12th Planet & Skrillex
Minutes after Zeds Dead finished their set, 12th Planet jumped on the decks and surprised the UMF Brasil stage’s crowd by doing an impromptu hour back-to-back set with Skrillex. After watching Skrillex blast off in front of 20,000+ fans the night before, we knew we were in for another ride.”Breakin’ A Sweat” was chosen to again to break in the already hyped fans and from that point on there was so much bass I expected the tent to collapse at any given time. The UMF Brasil tent had been crowded all weekend but when these two took over, masses of people filed in. After watching Skrillex have a killer set the night before, we weren’t sure it could be beat but the chemistry these have on stage blew our minds. Even with a minor glitch in the middle of their set, they still dropped 20+ tracks. We’ve seen Skrillex more than a handful of times and this ranks up there as one of our favorite performances.
Our coverage of the 2012 Ultra Music Festival continues after the jump!
Flux Pavilion & Doctor P
With some time to spare before heading over to Carl Cox right next door, we caught the first 25 minutes of Flux and Doctor P going back-to-back. The UK-bred masters of dubstep kept the crowd going strong with builds and drops that gave me my first sweat-saturated shirt of the day.
A short stroll away was the Carl Cox Cocoon stage. A covered installment more similar to an airplane hanger than a stage in a park, the cocoon’s ceiling was covered in lights and CO2 jets that made for one of the most sensory-stimulating experiences of the weekend. Carl Cox needs no introduction, he’s been producing music since the for over 3 decades. His stage presence is untouchable and there aren’t too many other musicians that can take control of the crowd the way he does. The first 30-minutes of his set was engaging and seeing a legend perform on his own dedicated stage is an experience. We’re looking forward to Spring Awakening this summer in Chicago will co-headline under Skrillex and Afrojack.
After watching Nathan Cook, better known as Fatboy Slim, have one of the best performance at Northcoast Music Festival last summer, we made the decision to leave Carl Cox early to make it to the main stage in order catch Fatboy Slim’s entire set. It was a difficult decision but Fatboy Slim had a unbeatable performance that still lingers in the back of mind. If you’ve never been to a Fatboy Slim show, the first thing you have to understand is the music is only 1/2 the show. Fatboy Slim puts in almost as much time in his visual presentation as the music itself, creating nothing less than a mindfuck. He was introduced as both the “First Amendment” and the “fourth Beatle” among other things and began teasing us with snippets up “Praise You.” From there, Slim had gained control of the crowd and leaped into Daft Punk’s “Put Your Hands Up in the Air” to Basement Jaxx’s “Where’s Your Head At.” What came next can be described by others as the low point of his set, dropping “I’m in Miami, Bitch” by LMFAO and as much as we’re all over this song, if we were ever into it in the first place, I didn’t mind hearing Slim chop it up. Up next was Tupac’s “California Love” which came unexpectedly before playing a video of Etta James with Avicii’s “Levels.” From that point on, we danced our asses off while Slim entertained the Main Stage by throwing out giant balloons sporting his trademark (happy face and crossbones), CO2 bursts, and enough confetti to cover a small island. To wrap up an almost perfect set, Slim played “Sunset (Bird Of Prey)” before going to “Praise You.” Hands down, one of my favorite performances of Ultra and 2012 to date.
It was almost unfair for anyone to even follow Fatboy Slim’s set but we knew if any artists could do it, Justice had a shot. We’ve all been listening to them for years and to finally have an opportunity to catch them live was truly amazing but I’ll admit, they did not live up to expectations.
There was gossip from the start of Saturday that Avicii would be joined by a “special guest”. As the day went on, that “special guest” appeared to be Madonna. About 5-10 minutes before Avicii took the stage, a short video began playing discussing the success of EDM in the U.S. thanks to artists like Madonna. Shortly after the video concluded, Madonna herself took the stage and announced she was excited to introduce Avicii and be at Ultra 2012 before asking the audience if they’d “seen Molly.” After this huge introduction, we expected a full on performance from these two but quickly decided Madonna was there to do nothing more than dance around the booth and waive to crowd. Avicii opened up with his remix of “Girls Gone Wild,” but from that point on went on to play through his discography. It was my first time seeing him perform live and while I did enjoy the performance, I expected more from a headlining gig at Ultra.
Photography by: Andre Velez