The Real Definition of ‘Epic’: Above & Beyond
Forget all those times you’ve heard a show carelessly described as “epic”. The overused word is defined as ‘noting or pertaining to a long poetic composition, usually centered upon a hero, in which a series of great achievements or events is narrated in elevated style.’
Above & Beyond. Aptly named “Group Therapy,” the English trance trio’s launch party for Anjunabeats Volume 10 at the Roseland Ballroom this month became a night for the history books.
Devoted concertgoers came out in droves for the sold out show, wearing custom made clothing and carrying signs reading “We are not alone 2nite” and “NYC never forgot about love” – an homage to Above & Beyond’s transcendent theme that brings together the friendliest fan base you will ever encounter at a modern day EDM show.
Deep house opener, Beckwith, set the tone for the night as fans mingled and picked their spot in the crowd, carefully selecting downbeat tracks that progressively layered complicated rhythms over top of each other. Next up was Andrew Bayer. The 25-year-old producer-DJ who had the honor of opening for A&B spent the next 90 minutes raising the BPMs and brought the crowd to party mode, dropping his own popular tracks like “Keep Your Secrets” and other genre favorites including Eric Prydz’s “Miami to Atlanta.”
By the time 12:30 a.m. rolled around, the crowd could not be contained. As Tony McGuinness and Jono Grant took the stage (Paavo Siljamäki produces with the group but does not perform live) hands rose to the sky, coming together to create a sea of hearts on the dance floor. One thing that fans have come to look forward to from every Above & Beyond show is the way the group interacts with the audience. From typing out messages, to pulling fans out of the crowd to drop their most iconic song, the experience with A&B is unique from start to finish, guaranteed.
Fans reveled as Tony and Jono spoke to them from the monitor behind the decks. “The future is in your hands,” they proclaimed at one very emotional point. They also referenced the new Freedom Tower currently under construction in downtown Manhattan. “And by the way, your new tower looks f****** amazing!”
As the confetti cleared from the air, and Norin and Rad stepped up to play to the crowd – ready to rage till 4 a.m. – fans mingled in back and outside, sharing their stories that brought them there that night. Some had just experienced Above & Beyond for the first time while others boasted that they were seeing them for their 7th, 8th, even 15th time. While they exchanged phone numbers and hugs, added each other on Facebook and cheesed out for photos, one sentiment was clear throughout – they were all members of the trance family now, and next time Above & Beyond was playing, they would all be there for another round of Group Therapy.
Check out the latest release “Black Room Boy” (Above & Beyond Club Mix), dropped Feb 25th: