Fall weather descended upon New York City for the first official day of the season and really cooled things off, but the unstoppable combo of Jamie xx, Four Tet, and Floating Points brought the heat to Queens for an electric Friday night rave.
When a show starts at 4:30pm on a week day, it's hard to get there on time. I missed opening sets from Omar S and Avalon Emerson early in the afternoon, but made it just in time for Four Tet and Floating Points' joint set that kicked off just as the sun began to set. As soon as the duo took to the stage, massive balloons started to fill the open-air stadium and gave a youthful, joyful element to their set and helped ease in the fun as things packed in and infectious rhythms began to take over the night. Watching the balloons bounce around the stadium was a delightful sight and made it feel like you were living in the cover art of Four Tet's excellent album Everything Ecstatic setting the mood for the night ahead. For two and a half hours, the pair handed off duties to one another, allowing getting their ow respective moments to dazzle the crowd with high-impact techno and old school rave vibes. Four Tet delivered his recent standouts "Only Human" and the 3LW sampling "Looking at Your Pager," which he looped repeatedly throughout the set and each time the crowd erupted with elation. The chopped-up vocals reaching dizzying heights before disintegrating into the beats. Floating Points did a stellar job of bringing in some harder hitting moments and watching him feel the groove from behind the boards helped distill the energy over the crowd while Four Tet specialized in bringing out moody melodies and glitched-out beats. Throbbing pulses of deep house stretched over the crowd as the two fed off one another making their set feel leveled-up to the max. Floating Points ducked our for the last thirty minutes leaving Kieren to his own devices, he then obliterated the beat by infusing jungle with drum and bass to really kick things up a notch. For his final victory lap, he cut the beat to drop an a cappella sampling of Ariana Grande's "Into You" which echoed around the venue before his final act. Slowly but surely he built-up a beat that came into focus as Donna Lewis' '90s epic "I Love You Always Forever" which provided a sweet comedown as the crowd belted out the chorus with pure elation. Following that moment of elongated bliss, Jamie xx finally made his way to the stage an instantly cut into this year's bumping "Do It Again" which quickly got the crowd back in the moment. For the following ninety minutes Jamie made his way through banging techno and killer samples that kept the audience dancing without stop. Interpolating bits of Missy Elliot and Ludacris were early favorites of the set and really got the crowd amped up into a near frenzy (there were several times when people started jumping to the beat on the bleachers which added even more percussion to the already intense jams) and he paid heavy compliments to his bandmate Oliver Sim by playing the remix to his track "GMT." When he dropped the sample of the Stop Making Sense version of the Talking Heads' iconic "Psycho Killer," the place erupted and the night hit its apex moment. "Gosh" was another stellar moment that helped bring things to a close with illustrious melody and deep grooves, but it was his final drop of "Good Times" that sealed the night with a bang. This was the moment everyone had been waiting for and to hear the track live in its entirety was an absolute triumph. Nothing but good times indeed.