So Get Up Miami with Cosmic Gate, BT, Jaytech & More March 26th, 2014
Prior to Cosmic Gate’s event on 26 March, I had never actually stepped foot in Set Nightclub in South Beach. After a few inquiries here and there and a short google search, I had what I though, was a fairly accurate idea of what to expect. Bottles, models and very little dancing room. While a lot of people shudder at the thought of such a space, I generally do not. I like the grown up atmosphere and the ability to dress up and not look my age. (No tutu? Hi, grandma!!) Additionally, the location of this venue- right on Lincoln Mall road, made me a happy camper.
Then I walked into the club. My pretty little mental picture was shattered into a million and three pieces and I’m pretty sure my eardrum was as well. (NOTE: Kids, do not do as I do, rather do as I say- wear ear plugs!) After what was possibly the quickest and easiest entry ever, I found my way into this mecca of nightclub beauty. Upon entry some of the things I first noticed: the temperature was perfect, the entrance was not at all crowded (read: not overwhelming, actually inviting), the sound- even at the front door- was impeccable and the crowd was huge! I immediately started mentally marking off my prior errors in judgment. I noticed that there was a very large dance floor- of course it was crowded, but I still found the ability to sneak in there. While there was a very large VIP area for seated bottle patrons, it was not at all abrasive. It was toward the back (so you actually walked to it first, and past it to get to the dance floor). Interestingly enough, the VIP area was a key factor in the overall appeal to the venue itself. The couches lines in a way to form a circle, and gave the dancers space to stand above the crowd, and the dancers were, in fact, another big plus to this venue. Dressed beautifully, and really on point with the music; one would think they choreographed themselves to the actual sets this night.
As I made my way deeper into the venue I was happy to see that my desire to slowly acclimate to the large crowd, was in no way hindered by bouncers. I found that the most comfortable place to stand for a bit, was actually right next to the VIP area. Most venues will quickly man handle you away, in turn making you feel about 2 inches tall and, I would think, is the main reason many people cringe at the thought of a VIP/Bottles venue. Not here, I was never bothered or stared at, they seemed to truly understand I was human and had no intentions on running like a maniac into their beautiful oasis. I did, however, enjoy watching those dancers at this close angle. The lighting working in time with them and the music, was almost mesmerizing at points.
BT on stage has been something I’ve waited years to experience. The fact that I would finally get to do so, in Miami, and at this fabulous venue, only made life that much better. Sadly I missed a big portion of his set, but managed to make it in time to enjoy a good enough portion to re-solidify the fact that this man is a trance genius for good reason. His set had some of the best melodies and driving bass lines of the night. I spent the entire time with a big smile and many thoughts of those who were missing this. Mainly in a taunting “na-nana-na-na” kind of way; hey, we all make our own choices right? I knew from the moment I got there that this whole experience was pure bragging rights.
I thought, to myself, this alone is epic enough to go running to all my friends and tell them they certainly missed one of the best nights of MMW 2014. I was pretty proud of my choice, and was pretty confident I had now seen it all; until the CO2 came. I had yet to experience CO2 blasts of this magnitude. Humorously enough, right before they introduced themselves to my world, I had found a friend and was chatting about my new found love of this venue. As I was speaking, a loud and cold burst of “smoke” came down upon us so thick and loud that I literally lost my breath and every muscle in my body tensed to the point of immediate petrification. I quickly adjusted to this common occurrence, and realized it was just some amazing CO2, and patiently waited for it to be over. Generally, it is just seconds until the club is back to normal and everyone can commence their previous acts with a big grin. This time, however, it didn’t stop. I was in awe, and took out my phone in an attempt to actually time the CO2 blast. Clearly I had missed a large chunk of time, but at the end I was able to estimate that monumental CO2 blast that I experienced was over 2 full minutes long. There truly aren’t words for this, and I hope everyone can someday come to Set and work their butts off on the dance floor and have a hit of CO2 like that themselves.
It was at this point that I realized I needed to be dancing, if not for anything at all but for the (hopefully) forthcoming second CO2 encounter. I made my way into the crowd and found a perfect spot to enjoy the music. Cosmic Gate was on now, and I hear nothing but full on trance and even had the chance to hear some classics from the duo. A lot of my friends were skeptical of the set, and we all weren’t 100% sure on what to expect. I’m so happy I made it out for them, because it was full on over the top true Cosmic Gate. Hearing This Moment and Exploration of Space along with other key CG tunes, always makes me one of the happiest girls on earth. After what seemed to be quite a long set from Nic and Bossi (sorry, I didn’t actually keep time, after the CO2 incident, my phone stayed in my pocket!), we were blessed with Jerome Isma-Ae. Isma-Ae threw down some serious trance, as well as worked in a progressive vibe for us.
I won’t lie, I definitely heard some of this “EDM” or “Electronic” sound that some of you are oh so scared of. But I didn’t hate one second of it. Maybe it was because it was married to some of trance’s best ever classic tunes, or maybe it was because the track placement was so impeccable. Whatever the true reasoning for the appeal, I will not fight it. I’m open to so many sounds, and I look forward to more from Cosmic Gate as well as from Jerome Isma-Ae and Jaytech and BT. I wish I had the chance to hear more of Audien set, and since I did not get to hear it, I do plan on committing to a future even with him on the roster. I have no doubt in my mind, that he was fabulous. In fact, most people were raving about his set.
I definitely left this event in awe. I spent the rest of my Miami visit bragging to people about the night. I found myself on many occasions asking people “Have you ever been to SET?”, and following it up with “It’s my new favorite!”. Of all the things I left Miami with, a new appreciation and love for this venue and for Cosmic Gate, was certainly one of them.
A very big thank you to the staff and everyone involved in making this night so unforgettable. And for each artist for the fabulous music, and of course, to the staff at the door for making what is most certainly a tedious and hard job seem simple as pie. A big round of applause to everyone involved in this evening. I will be back, and this time, with even more people.
Review by Samantha Scroxton
This post originally appeared on Electronic Nightlife, now a part of beatcue.