With Shermonology, Quintino and R3hab
Mansion, Miami Beach
Friday, June 15, 2012
Afrojack is like the USPS. Neither rain nor sleet nor snow can stop him from bringing the heat to his home away from home. Thankfully, that happens to be our very own Mansion nightclub on South Beach.
At 1:30 a.m., he was tweeting that he was finally safe to make his way over from St. Petersburg, where he'd headlined another gig. And by 2 a.m., he was climbing behind the decks to get the packed house totally jacked on dirty Dutch house beats.
When we first got there at about 12:30 a.m., Afrojack protégé Shermanology was already going hard, laying down tons of dirty electro drops. Inside, the dance floor was filled to the brim. The side stairs and second floor were quickly crowding. It must have been one of the busiest nights Mansion has seen in a while.
By about 1:15 a.m., Shermonology was joined on stage for a special tag-team set with fellow Wall Recordings artist Quintino. They kept the place moving, getting people all worked up for the headliner who was, at the time, stuck in the rain in Tampa having played a gig there earlier in the day.
"@shermanology @mcambush @QUINTINOO can u keep the partyers in Mansion updated? Were on our way flying but HEAVY thunderstorm...... Eta 2.00," Afrojack tweeted. And honestly, we started to wonder if he would ever arrive. We barely made it there alive ourselves. But if a hurricane couldn't stop hundreds of partyers from making it out, Afrojack wasn't going to let them down.
Suddenly, after about an hour of hard drops and clever remixes, all the lights and sound in the place shut off. For about a minute, we thought something had gone wrong. But then the countdown began.
"I think it's time to let you know," a voice sang as giant Afrojack heads appeared on the screens. And then there he was, visible in the booth, taking off his grey jacket and digging into the decks. It was kind of an unbelievable turn-around after having just tweeted that he was on his way. Clearly, Afrojack has special feelings for this town.
And following an epic build of an intro, he busted the dance floor open with a gnarly rendition of "Pon De Floor." Trains of sparkler-topped champagne snaked their way through the VIP as the first drop brought on tons of confetti and puffs of faux smoke.
Though the openers had been going ham, the intensity went up a serious level with Afrojack's performance. He did not hold back, going right into some of the dirtiest Dutch house beats we've ever heard. "Are you ready to get jacked up Miami?" MC Ambush asked on the mic. "Make some noise!"
And Afrojack definitely delivered a set full of hits new and old, from his own catalogue and beyond. In the first hour, he mixed a nasty on-the-fly mash-up of "Nasty Time" and Oliver Twizt's take on "Polka Dots" that was mad real. Then he brought back the "Pon De Floor" drums to mix into mega-hit "Hello," cutting out the music here and there to let the crowd sing.
Thirty minutes into the set, he dropped "Take Over Control," though he'd play it once more before finishing up. Girls stood on every possible ledge to get a better look and camera phones came out in all directions to catch the clip. He let the whole song play out before dropping a bit of "Levels" with "D.A.N.C.E."
He kept a surprising amount of control over the huge crowd over the course of his almost two-and-a-half hour set. Whenever it seemed people were starting to aimlessly look around the room, he'd blast faces with a massive drop that demanded everyone's attention. Everyone was in it for the long-haul.
The production value of the night was incredible. So much confetti, so much smoke and crazy lights, and so many champagne showers. He was originally scheduled to play Bayfront Park. And it would have been cool to see what Afrojack could do with a whole amphitheater to himself. But it didn't seem anyone felt like they'd been gipped.
A few times throughout the night, Afrojack climbed up onto the decks and sprayed the place with bubbly, taking time to pour whatever was left into the hungry mouths below him. Also interesting to note, this guy is one hell of a Grey Goose chugger. He just gulps from the bottle like it's water. He might die deaf with cirrhosis of the liver. But damn, he's partying while it lasts.
At about 3:30, he let them have it with a hard remix of "Give Me Everything" as his MC and two other singers climbed onto the decks, each with a bottle of champagne to spray. Of course, he joined them before too long up there, and they went through as many bottles as they could handle. He jumped back down to play Tiesto's "In My Mind."
"We must be having a motherfucking goodtime right now Miami," the MC called. "Make some noise." And the energy didn't drop at all as he came to the close of his set, dropping "Take Over Control" once more, as well as EDM classic "I Remember" and finishing up with Lykke Li's "I Follow" before finally handing control over to R3hab and climbing back on top of the decks. And he just stood there, taking in the insanity of it all, pouring more champagne into open mouths.
Personal Bias: That mix of "Somebody I Used To Know" and the Tommy Trash rework of "Ladi Dadi" was rough as hell. But that's about the only thing I can find to complain about. That and drink prices.
The Crowd: Fancy, rich people with fake body parts and dilated pupils.
Afrojack's Setlist Highlights
-"Pon De Floor"
-"Take Over Control"
-"Day 'N' Night"
"Somebody I Used To Know"
-"Sexy and I Know It"
-"Give Me Everything"
-"In My Mind"
-"Until They Kick Us Out"
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-"Take Over Control"