Basement Jaxx, MSTRKRFT & DJs bring their best to Congress Theater

I arrived at the venue just time for Basement Jaxx, but the show had been kicking since 7pm with a variety of local DJs performing before the three bigger acts beginning with Modeskeletor at 10pm. Upon entering Congress Theater I got assaulted by what some would call “sick beats.” The dance room looked like my dream ‘90s rave, except that there was a lot of beer instead of ecstasy (as far as I know). It seemed like everyone was there, and regardless of whether you were wearing Baby Phat, flannel, tie-dye, or American Eagle, you were dancing. I even saw kids doing tectonic on three separate occasions.
Basement Jaxx filled the stage with the two DJs and a powerful female vocalist who even when not singing, pumped up the audience without distracting from the music. These DJs constantly gave you something to dance to, and at least once every five minutes there would be an unreal roar from the crowd as they showed their appreciation or recognized a particularly juicy piece of music. Such a moment was when they went into a rendition of “Bohemian Rhapsody,” giving us the begging build-up and letting it sit awhile before launching into the typically head-banging section of the song. I don’t know if I was really alive before I heard “Bohemian Rhapsody” sung to me by a modern, electro-fied Aretha Franklin.
Following a short intermission, MSTRKRFT was set to hit the stage. The crowd thinned out a bit at this point, and somewhat understandably, since some of the people there must have been dancing for four and a half hours already. But really, I feel sorry for all those people. They missed what was probably the best DJ set I’ve ever witnessed. Once again, two DJs took their spots behind the throne of sound equipment and began to play. They remixed Daft Punk and Justice and played hits like “Heartbreaker” and “Bounce.” The strongest points of the set were the beginning and the end, which were simply unbelievable fun. With a lot of people left for home, there was room for all out dance fairly close to the front, where the atmosphere and energy coming from the crowd as well as the performers was electric. The DJs were rocking out full force between taking drags off cigarettes and shaking around incredibly shiny hair and formidable mustaches. I was dancing so hard my feet literally left the ground. And suddenly a mix of Daft Punk’s “Aerodynamic” ended and the music stopped. I looked up and the DJs were gone — it was over.
The cost of the show was $25 ahead of time and $35 at the door. I originally thought was a little much, but it was completely worth it for what I got in return. I came into the show in a sulky mood but left healed and totally invigorated.

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