A few weeks ago when Sunburn Arena announced that Tiesto was going to be touring India in March 2013, I do not think people prepared themselves for an event of this magnitude. From Mumbai to Bangalore to Delhi, everyone has been talking about Tiesto and by the looks of it will continue to do so for a while.
Tiesto in Mumbai: The first stop
On a Friday afternoon, a legend was slated to perform in the city. Not even the sun could stop us from attending this gig. Mahalaxmi Racecourse was the selected venue for Tiesto’s performance, a performance we are all going to be raving about for a long time. It’s been host to some of the most memorable gigs in the city, some of the worlds greatest DJs have played their best shows here. Well enough about that, its time to head to the venue!
Doors opened at 4pm sharp and the first DJ to play, DJ Willy stepped on stage. DJ Willy has played at some of Mumbai’s hottest clubs for a long time and is currently the resident DJ at Club Royalty. Having played at various clubs in the city, he was familiar with what thrilled the crowd. This was his first ever time playing at a Sunburn Arena gig and I must say he gave it his all.
Nikhil Chinapa, has played a vital role in popularizing EDM in India over the last few years. A strong driving force behind the scenes of Sunburn’s gigs; Mumbai got to witness his drive on stage as well. Having heard him perform before, and finally hearing him again, it made me realize what an eclectic DJ he is. His set gathered people who initially entered and went straight to the bar. That itself says a lot about his performance!
Youngest of the lot, Shaan has gained popular support of the younger EDM ravers of Mumbai. And as such, his charisma is reflected in his set. As the sun went down in Mumbai city, Shaan finished his set with Chris Lake’s – Sundown. The arrangement was very fitting and it perfectly set me in the mood to expect a marvelous evening enriched with dance music. Experience and age do not define a DJ’s ability to keep the crowds thrilled; it’s his willingness to want to give them the best music. That is exactly what Shaan did.
Rishabh Joshi took the decks alone as Lost Stories, seeing him for the first time made me realize that I had been missing out on a lot. He spun out tracks that beguiled listeners. I could evidently see his popularity greatly increasing when he played his version of the Swedish House Mafia’s “Antidote”. But my favorite part of his set was Madcon’s “Beggin”, a song that I would not have predicted in an opening set before Tiesto.
If you have a ear for music and truly want to be a good artist, it’s not about the genre, it’s about how you captivate your audience by bringing your style and stimulate their emotions through your choice of music. Lost Stories proved that he knew what it takes to be a great artist.
The silence, before the greatest DJ of all time took the decks, only spoke of the anticipation that ran through all of us who gathered to witness what was going to be one of the best nights of our lives. As soon as the bright lights shone and the intro of “Chasing Summer” was played, everyone gravitated towards the stage, some even forgetting the people they came with.
His set started off with uplifting vocal house tracks and eventually progressed to the Tiesto I started listening to and started loving. Tiesto’s remix of Zedd’s “Clarity” and Passion Pit’s “Carried Away” were a crowd favourite. I looked around and all I saw were people who came together for the music, nothing else mattered. State of the art visuals and lights amplified the music, not only could you hear the music but you could see it. I could see people lose themselves when Tiesto played his older tracks like “Adagio For Strings” and “Lethal Industry”. It took me back to the time I first started listening to Tiesto and appreciating his music.
Tiesto started off his career as an upcoming trance artist, today Tiesto has ventured into other sub genres of electronic music. The set had its fair share of surprises too. What snuck up on us and literally grabbed us by a wave of pleasant surprise was when he broke into Trap with the Carnage Festival Remix of Spaceman and the Delavita Remix of Joyenergizer; And very cleverly too as he started by just blending the popular riff into his previous track, till the bass dropped. No one was expecting that judging by Tiesto’s routes and his chosen parent genre. Immense respect for Tiesto for keeping up with the times and the current music scene.
Overwhelmed is how I describe my experience at Tiesto’s gig in Mumbai. The audience too had an amazing time; some of them clearly in awe of the great legend, and others who had just let lose of all worldly worries, and literally danced the night away. Whatever the case may be, I’m sure each and every person who had attended, had a night that they wouldn’t easily forget. Mumbai has been experiencing many.
Tiesto in Delhi: The final stop
Before the show started we got a chance to talk to the man himself, it was a short conversation but it gave us a good idea of what 2013 might be. When we asked him about “In The Booth” he said, “Yes, I’m working on it. Infact, I’m going for a meeting in New York on Monday (1st April 2013) to discuss Season 2.” We smiled as we soon as we heard Season 2.
