I had never understood the fervor that English electronic group Above and Beyond inspired — and then I saw them for the first time at Outside Lands last year.
The passion of their fans is pretty hard to unmatch. I’m friends with a kid who has been to almost 100 of their shows, like they’re the Grateful Dead or Phish. The amount of positive energy that came out of their Outside Lands set helped me understand. But after experiencing that, I was curious to see if the energy would be even higher for their own headline show.
When I found out they were playing the Los Angeles Convention Center the week of New Year’s, I knew I had to see them. Walking into that massive venue I wasn’t sure what to expect, and then I walked into the actual auditorium and saw the dinstinct A&E visuals that were playing, as their set had just begun. The crowd was massive, it was one big dance party that avoided the trappings of a Vegas nightclub where you’re packed in like sardines.
The show kicked off their Common Ground tour and it was also their first-ever stop at the Convention Center. They made the most of that experience with a high-energy, extremely positive set that had the crowd dancing nonstop.
I had never been in an EDM crowd where I saw people crying tears of joy until this Above & Beyond show. It was a pretty intense and memorable thing to see — this is something I had only seen at shows of other genres before. This made it crystal clear why Above & Beyond is on that upper echelon of live electronic acts.
Photo courtesy of Rukes.com