DECADENCE 2013 @ THE GUVERNMENT ENTERTAINMENT COMPLEX, TORONTO – MARCH 28, 2013
Reviewed by Gosia Mrugala
March may have gone out like a lion this year, but the arrival of spring is still an event worth celebrating. Toronto’s The Guvernment-Kool Haus complex certainly did its bit to help promote spring fever, hosting a massive all-access event on the eve of the Easter long weekend, headlined by some of the biggest names on the EDM scene. At Kool Haus: Calvin Harris, Nicky Romero, R3hab and Manzone & Strong. At The Guvernment: Cosmic Gate, W&W and Mark Oliver. At Chroma: Flipside, Joee Cons and Greg Gow. And at Acid Lounge: Ovi M.
Running back and forth between the rooms was quite the adventure — each time trying to push my way through a wall of bodies entranced by the relentless pulse of the music. You really do see and feel the love — or “PLUR” — that animates the EDM community at an event like this. I just wish I had a cloning machine so I could be in three places at once, catching the full sets from all of these amazing artists, instead of running around like a chicken without its head.
>> The musical remedies of R3hab were a balm for the soul. I first saw him last summer at Digital Dreams and was impressed by his set there — but at Decadence I was utterly blown away by his performance, his flawless musical selection and, above all, his connection with the audience.
>> Manzone & Strong and Mark Oliver are residents at the Guvernment, and with good reason: they never disappoint, bringing their A game every single time they work the decks.
>> At one point was near the entrance to Chroma, when a mass of bodies suddenly surged toward the Kool Haus, and I found myself swept along with the herd to witness Nicky Romero taking the stage. It was pure pleasure to witness the mastery with which he took control of the dance floor, his energy electrifying the entire complex. Romero’s name is one that gets my pulse pounding any time I see him on an artist lineups.
>> Calvin Harris is an artist I first saw live at WEMF two years ago and was absolutely blown away! So my expectations for his performance at Decadence were high — and baby, did he deliver! His musical selection was golden, and his connection with the crowd awe-inspiring to experience.
>> Cosmic Gate certainly had a pleasing musical selection, but there seemed to be a lack of energy. Somehow they never clicked with the crowd, and I found myself drifting back toward back to Kool Haus during their set.
>> W&W created an animalistic frenzy on the Guvernment’s dance floor. My body escaped conscious control and fell under the spell for the duration. These boys work so well together, and communicate musically with the crowd so perfectly.
>> Chroma wasn’t as packed as the two main rooms, but those who made the effort to check it out were amply rewarded by Toronto’s Flipside. His musical selection set the floor spinning; I couldn’t tear myself away while he controlled the decks. Definitely one of the evening’s unsung heroes.
>> I do have to send out some love to Toronto Rave Community (TRC), which made its presence felt and contributed to the overall positive vibe. I can now proudly say that I received my first piece of kandi at Decadence, courtesy of a nice TRC gent.
All in all, Decadence 2013 was an rousing success. The crowd was crazy, and the energy was palpable in every corner of the complex. Every year, Decadence seems to improve. If you haven’t yet made it to one of these annual gatherings, then be assured: you are missing out. Personally, I’m already looking forward to Decadence 2014!
SOME MORE PICS FROM DECADENCE 2013:
Gosia Mrugala is a Toronto-based blogger and reviewer. You can read her blog HERE, and follow her on Twitter HERE.