Show Review: Pretty Lights Creates New Colors In Sound At Hammerstein Ballroom

Saturday, Dec 7 2013 in NYC was a holiday treat for diehard Pretty Lights fans who gathered at Hammerstein Ballroom to catch his act. Folks had the opportunity to meet and greet the acclaimed artist of the recent Grammy nominated album, “A Color Map of the Sun” at local music shop, Rough Trade located in Brooklyn.

The producer and DJ, born Derek Vincent Smith, signed LPs and CDs of his most recent masterpiece, as well as other PL merchandise. Smith went on to perform for Pandora’s “Discovery Den” show later that evening at the Hammerstein Ballroom, closing out the night after Tegan & Sara as well as original funk/electronica group, Chromeo.

Pretty Lights’ social media outlets revealed the venue and date along with a link to RSVP for the free three-tiered show, undoubtedly poised to reach myriad PLfaithfuls throughout the NYC/ tri-state area. Smith brought forth an unequivocal energy to greet his fans and instantly laying out the deeply artistic sound emissions exactly as he intended with “A Color Map of the Sun”. The set featured selections from his album, but gave off an old-school “digging in the crates” vibe. Case and point: early on, he blended “Done Wrong” from A Color Map of the Sun, into samples of the vintage, “Gazing At The Glare,” off his 2010 EP “Glowing In The Darkest Night”. Pretty Lights reached into the hip-hop bag of treats, sampling the Notorious BIG over original tracks. Even paying homage to Rappin 4-Tay’s classic record “Playaz Club,” mirroring a simple steel guitar riff that influenced Derek’s monstrous hit “Finally Moving.”

The Grammy nominated album was intended by Smith to be vintage and eclectic, and not by solely sampling and gathering sounds from vintage sources, instead by creating his own vintage, aged and nostalgic sound that any PL fan can recognize. The love that Derek Vincent Smith shows for his music can be seen through the fans, in which he reciprocated back in kind, thanking the crowd for all the love of his music, support of the album. Pretty Lights closed out his set with the smooth-as-glass track “Yellow Bird” from “A Color Map of the Sun,” capping the night off in in perfect harmony.