Zeds Dead with Unlike Pluto and Ghastly
October 3rd, 2016 at House of Blues
By: Lauren Kim
Upon entering the House of Blues on October 3rd, I was greeted by a storm of lights and heavy bass. While initially unsure what to expect from a Monday night show, I was pleasantly surprised by the EDM crowd who piled into the venue in multicolored outfits, desperate to relieve themselves of their weekday woes. Unlike Pluto got the audience hyped by playing remixes of other coveted tracks, like Diplo’s “Revolution.” I was impressed with his original track “Waiting For You.” “Waiting for You,” features Joanna Jone’s sultry vocal track and samples to create a sort of call and response song. During the chorus, the vocals quiet down to create space for Zeds Dead and vice versa during the verses. Unlike Pluto was careful not to overwhelm the track with too much saxophone or jazzy percussion sounds, balancing their sound with Jone’s strong vocals excellently.
Next up was Ghastly, whose music unfortunately made me feel like I was having a panic attack. The music was aggressive and I couldn’t recognize any consistency within his setlist. He showed no original talent – his music sounded no different from other starter EDM Soundcloud tracks I’ve heard. His few original tracks all used the same sound samples, and I could hardly tell them apart. The drops didn’t have any satisfaction for the amount of buildup they had, and I could tell the audience had trouble dancing to his beats. He also had remixes that were based off old and outdated songs everyone’s heard way too many times, like Black Eyed Peas’ “Rock that Body.” I was particularly glad for my earplugs when he began to scream nonsense into the microphone.
I was waiting in utmost anticipation for Zeds Dead, and as soon as the duo came on the audience lit up. One thing is certain, the pair of DJs know how to put on a show and floored me with their elaborate visuals, the synchronized lights, and visual backdrop keeping me in awe. They opened with their track “Lost You,” which features Twin Shadow and D’Angelo Lacy off their EP, Somewhere Else. The track translated excellently live, even without Twin Shadow and D’Angelo Lacy the vocals and every intricate sound came through, showcasing Zeds Dead’s intimate knowledge of each of their tracks. They played one banger after another, refusing to allow a single moment for the audience to grow uninterested or anything less than hype. After “You Know,” and “Collapse,” Zeds Dead said thanks and goodnight and left the stage. “You Know,” evoked the biggest sing along from the crowd. They engaged the crowd by telling us to hold Z’s in the air with our hands. The insatiable crowd cheered until Zeds Dead returned and sang the hit that put them on everyone’s EDM radar, “Eyes on Fire”. The splendid vocals of Blue Foundation paired with Zed Dead’s captivating bassline had people singing long after the pair finally left the stage. Waiting outside of the House of Blues for my uber to arrive, I could hear gaggles of fans singing, slightly off key, as they ventured into the night under the spell of Zeds Dead.
ZEDS DEAD By Lauren Kim