My New-Found Appreciation for EDM (Thanks, Resonate Suwannee!)

[Vlad the Inhaler in feature photo by Joe Shover Photography]

My first experiences with EDM came from great late-night silent disco sessions at Bear Creek Music & Arts Festival, AURA Music & Arts Festival, and Purple Hatter’s Ball. Even then, I was more attuned to the deep house and acid jazz aspect of the business rather than what we know as dubstep. There were people playing laptops and DJ rigs, loopers, and others playing live music.

Future Joy – Resonate Suwannee. 📸: memorandum_media

Fast-forward to Suwannee Hulaween which, despite silly comments that “there isn’t enough EDM on the lineup” (I know, only 39 out of 91 this year), there was always plenty on the EDM menu to choose from. There were, for me the music reviewer, two main problems. One, I always endeavor to check out as many bands and artists as possible. That often means I have at most 10 or 15 minutes before I have to move on. Two, lots of the EDM pumping out of the Amphitheater and The Hallows (and late nights at Incendia) were at what I perceived as mind-numbing volume levels, and those venues were packed tighter than sardines. I often couldn’t hear or see or move. That didn’t make for a pleasant listening experience. The EDM presented at Spirit Lake worked much better for my ears.

Mark Farina – Resonate Suwannee. 📸: Joel Shover

Bottom line: I rarely gave many of the those artists the opportunity to impress me, for all those reasons listed.

Enter Resonate Suwannee (our full review of the magnificent weekend is in process). This lovely fest had so many things going for it: only two stages to deal with (the Porch and the Amp), 3 thousand patrons (that’s a guess) rather than 20, all of the EDM sets properly showcased on the Porch stage with great lighting and sound, and alternating sets between the Porch and live bands on the Amp, meaning you could could catch every note of every set (or not).

Dirtwire – Resonate Suwannee

Result: I got to CONCENTRATE on each of the EDM artists. There was dubstep; look, I simply don’t ingest the right stuff for that. I wouldn’t know what to do at Tipper & Friends (my friends will!). There was fabulous house music. There were DJs accompanied by live musicians. And I had a fabulous time! The best part was watching people move to the music — more like a martial arts discipline than a dance. You cannot perceive that in a mob of people. It was a young man named Bronson who got up on several occasions during Desert Dwellers who taught me this as I watched him.

Megan Hamilton – Resonate Suwannee

I will try to figure out how to negotiate the Hulaween situation a bit better this year!

And I don’t know a single soul not ready this very second to buy a ticket to next year’s Resonate Suwannee. Thanks, Resonate, for opening my eyes… and my ears!



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