Just this Friday (March 13th), Colorado had the honor of hosting Dada Life at the 1stBank Center in Broomfield, just outside of Denver. The massive arena is home to SkyLab each September for the last 20 years, not to mention a myriad of other electronic music shows monthly. But it’s safe to say, Olle and Stefan, the men behind the bananas and champagne definitely gave the people of Colorado a night to remember when they sent out thousands of pillows for “the ugliest pillow fight in DadaLand”.
At 8pm the floodgates were opened, and the new citizens of DadaLand were welcomed into the 1stBank center. First to inaugurate the crowd was Decadon, Colorado local, who brought with him die-hard fans from all over the state. Known for his ability to incorporate live instruments into his love for hard hitting dub, Donnie Miller couldn’t have been a better opener for the night. His high energy was reciprocated by much love from all in attendance, the fans were eating up his impressive talents- and he was feeding off of their reaction.
Next to take the stage was Bixel Boys, Los Angeles musical duo and FREE LIFE brand creators. Immediately when the Boys over took the sound tables, my deep house/bass loving self was stoked. Their combination of bass music and techno was unique and set them apart from the usual big room house that we were to see later during Borgeous. FREELIFE, the Bixel Boy’s personal brand of jersey-shirts has been rocked by the likes of Dillon Francis, Anna Lunoe, Cashmere Cat, Mat Zo and many others. Not just a dope t-shirt but a great cause; 100% of proceeds go to hosting a kids camp for kids who’s parents are struggling with cancer. Here's where you can check them out http://www.shopbixel.com/ The Bixel Boys, Rob May & Ian Macpherson are truly using their rising fame as a platform to lift humanity.
Party Favor, AKA Dylan Ragland and growing DJ was the third opener to DadaLand and kept the hype escalating. Also hailing from southern California, this Mad Decent artist has been credited for helping spread the popularity of festival trap across the country and landed him self on a Beatport Top 10 spot. Girls were definitely gettin’ a little twerk-y, and for good reason. Party Favor has a sound reminiscent of Bro Safari and Diplo. Finishing out his set called in Henry Fong, and the crowd could not have roared harder.
Henry Fong has been turning out ear catching original tracks that generate the intense drops that electro-house fans crave. When he dropped the most anticipated track of the night, “Scream”, a collaboration with artist J-Trick, the crowd collectively went insane. The peak in this song is the epitome of what Henry Fong is so famous for and the sound that he strives to recreate. What’s cool about the initial release of “Scream” is that Fong did not intend on hiding his music producing secrets; he release the entire Ableton Live Project file of the song, inviting people to see what makes the magic happen. (https://splice.com/henryfong/henry-fong-j-trick-scream-original-mix) His confidence shines through into his stage personality, it was a pleasure to see him with a huge smile on his face the entire time.
The last opener before Dada Life took command was big room house DJ and Spinnin’ Record’s artist, Borgeous. Immediately upon setting up his equipment, “Tsunami”’s massively recognizable sound started bumping through the venue. Clearly trying to amp up the crowd after the short wait between him and Henry Fong, Borgeous had everyone ready for a tsunami to take over, even though it’s co-creator DVBBS was missing. “Stampede” and “Invinsible” were of course also heard booming through the backstage area I was waiting in. There was no mistaking who was playing, and who was to come next.
Finally at midnight, Dada Life seized the attention of all DadaLand attendees and toyed with our excitement as they played the entry notes for “Everything Is Free”. The wait was over and the excitement of the crowd around me was almost palpable. For the first hour of their set, Olle and Stephan played a series of classics that were cut and manipulated to tailor their high adrenaline. “Cookies With A Smile”, a five year old Dada Life single, was one of the first classics played and had everyone shouting out it’s silly lyrics. Starting this rendition on original remixes, Dada Life turned the drop of “Cookies with a Smile” into something the crowd was not expecting. This continued to be a theme throughout the night with each song getting it’s own signature Colorado twist; thus changing up the rules in DadaLand.
The real shocker of the night was when thousands of fluffy white pillows were tossed into the audience; reaching them back as far as they would go. Holding off until the green light from Olle, almost everyone was clutching onto a pillow eagerly waiting to thrust it in the face of the person next to them. Dada Life had truly thrown the rule book out the window when they exclaimed that this was to be the ugliest of all pillow fights to be had at all DadaLand Compounds. With the exception of the Guinness World’s largest pillow fight thrown by Dada in Chicago last year. To the drop of “Happy Violence”, the entire arena became any little kids dream; a sea of laughter and pillow fighting; truly the most happy type of violence.
After the feathers settled to the ground, the crowd was taken to a whole other level when Stefan hopped up onto the table on stage and started hypnotizing the audience with a giant swinging light bulb. Preparing for their final few songs, the duo had not lost the energy of the crowd at all; something Coloradoan’s are known for is being able to go hard until the sun comes up. Dada Life wrapped up a successful night with some of their most recently successful songs, “Born to Rage”, "This Machine Kills Ravers" and “Freaks Have More Fun”. Although “Rolling Stones T-Shirt” and “You Will Do What We Will Do” were left out of the set, it was refreshing to leave with a taste of their newer music and kept us reeling on what they will put out next.
Written by: Melanie Gordon
Photography by: Emily Carlson
*Note: all of the photos/videos used in this article are property of Bass Feeds the Soul