The Shrine Auditorium & Expo Hall in Los Angeles definitely lived up to their reputation two weeks ago (Feb. 16) when Goldenvoice, a high end music festivals/concerts promotion company, teamed up with LED (aka My Life Everyday) Presents to hold the debut of LED’s newest event, titled with the captivating name “Finger Lickin,’” which successfully resulted in a sold out show. Event goers that were still waiting in line outside the venue were dying to get inside because you could already feel the bass pulsating from the inside of the Shrine Expo extending to the outside sidewalk where they were patiently awaiting entry. The headlining DJs, Showtek (Sjoerd Janssen and Wouter Janssen) and Chuckie (Clyde Sergio Narain), of this event were already luring in EDM fans by their predominant names declared on the official lineup. However, many people sparked an interest in who else was on the lineup because of the fact that LED, especially with an alliance like Goldenvoice, does not mess around when they select a lineup for a big event that features numerous DJs. Go hard or go home appears to be the main method of these event-planning companies. There were three opening DJs for the event, Ummet Ozcan, Pegboard Nerds, and TJR, that all have a grasp of the foundations of electronic dance music, but also are artists that produce what inspires them. Therefore, we heard a lot of party music, as in a long build up to reach some heavy beat drops, mainstream songs, and tracks with lyrics that people can sing to, but all the opening DJs and both headliners gave the crowd a taste of what their creative selves bring to the stage. And that is what makes a great music event.
Ummet Ozcan was the first set of the night and he definitely started the party off right in playing a variety of tracks that he knew everyone would be able to get down to. Ozcan dropped “Revolution,” an electro house track that he collaborated with Nervo and R3hab to produce, which was a huge banger within the narrow Shrine Expo.
Pegboard Nerds (Michael Parsberg and Alexander Odden) were the second opening set of Finger Lickin.’ The crowd went wild when they heard Pegboard Nerds’ remix of “Alive” by Krewella. The familiarity of this song amongst anyone that attends music festivals or listens to music knows this original mix like the back of their hand and the remix is just another aspect of the song and to be able to experience the track differently.
Pegboard Nerds implemented more of a diversity of genres in their set. They transitioned a lot in between dubstep, trap, electro, house, and anything you could probably find in between. It seemed like switching up their sound more frequently was a little too extravagant. However, it eventually would be appreciated by the people who have more of a preference for dubstep or trap because not much of it was heard within the remaining sets from fellow DJs in the lineup.
The third opening DJ was TJR (TJ Rozdilsky), a signed LED DJ, who we can always count on to bring the booty bass, bouncy electro, and funky house. When he began his set he made certain that his original track, “Ode to Oi,” became a chant for the crowd throughout the entire venue. TJR knew that that would get the crowd revved up with some positive vibes and enthusiasm. He also did not fail to play “What’s Up Suckaz,” which was a huge hit and previously reached number one on Beatport. A more unique feature to TJR’s set compared to his fellow EDM producing associates is that he plays a great deal of Melbourne house tracks, such as “Ah Yeah” by Will Sparks and “Yee” by Deorro, which has that bouncy house sound that kept the crowd literally bouncing off the walls. TJR cannot be missed with that bald head of his and his big smile that both contribute to the environment of his upbeat music. The three opening DJs had done the trick and got everyone super psyched for Showtek.
The Dutch duo started off their introduction on the microphone and going up and down from the upper part of the stage where the DJ equipment was and moving down below to the lower stage, which caused extreme excitement when either of them got closer to the audience. The LED lights and lazers were being perfected with the way they would magnify out into the crowd and when Showtek began their set with their original track, “We Like to Party,” smoke machines went off causing an astonishing reaction from the crowd. Extremely big LCD screens were put up on the walls of the stage that was built and they showed artistic and abstract images or videos on the screens. The visual effects were an insane show itself, but excelling in insanity was with the combination of music and visual effects, and they continued throughout Chuckie’s set as well.
The dirty Dutch himself, DJ Chuckie, was the last to perform and did not hesitate to end the show with a bang. Chuckie produced some heavy bass, dirty, grimy beats, and mixed some very popular tracks that everyone could end their night successfully to and end at a remarkable conclusion. You could tell that his energy and spirit were in the perfect state of mind by his looks of determination and positive self-expressions. He is known for his Dutch house sound, which was perfect for the debut of the Finger Lickin’ event. LED needed headliners that would bring something that would make the crowd cringe in a good way followed by a complete indulgence in moving to the sounds produced, which Chuckie was an immaculately flawless candidate for.
Photos by: Oliver Walker