SuperCity Summer 2016
w/ DJ Snake, Carnage, Skrillex, ASAP Ferg, Krewella, Laidback Luke, Kiiara, Sage the Gemini, DJ Sliink, Team EZY, Marty Grimes, Jennifer Knight
August 19, 2016
Summer is undoubtedly that time of the year when festival dominate the concert circuit across every stretch of the imagination. They can be large or small, but no matter the size, a festival can be completely make or break, as most fans have been keeping their expectations high since the lineup announcements (which generally come between January and March). This year's hype was no exception when it was announced that the one and only Skrillex would be taking over O.Co Coliseum for the highly anticipated SuperCity Summer Festival. This event is riding high off of the buzz generated from Super Bowl City Week event "SuperCity" (headlined this past February by Skrillex's Jack U counterpart, Diplo. Ironically, Skrillex played a secret Super Bowl Weekend show only a few miles away in San Francisco while Diplo performed).
The show began around 3 PM. After braving the general Bay Area traffic that any longtime concertgoer should be accustomed to by this point, I walked in around the time that DJ Sliink was performing. Shortly after, Sage The Gemini took the stage and performed a highly entertaining and rather unforgettable set of hip-hop music. He took his persona off of the stage, jumping into the crowd and running past the barricades to connect with his legions of fans. You'd think he was headlining by the way the crowd reacted.
Around the time that Laidback Luke started, you could sense the energy shift in the building. Before, it was a mix of emcees and DJs. Now, we were getting into electronic territory, the genre that was most prominently displayed on the bill. Laidback Luke is a DJ that doesn't disappoint. He showcased a mix of electro and house tracks during his hour long set, got fans excited, all while appearing...well, laidback.
Krewella brought an incredibly unique set to the SuperCity stage, and it was the first time I had seen them since they had brought forth the implementation of live instruments into their set. It was different to hear live drums layered on top of electronic beats, but it worked rather well. The electric guitar gave some of the heavier songs a little bit of an extra kick. Sisters Yasmine and Jahan Yousaf made the entire stage their playground, running around the entire length of the stage setup while switching between singing and DJing to a now massive crowd.
The sun had started to set, and the last hip-hop set of the night, ASAP Ferg, commenced. If Sage The Gemini seemed like an intense performance, then ASAP Ferg turned the level in the coliseum up to 11. I was sincerely impressed by ASAP's ability to command an audience. The crowd was finally ready for the headliners.
I was rather surprised that Skrillex was placed in the middle of the show, since he was billed as a headliner, but it made a bit of sense after thinking about it. At this point, attendance was at its peak, people weren't in a hurry to leave and catch the train, so in a way, he technically did have the headlining set. And with that, he put on the best set of the entire evening. Yes, I will always be partially biased because Skrillex is my favorite electronic artist, but you can't deny that he's so goddamn great at what he does. If you see him multiple times, you can see the evolution in the DJ sets he performs and you notice something a little different every time. This time around, I noticed his inclusion of classic rock and heavy metal riffs and vocal patterns, which he successfully mashed together with blaring dubstep and electro-house drops. Add in some pyro, CO2, and sparklers, and you've got on hell of a show.
Carnage followed, and I have to say that his performance surprised me in a great way. I've seen him a few times before SuperCity, but this was quite a show. Following the acts that came before him can be a difficult feat, but he proved that he deserved to be up there with the best of them. Blaring hip-hop and trap beats mixed with intense electronic moments made for an incredible hour of music.
Closing the evening was DJ Snake. I had recently seen him perform at Bill Graham Civic Auditorium on the Pardon My French tour with Tchami. The show was more of the same (which was fantastic) but sprinkled in were a few new tracks from Snake's debut album, Encore (and would you look at that? It's available now!) It was very cool to see both Snake and Carnage in a stadium setting however, a venue I'd never seen them previously inhabit here in the Bay Area.
From the moment I stepped in the door to the second I left to try and catch the final BART train of the evening, the energy at SuperCity never dropped. While there were some minor technical flaws throughout, the show was great overall. I look forward to checking out whatever massive lineup they bring to the Bay Area next year.
Super City Festival
Sage The Gemini
This has been another Shameless Promotion.