Rezz and friends mesmerized a packed house at The Factory in St. Louis. Mesmerizing visuals and heavy bass were constant themes throughout the night as an extremely talented lineup of artists shared the stage.
The show was opened Denver-based producer A Hundred Drums. Blending elements of electronic and hip hop, AHD’s music has a more ‘human’ feel to it than a lot of the pristine-feeling, lab-grown tracks that permeate the electronic scene these days. I will say, I was expecting there to be more drums involved in this set, however that disappointment was very quickly overtaken by admiration for what A Hundred Drums was doing.
It is not often that you get an electronic show that feels so raw and personal at the same time.
Not much is known about the second act of the night — the electronic duo known as Kasablanca. The pair gave off vague Daft Punk vibes, but without the robot helmets. Their sound landed somewhere between progressive house and melodic techno, which is, admittedly, kind of hard to imagine. Picture Rüfüs Du Sol‘s upbeat energy, but with more of a techno feel and you get Kasablanca. While their identity might be a mystery, it should be well known that this pair of producers know how to throw down.
Third on the stage was DJ and rapper Wreckno. His songs incorporated “wubby” bass and lots of hip hop influences. Numerous samples from the likes of Cardi B, Nikki Minaj, Fergie, JID, Crazy Town and 50 Cent found their way into his set, but all with a wonky, bass-filled twist. Wreckno’s mixes were no doubt impressive, but what I found even more impressive was his rapping ability. Rapping DJs are few and far between, and even fewer can do it well! Wreckno is among those chosen few.
Ending the night was the main event: Rezz, who is commonly referred to endearingly by her audience as “Space Mom”.
Rezz’s hypnotic visuals and plodding bass lines made the listener feel like they have been drafted into some otherworldly army, marching to the rhythm of their fearless leader. The production of this show was phenomenal. Images of mesmerizing spirals (hence, the name of the tour) cascaded across the video boards and pulled the crowd in. Spooky images of demons, spiders and aliens lended themselves to the already otherworldly-feeling music, erasing all thoughts of the outside world. It is often said that attendees of Rezz’s shows sell their soul to the Ukrainian-Canadian DJ. While I can neither confirm nor deny the legitimacy of this statement, I can attest to the fact that Rezz is stealing the hearts of her listeners. That much is evident by watching the crowd react as Rezz’s trippy electronic march continued on.
Rezz songs are not particularly known for their lyrics, some contain very few, but this did not stop the crowd from singing along. Chanting and screaming, the crowd felt the beat and sometimes would telepathically know to yell on the down beats. Seeing that many people move and shout in unison without anyone directing them to do so reminded me of the power of music and how it connects us all, sometimes unconsciously.
Photography by Sean Rider