Showtek @ Hordern Pavilion, Sydney (19/05/2012)

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With the recent EDM boom, we’ve seen a huge growth in festival sizes and the amount of club gigs. Unfortunately, there has been one noticeable casualty: raves have become an endangered species in the Sydney EDM ecosystem. But over the weekend, hard dance heavyweights and brothers Sjoerd and Wouter Janssen, AKA Showtek brought it back for the party lovers at a sold out Hordern Pavilion show.

The night was not a typical hardstyle event, with Showtek broadening their productions since their last visit with the development of their own brand of hard prog-house. This diversification meant that a variety of genres from house, trance and hardstyle were being dropped by the DJs – which was an all-Aussie line-up besides the headliners.

The warm up DJs for the evening were playing anything but warm-up music, given the green light to unleash the best that they had to offer and the crowd was very receptive. The stand out from the opening acts was the Hard Dance Alliance who played a set that incorporated hardstyle with 140 BPM electro house. They were followed by trance heavyweight MaRLo, who played a half hour set before Showtek. Unfortunately however, this created a lull between HDA’s energy packed set and the storm that Showtek were about to unleash.

The time quickly reached 2am and Showtek were set to hit the stage. After an Swedish House Mafia-like intro that echoed the message “Are You Part of a System?”, the brothers came on stage and Duro started the first Showtek chant of the evening. The first half hour of the set was banging prog-house with a soft hardstyle bassline, however the crowd was not very receptive to the style. Once Freak! was dropped the crowd turned it up a gear, helped along by a light set up which enveloped the whole dance floor and a sound setup which made the floor tremble at moments.

Walt Janssen mixed the set without missing a beat, while Duro controlled the crowd with the microphone. The set from there on was typical Showtek with their tracks making up a bulk of the track list. Some of the non-Showtek tracks that got played were Tear U Down by Audiofreq, Gimmi Love by Noisecontrollers and the Headhunterz remix of Her Voice which made the crowd extra fervent.

But the tracks that really made the 5000 ravers ecstatic were the tracks from APIDW, their remix of Levels and their anthem FTS, which had the crowd singing at the top of their lungs. The two hours flew by and Showtek received a mighty cheer from the crowd that finally got their first proper Showtek fix in over 2 years.

But the night was not over, with Code Black, one of Australia’s finest hardstyle exports taking the decks, he began his set with Headhunterz remix of Spaceman – a track which made many punters who were going outside for a breather turn back.

As the night continued the crowd slowly began to thin out, with many trying to take in the rest of the event from the packed stands. Showtek demonstrated that the ravers are still going hard in Sydney and rave culture is still alive and well, even with a line-up that was made up of mostly Aussies.