Event Review: Electric Stampede Stomped My Brain
Nashville North is a country-themed nightclub out in the middle of nowhere, a.k.a Norval, Ontario and I’m very familiar with the place. I’ve gotten ‘Nashty’ on many occasions. So when I found out this sanctuary to whiskey, denim, short-shorts, flannel and cowboy hats was holding an EDM rave… well really they had me at ‘whiskey’, but I still felt the compulsion to experience what it was like when EDM invades a country bar. The wooden, railed off and sunken line dancing floor was filled to the brim with neon glow-stick clad, half-naked girls, grinding on and making out with one another (like a sea of Miley Cyrus'), while American flags and buffalo skulls adorned the walls, next to cow-girl themed go-go dancers on elevated stages.
They called it 'Electric Stampede' and it was pretty fucking crazy.
First off, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention the wait to get into the place. The lines at Nashville can get pretty huge and it just so happened be a polar-vortex level of cold out that night, so it sucked extra hard. So by the time I got in and grabbed a double Jack n’ Coke to make up for my lost pre-drink buzz, Ryan Shepard had already hit the stage.
Ryan Shepherd does these hardcore head banging remixes of recognizable dance music that sounds like it would if it was coming out of The Matrix. Everything is kicked up a few dozen notches on the intensity scale from how you’re used to it. Shepherd will also throw you a few curve balls, as the set goes on. It’s almost as if Shepherd likes to warm the audience up with what they’re expecting, but then once they’re in, decides to take some bold chances. Closer to the end of the set, Shepherd adds in mixes of more acoustic sounding drum beats, giving the whole set a more organic and natural feel.
I’m grabbing Jack N’ Coke number I-can’t-keep-track anymore, by the time Dzeko and Torres hit the stage.
Dzeko and Torres
Dzeko and Torres don’t seem to be afraid to use anything that’s in the EDM arsenal. For the most part you could say they’re a little more in line with conceptual electro and house music, with light elements of dubstep mixed in, and samples lifted from other songs generally being used sparingly. They’ll change a time signature on you in a heartbeat and ramp up crescendo after crescendo. This is the formula that’s making a name for these guys because if you’re into EDM at all, it’s really hard to not like Dzeko and Torres. Their tracks are hardcore enough for a jaded alt-rock lover and soft enough for any Top 40 loving ‘woo girl.’
You stand in the middle of a crowd in front of a Dzeko and Torres set and you can just watch people loosing their minds. It’s like watching the Harlem Shake on steroids…and acid.
If you’ve ever been to anything in the vein of a ‘rave’, then you know that there’s this thing that happens where the whole dance floor just reaches this sweaty, grindy, a-stranger’s-tongue-in-your-mouth critical mass and Dzeko and Torres totally take it there.
Just before Moguai got on stage, some girl knocked my last Jack N’ Coke out of my hand, so I stole this flower headband thing she was wearing and turned it into my party necklace. If you’re that girl and you’re reading this, you can’t have it back because I gave it to our cab driver.
Now my memory of this part in the night is sincerely a little blurry, luckily I was still taking notes on my iPhone the entire night, so for your convenience here are my actual notes directly from my phone during Moguai’s set:
- “Everybody is wet, sweaty, smelly and super drunk. It’s a skin on skin affair.”
- “It’s loud, fast and intense, like good sex.”
- “Remixes of Red Hot Chilly Peppers, but my ears don’t work anymore.”
- “People are on other people’s shoulders. This is a fucking party.”
- “There’s some elements of harder dubstep, like all the stuff that sounds like a Transformer's orgy.”
So what’s a rave at a country bar like? It’s a shit show, but you know what? Even if you’re not an EDM fan, if you’re a concert junkie or a club rat, you owe it to yourself to go to something like this, watch these guys spin and enjoy the insanity.