After playing amazing sets at Mumbai & Bangalore, Tiesto was all set to perform his final show in this leg of his Sunburn Arena India Tour. The venue for the concert was chosen to be the Unitech Golf Course, Noida – the same place where Sunburn Noida kicked off with Afrojack last year and also where the legendary Swedish House Mafia performed for their “One Last Tour”.
The city was waiting eagerly to witness the Dutch maestro Tiesto for the first time ever and everyone was so excited. The positive response from Bangalore & Mumbai definitely made us twice as anxious. The event kicked off at 4PM with DJ Mash, Kitty Su’s resident DJ controlling the decks and spinning’ some sick tunes as the crowd started flocking in.
Up next in the line up was DJ Khushi, who took the stage around 5PM dropping some techy remixes of popular hits such as of Avicii’s – “I Could Be The One”, Showtek’s – “Cannonball” & “The Code” by W&W. Starting his career as a Bollywood DJ, and having switched with the growing trend of dance music, Khushi left no stone unturned in keeping the crowd going and in our opinion did a superb job of playing a warm up set.
Then at 6PM, DJ Nawed Khan took over and started dropping some grooving tunes as the ravers started filling up the huge venue of Unitech Golf Course. Starting his set with the lovable “So Much Love” by Fedde Le Grand as the sun was going down, Nawed attracted the crowd towards the stage in large numbers and got them pumped up for the big showdown with his set. He finished his set with Hard Rock Sofa’s – Just Cant Stay Away, while DJ Pearl was up there on the stage to play her set before the legend Tiesto was up on the decks. Taking the crowd on a pure progressive house journey, Pearl played a perfect opening set for Tiesto as the crowd started to increase heavily.
As soon as the clock was about to hit 8PM and the announcement was made that Tiesto is ready to take on the stage, the crowd rushed towards the front in huge numbers. Tiesto was finally up on the stage, kicking off his set with his signature opening track “Chasing Summers” but instead of the original, playing the R3hab & Quintino remix. The crowd was screaming and shouting as they witnessed the legend Tiesto get on to the stage, and take over those decks with his AKG headphones on. It was a dream come to true for many fans out there.
The first 30 mins of Tiesto’s set were filled with some amazing hits including his remixes of “Clarity”, “Can’t Stop Me” and “Sweet Nothing”. The crowd was singing and dancing along the tunes, as Tiesto kept dropping one hit after the other. Playing his all time best productions such as Lethal Industry, C’mon & Zero 76, Tiesto gave the crowd some taste of his own music as well.
As his set continued, he previewed some unreleased and exclusive tracks that received first play at Ultra Music Festival, Miami. Playing Alesso’s brand new remix of “If I Lose Myself” and Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike’s unreleased track “Turn It Up”, he mixed up his set brilliantly with progressive and electro tunes.
After playing some more insane hits, Tij’s held the mic and said “Its good to go back in time, Delhi” and thus began our classic – Tiesto journey with his trance masterpiece “Adagio for Strings”. Switching over to the power packed 140 BPM; it was time for some trap music. Taking the crowd by surprise, Tiesto dropped the trap version of “Spaceman” followed with Sander van Doorn’s Joyenergizer mixing it up with the original.
Impeccably switching back to 128 BPM, it was time for the lovable and stomping ‘Maximal Crazy’. Playing the mashup of ‘Every Teardrop is a Waterfall’ vs Swanky Tunes & R3hab Remix of ‘Maximal Crazy’, the crowd went bonkers. The moment he continued it with the original version of ‘Maximal Crazy’, the whole arena stood up and the energy among the crowd was inexplicable. The end of this magical music journey was about to come, but Tiesto didn’t let the crowd settle down. He instantly dropped the crowd pleaser – ‘Epic’ by Sandro Silva & Quintino.
It was about to strike 10PM and there was Tiesto holding the Indian Flag up high on the stage, ready to play his final track for the night – “Pair of Dice” mixing it up with “We’ll Be Coming Back”. At the end, he signed his AKG headphones and threw it away in the crowd for that one lucky fan to grab it. The crowd was tired and completely drained out, yet they chanted out loud as Tiesto went off the stage.
Big thanks to Sunburn (Percept) for bringing the Dutch legend Tiesto to India and putting together an amazing show.