Dominating various San Francisco venues, from the Independent and the Regency Ballroom, Skrillex sold out the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium Saturday night. Crowds 18 and over waited in huge lines outside in the rain to get inside the venue. The show started with openers Viceroy, Tokimonsta and Alvin Risk. Alvin Risk had a great set and was one of my favorites for the night. A$AP Rocky performed before Skrillex took the stage. Definitely not my favorite, although the crowd danced and loved the set. His covers of Too Short's "Blow the Whistle" and E-40's "Tell Me When to Go" got the crowd dancing. A$AP Rocky did address the crowd on his thoughts of racism, exclaiming that the color of your skin doesn't affect who you are.
Speaking of the crowd, majority of the audience was very young and scantily dressed. College kids abound, and I was glad to see Kandy Kids are still alive. Not too much of an older crowd.
Skrillex's performance started with a five minute countdown, music steadily rising in anticipation to the final seconds to his arrival to the stage. Images of San Francisco landscapes and buildings hyped the crowd during the countdown. Skrillex performed all his hits and new music: "Bangarang", "First of the Year (Equinox)", remixes of Nero's "Promises", Janet Jackson's "We Go Deep", Missy Elliot's "Work It", and Benny Benassi's "Cinema". The lasers and visuals of robots running, monsters and aliens added to the delirious music. If you suffer from epilepsy, you can never see a Skrillex show. Ever. The visuals alone were crazy enough and tied with the music is one hell of an experience.
Watching Skrillex perform is like watching a master paint a masterpiece. He's incredibly talented at what he does. His music is definitely music of the future. Not everyone will get it or understand it. I'd describe his music as robot music while drinking Redbull on speed. His dubstep is definitely the heavy metal of electronic music. The music constantly climaxes and rarely has a slow moment. The only other time I heard anything so loud was at a Backstreet Boys concert back in the 90s when hundreds of screaming girls wailed for two hours straight. Please, don't think of doing the math there, I'm definitely older than 18. Skrillex's music had so much bass, your whole body vibrated. Skrillex frequently jumped on top of his DJ platform to dance, jump and sing joining in on the party. Exclaiming his love for San Francisco, he frequently called to the crowd to, "raise your hands up". His set lasted for an hour and a half, and it felt long and short at the same time. He ended with Niki & the Dove's "DJ Ease my Mind" and came back with an encore performing with A$AP Rocky on the stage.
After some of the songs, I felt blown away, as if dazed and now I can say I survived a Skrillex concert. I think Skrillex shined at the Bill Graham and larger venues and festivals are the best places to see him live. It's a bit much to see him for an hour and a half, so I think a festival setting is the best way to see him alongside other electronic acts. After being bombarded with beats, wobbles and bass, when the music stops, the abrupt end of music leaves you wanting more. Skrillex is definitely a master of his generation and genre and we're just here to witness it.
If you want to catch Skrillex's Takeovers 2014 tour, his next stops are Brooklyn, Amsterdam and Barcelona. For more info, click here.
Did you see Skrillex during his Takeovers 2014 stay in San Francisco? What was your experience? Comment below.