IMPRESSIONS Dixon @ Electric Zoo presents Awakenings

The annual Electric Zoo festival, provides a 400+ acre playground for electronic music enthusiasts and their imaginations. Whether by boat or bridge, festival-goers flock the island to express themselves through wardrobe, manners, dance steps and choice(s) of tent. The main stage, an enormous venomous infastructure, characterizes the event, easily discerned by the naked eye up to thousands of feet above ground; and from the outer rims of the East River. The entire island vibrates, how deep into other boroghs we cannot tell: five clusters of wild clamoring, rowdy crowds full of fervor, sometimes sounds collide, there are no boundaries between stages; and every participant has allowed themselves to stepped outside of theirs, some more than others.

On the third and last day, all stages present their Sunday best, clad in color, lights, striving for visual orgasms to accompany music. The least aspiring of them all, the Awakenings tent is where we find Innervisions head honcho, Dixon, fresh from Burning Man, one of five headliners closing the festival before he exits the country. Well, to Toronto that is. After a hormone-inducing number by Mr. Pure energy, Henrik Schwarz, Dixon opens up with Depeche Mode‘s ‘Cover Me’. A rather mellow transition into three hours of mind-muddling, emotional see-saw. Less crowded than most tents in the island, party-goers are observed exiting or polygamously checking in and out. But in front center are groups of steadfast believers, an eclectic mix of techno lovers dressed in black, some burner house free spirits; overzealous tourists; typical Bronx locals (yes) interchanging their shuffles, head banging, Solomun hand mambo-jambo and some meat-on-meat grinding. Many eyes are closed, some blood shot, sensations flooded. And on spot light, is a tall pale man, almost lanky, head swaying in a not-so-graceful motion; spewing fires, talking love, playing music that transcend genres and time.

Right before the green laser beam and holograms from Eric Prydz invaded the tent; the red lights that defined the Awakenings tent began to temper. Dixon plays DJ Hell‘s ‘Car Car Car‘. Behind a young man banging his head way too close to the metal rail, and beside a young woman, with eyes closed body convulsing in tiny palpitations, is a man in all black, wearing an elephant cover up, a teal shoulder bag yelling ‘You are a fucking God’. A few minutes before conclusion, Prydz’ light show takes full-take over. But the believers have already surrendered, lost in the moment, entrapped in Berkhan’s full mental possesion. (Marie J Floro)