OWSLA Good Times! tour tore up Toronto
On Friday, Nov. 29 the Hoxton in Toronto hosted its second edition of the OWSLA tour, and due to the success of the show last year at Wrongbar, this year’s event was themed the Good Times! tour. Cleary based on the good music, good people, and good fun.
At 10:00 pm The Hoxton on the corner of Bathurst and Queen West started blasting out some house beats. The tunes were being pumped out of the speakers by Skrillex’s youngest and most promising artists.
First up was internationally-known Brooklyn, N.Y. native David Heartbreak, who is accredited as being an innovative leader in electronic dance music. Heartbreak began his musical career in hip-hop, but his eclectic electronic evolution of sound transposes from his love of traveling and his interest in different cultures.Inspired from listening to all different genres of music from different cultures, you can definitely feel and hear the eclectic worldly tastes of Heartbreak. His songs feature all aspects of Dutch house, future bass, kuduro (a type of music and dance originally developed in Angola in the 1980s,) electro house, and dance. He continuously produces groundbreaking tracks in which he takes calculated risks, adding his own unique blend to anything and everything he puts his hands on.Next up was Blood Diamonds, aka Michael Diamond. Although he lifts some influence from R&B, dubstep and dream pop, his music can truly be marked as essentially his own. The 22-year-old L.A.-based electro pop artist is best known for his imaginative soundscapes and infectious, sun-dipped production, which partially came from his background in classical music and jazz.
After moving to Vancouver to study video game design, he became absorbed in all music electronic and quickly started to compose and play it live. He was quickly recognized and scooped up to be part of Skrillex’s OWSLA label.The torrential trio known as The M Machine took the stage and faded out Diamonds with a nice collaborative track, and then swiftly transitioned into the trio’s classic transcending brand.
The group effortlessly teeters between hard-hitting dance tracks and thoughtful, indie-styled lyrically vocal songs, tying it all together with a distinctly cinematic presentation. The group’s debut EP Metropolis Pt. I was released in April of last year on the OWSLA label. After an extensive run of official remixes for the likes of Bruno Mars, Passion Pit, Datsik, Kill The Noise, and Madeon, The M Machine has returned to original production which they showcased tonight. They played some of their well known tracks off of both Metropolis Pt. I and Pt. II, and had the entire crowd amped up for the final act, Alvin Risk. Alvin Risk, aka Marcio Alvarado, is an American electronic music producer, singer and DJ from Washington, D.C. He has been releasing electronic music since 2008, and has an astounding ability to create a very unique atmosphere in his music.
By this time, the Hoxton was stuffed and boiling hot, and people were practically being pushed out the doorways. If it were any more packed in there, the audience would surely have known firsthand what it’s like to be in a sardine can. The air was hot, sticky, and the stench of body odour touched everyone on the dance floor like the common cold. I was quite surprised to see some beautifully dressed ladies wearing high heels, and prayed for their ankles in the masses. It’s easy to see that Skrillex’s label and its burgeoning artists are growing vastly in popularity with each passing day.Drink in hand, and glow sticks abound, Alvin Risk, very quietly and almost unseen, took to the stage. There was a sudden stampede to the front of house, and a tsunami throng of excited youthful voices calling out his name in a chant, as the cute, nerdy, sweater vest wearing Alvin Risk brought up the lights and opened his set.
If ever a DJ could take you on an auditory escape, it’s Risk. He has a vast array of styles, and does not give a shit about genres. He’s so confident in his work that you can download his new EP Junk Food for free from his website. The night wrapped up seamlessly, and it’s safe to say that this label show has become a staple in Toronto for years to come.