Amsterdam, The Netherlands – Held this past Oct. 16-20, the 24th edition of Amsterdam Dance Event delivered plenty of daily conference events and networking opportunities for electronic-music-industry vets. But the show also allowed plenty of DJ/producer upstarts to satisfy their collective gear lust by visiting the ADE Sound Lab and ADE Tech portions of the show.
Additionally, more than 400,000 fans hit town to see more than 1,000 DJ-driven ADE events in 200 area venues. DJs from all genres – techno, trance, house, trap and more – played events day and night. Here are some highlights from the music and tech sides of ADE:
The Music: On Oct. 19, hitmaking German DJ/producer Claptone headlined his latest version of The Masquerade party. Held at the suburban World Fashion Centre, the masked marvel delivered a wonderfully moving set of deep house, which included plenty of remixes of cuts from his superb Fantast long-player (like Patrice Baumel’s hypnotic take on “La Esperanza”). With hits aplenty, Claptone moved the room with 90 tuneful minutes of rich grooves and warm vibes.
The Masquerade’s undercard was no less impressive. Fellow countryman/groovemaster Purple Disco Machine (aka Tino Piontek) rocked old-school classics like Laid Back’s “White Horse” and gleefully went over the top with The Bee Gees’ “You Should Be Dancing.” The sweaty crowd ate it up – as always, disco never dies. Before him, American house legend Todd Terry left the audience in a lather with juicy cuts like Musique’s “Keep on Jumpin’,” Daft Punk’s “Around the World” and Lil’ Louis’ “French Kiss.” A splendid evening all around.
The previous night at Melkweg, the legendary Leidseplein venue delivered its annual double dose of divergent genres. In the venue’s Rabozaal space, trancemaster Markus Schulz went open-to-close for an enthusiastic, sold-out crowd – a highlight coming in the form of dropping BT’s classic “Flaming June” as BT (aka Brian Transeau) himself stood beside him smiling wide. Meanwhile, in Melkweg’s main building, Dave Clarke and company – DVS1, Luke Slater, Paula Temple, Marcel Engler, etc. – dropped techno bombs for an amped-up audience.
The Tech: The ADE Sound Lab at De Brakke Grond included several tech brands with products for DJs and music-makers. Among other new products, Native Instruments debuted its TRAKTOR KONTROL S3 4-channel DJ mixer and Roland broke out its DJ-707M performance controller. ADE attendees also enjoyed exhibit stands from Ableton, Arturia, Allen & Heath, Akai Professional, Bitwig, Denon DJ, iZotope, Loopmasters, Korg, Moog Music, Novation, PLAYdifferently, Rane DJ, ROLI Splice and TORAIZ.
In its separate demo area, Pioneer DJ presented performances from top-tier jocks like Roger Sanchez and Cassy and rolled out its range of products, including the new DDJ-XP2 controller for rekordbox dj and Serato DJ Pro software.
Also Notable: Audionamix, maker of XTRAX STEMS, won the ADE Tech 2019 Companies 2 Watch competition. Awarded for having “the most innovative idea related to the music industry,” Audionamix software (like XTRAX STEMS 2) is powered by A.I. algorithms and benefits remixers and DJs by automatically separating songs into vocals, drums, bass and remaining music stems.
In addition to the official ADE presentation, independent activations across the city included Gibson’s impressive spread atop the A’DAM Tower. Among other Gibson brands, the company showed its latest KRK studio monitors, like the ROKIT G4 range, which includes 5-, 7-, 8- and 10-inch models, all of which include DSP-driven onboard EQ with visual LCD.
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