Photos by: Peter Nguyen (Empty Planet Productions)
Story by: Justin Porco
October 15. A cool night and the parking lots where the Three Rivers meet were bumping. Music could be heard throughout the lots and bass heads from all over gathered to rave to their favorite DJ. Thousands came to one small stage, Stage AE, for one of the biggest concerts of the year... Bassnectar.
This year’s NVSB Tour featured three amazing artists, Son of Kick, Kill Paris, and headliner Lorin Ashton, who filled Stage AE with beautiful sounds and plenty of bass. It was the latest stop on Bassnectar’s Noise vs Beauty tour, which took its name from his chart-topping album of this year. The name of the tour really does express how his show went in Pittsburgh that night.
Starting off the night was Son of Kick with his heavy bass throbbing through the air of Stage AE. He opened off the night with a “kick” of bass to all the bassheads anxiously waiting for their benevolent benefactor. It truly was a great way to begin the night preparing us for Kill Paris to step up. At the end of SoK’s set list he yelled to the crowd “PITTSBURGH ARE YOU READY FOR KILL PARIS!” Who immediately emerged wielding his electric keyboard guitar filling the air with some of the best future funk I have heard at a concert. Mixing in classic grooves like “Play That Funky Music White Boy” with his hard-hitting bass. The funk was cutting through the air as everyone danced to classics that even our parents enjoyed. Lights fluttered and the mood was being set, all the anticipation was being built more and more for the main event.
Kill Paris ended his set with a bang and everyone prepared themselves for what was about to occur. The crowd was growing by the minute as everyone packed in to see the main event, Bassnectar. The lights dimmed and on the stage all you could see were the two glowing logos emitting from his laptops. Minutes went by and no one appeared, everyone was ready for Bassnectar who was nowhere to be found. Next thing you know Lorin appears ready to rain bass down on all. But before he did, he announced his apologies for being few minutes late due to multiple cancelled flights and landing finally in Pittsburgh on a 3-seater plane twelve minutes before performing. Nonetheless, he was ready to engulf the bassheads with his beauty and noise.
Lights flash, music drops, and seven massive LED monitors project multiple satellites as lights strobe and flash to “Teleport Massive.” The crowd bobbed to the bass as one moving as a whole. It’s been the moment bassheads wanted as everyone was dressed in their rave attire. Face paintings everywhere and lights flashed even from the crowd as glovers entertained onlookers. This is the definition of Noise vs Beauty, the combination of lasers flashing from red to green to blue moving and flashing with the bass. It’s every bassheads dream come true seeing the spectacular light show combined with intense visual LED graphics.
Bassnectar unleashed songs from multiple albums including his newest. One of them was “Loco Ono” and the crowd was going loco. Lasers flashed colors of his new album and the monitors threw out an array of display shifting from vortexs to distorted lines. As the bass built up and lyrics infested ears with the words “turn up” the crowd did exactly that. One of which was next to me as he threw his body around jamming having a great time accidently elbowed me. As a fellow basshead I did not mind it’s a time for everyone to enjoy and accidents happen.
The night went on and the air filled with heat as everyone continued to rage. Bassnectar himself even noted on his twitter showing the family photo just before his encore, - “Kicking this week off right: Pittsburgh packed the building and made the roof rain with sweat, ’twas like a bass head sauna in there – thanks for the energy.” Just after midnight Bassnectar closed out his set with a final bang raging for 15 more minutes. Everyone was ecstatic and which basshead doesn’t enjoy more Bassnectar.
The bass that echoed through Stage AE finally came to an end and it was time for everyone to leave. The crowd filed through the doors and embarked to the parking lot where the party continued impressively; to the point Ashton commented “DEEEEEEEYAMMMM :) Pittsburgh Was so rowdy tonight, drove past that huge parking lot on the way out, y'all were still goin hard in tha paint.” If you have never been to a show at Stage AE, I recommend you visit beautiful Pittsburgh on a night Bassnectar throws down. Guarantee you’ll come back wanting more.
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