Well folks, it's the moment we've all been waiting for: the Electronic Daisy Carnival lineup is finally here. With EDC being one of the largest dance music festivals in the entire country, you can be sure this lineup is stacked. Everything from psytrance to drum & bass to big room house is represented, and world-famous producers will be spinning their hearts out to audiences on the Vegas Motor Speedway.
Though I’m excited to see these long standing acts, I also wanted to delve into the names that I didn't know as well - the non-headliners - and I couldn't have been more blown away by how much pure gold I found. Lovers of all genres should not forget to check out these lesser-known acts when the main stages are packed like sardine boxes. And if, like me, you're a bit of a newcomer to the world of heavy bass and hardstyle then heaven awaits you. Here are my top 5 lesser-known acts that you should all join me in seeing come June 20th.
1. Darren Styles – Let’s start off with one of the fathers of hardstyle, Darren Styles. The pounding 170 beats per minute is truly an adrenaline inducing endurance test. And Styles never fails to keep his crowds up to the challenge. Styles and the entire Basscon stage are guaranteed to have interminable basslines and energy for the entire EDC weekend. If you're more of a trance lover and are a little wary of the hardstyle scheme, then listen to Styles' remix of "When I Close My Eyes" by Dougal, Gammer & Jenna complete with a melodic lull of piano, synth pads, and vocals made for trance lovers, paired with an even more melodic hardstyle anthem drop. Oh - my - god. Syles is truly a must see.
2. Tchami - Kiss the days of being unfamiliar with Tchami goodbye. Not only is it his first time performing at EDC Las Vegas, but he is also one of the most anticipated DJs on the lineup. Tchami made his way into the scene with his remix of AlunaGeorge's "You Know You Like It" and never looked back. If you want to hear sounds you've never heard before, and basslines that are irresistible to dance to, find your way to Tchami's set on day one. His tracks "Shot Caller" and "Untrue" practically move your body for you. See for yourself and I’ll see you there.
3. Destroid - Destroid is another debut performance at EDCLV, so all you bassheads can be sure they'll put on quite the show. The group consists of Excision, Downlink, KJ Sawka (from Pendulum) – yes, all of those people in one place. They wear suits that look like they were taken straight from the Basscon stage structure. They play live instruments - real live drums, real live MIDI guitars. Listen to "7 Bounce" and "10 Funk Hole" to get an idea of what I'm talking about. This set is sure to be wild and if you don't like dubstep, at least go for the most entertaining watching-people-dance experience you will probably ever witness in your life. After listening to only a few tracks, this had already become an act I am now dying to see live.
4. Chocolate Puma - Do you like to dance? Do you have ears? Are you reading this sentence right now? If you answered yes to any of these questions I can guarantee Chocolate Puma is an act you don't want to miss. Hailing from the Netherlands, this energetech-house duo (see what I did there?) is as wildly sweet as they sound. But don’t worry, the sounds of Chocolate Puma are the only thing that will be going straight to your hips. Think of a sound like Art Department and My Digital Enemy with a hint of Jack Beats circa 2010, then listen to"2000 People" & "Step Back" and meet me at this set on day one. I will be the one intermittently dancing my ass off and just watching Zki & Dobre bob their heads together - it's adorable.
5. Booka Shade - Last but not least - Booka Shade. This Berlin-based duo is fairly lesser known for how long they've been around in the EDM scene. Check out Many Rivers and Love Inc. but don't be fooled by their ambient sounding tracks. These German house producers know how to throw down live. I caught them at EDC 2013 while walking past the Cosmic Meadow stage, and needless to say our group didn't bother to walk any further. This is definitely a group deserving of a top 5 suggestion.
So that’s the list. Listen up and gear up – t-minus 12 days ‘til liftoff.