto the Executioner & huge waves of bass were unleashed through the PK speakers. As the song built up, so did the crowd. The crowd went ballistic with energy when the song dropped & Excision successfully tore down the house that is the Electric Factory. There’s a reason why Excision is one of the biggest names in bass music and last night was only but a proving point as to why he’s as beloved as he is. Every single year, he keeps upping the ante on his enormous country-wide tours and this year was no exception. If you couldn’t make it this year, then next year is definitely a must! It’s something everyone should experience at least once.
You can view additional photos in the gallery below (click thumbnails to enlarge):