We’re continuing our series of Above & Beyond and this time, our guest writer has been lucky enough to be at multiple Above & Beyond shows including Acoustic I & II apart from ABGT100 held at the iconic Madison Square Garden in New York.
Crazy Sardar, Engineer by day, crazy clubber by night, Jaskaran (Jas as most know him) was introduced to the crazy world of dance music through a David Guetta gig. A relatively newer but intricate part of the Submerge family today, Jas organized parties in his early 20’s, helped manage gigs and festivals that Submerge hosted and now is more famously known by artists, crew and fans as the man behind the stage at Supersonic in Goa each year.
Jas holds no bars on Twitter and it’s not uncommon to see him warring with fellow Twitteratis (all in good spirit guys). We’d still think twice about crossing swords with him. You’re sure to have a blast at a party that Jas is a part of.
Above & Beyond, the name says it all for the position they hold in the Dance Music industry. They aren’t just 3 guys who produce progressive dance music, these 3 guys have left a significant mark in every individual’s musical journey over the years; be it with their album, Sirens of the Sea, or the most recent album, We Are All We Need. Their productions need no introduction and every dance music enthusiast out there relates to their music in some way or the other; in good or bad times.
Having missed out on #ABGT001 in my country of birth; India, I made a promise to myself to try my best to attend all their iconic events. I was lucky enough to be a part of their Acoustic 1 show at the Greek Theatre in LA; shortly after that I managed to Fly to New York for the massive ABGT100 celebrations; and most recently I was at the Acoustic II show in New York as well. How I wish I could make it to the ABGT200 celebrations in Amsterdam…
Rewinding to ABGT100, it was a very chilly evening in New York during October and everyone was out in numbers around Madison Square Garden for this iconic Group Therapy show. The lineup for this iconic event had the biggest Anjuna names ever; Ilan Bluestone, Andrew Bayer, and Mat Zo. When I entered the Garden, it was Mr. Bluestone playing his collaboration with Jerome Isma-ae, Tension. It was at that point that I realized this show was going to be NOTHING like a regular Above & Beyond show. I have been to 6 or 7 Above & Beyond shows, but realized within the first minute at Madison Square Garden that this show was different on so many levels. The energy in the sets from Ilan Bluestone, Andrew Bayer & Mat Zo was different from their regular shows, and they didn’t just come out to play their tunes & head out; they gave it their everything with a big smile plastered on their faces through the entirety of their set.
Now coming to watching Above & Beyond at a Group Therapy show. The one thing that is common to all their shows is the emotional connect with them. The set they play at each performance is usually different, but a performance at a Group Therapy show creates newer & stronger bonds to the songs we love and the people around us. The emotions run high and eventually everyone ends up tearing up at some point in the show. Above & Beyond started their set with their newly released tunes at the time but as the night progressed, they drew out the emotions as they played their classic tunes like ‘Sirens of the Sea’, ‘Sun & Moon’, ‘Satellite’ and ‘Thing called Love’. Maximal feels were triggered with their Oceanlab favorite, ‘Satellite’, which brought the entire crowd to sing in unison and many kissed their loved ones who were by their side.
ABGT100 came to an emotional ending with “Thing called Love” as the Garden lit up with red lights and confetti, and 13000 fans singing the chorus till the last beat. It’s really hard to put into words the emotions one goes through at such an iconic event and I am sure the 2 lucky winners for ABGT200 are going to feel the same rush of emotions as I did at ABGT100.
Big ups to Submerge for giving this opportunity of a lifetime, and thank you for bringing down Above & Beyond to India year after year. Please consider yourself the lucky few as I know its going to be a memory that you will cherish for a lifetime.
Last but not the least; don’t forget about a thing called love.