The Electric Zoo music festival returned to New York’s Randall’s Island this Labor Day, and it was the biggest one yet, expanding to three days and welcoming 85,000 electronic music fans.
Day 1 was a fantastic warm-up, with one of the world’s top DJs, Tiesto, closing out the night. Other highlights included french electro-house guys Sebastian and his label-owner Busy P on the Red Bull stage, and the usual intensity of MSTRKRFT on the Hilltop Arena stage. Before Tiesto, Tiga and Moby took their own successful turns whipping the main stage into a frenzy.
ALL DAY 1 PHOTOS
Day 2 was jam packed with rising stars like Skrillex, SBTRKT, Dirty South, and more, but also time-tested greats like Carl Craig, Ferry Corsten, and headliners David Guetta. But it was the live version of the Italian DJ-duo Bloody Beetroots, called Death Crew 77, that truly surprised the main-stage crowd with its intense live show. The fans went nuts for this set, which included a live drummer and was replete with physical antics like jumps off the higher level of the stage and guitars held above heads.
ALL DAY 2 PHOTOS
Day 3 was another long day of nonstop music, but our excitement and adrenaline somehow kept us going. Israeli psytrance/electronica band Infected Mushroom was one of the more unexpected surprises, filling their tent with a constantly dancing and jumping crowd. It got pretty hot in there, but it was worth it! Diplo also filled another tent, Hilltop Arena, keeping the crowd engaged by often climbing atop the tall DJ rig and yelling into the mic. That stage brought many of the day’s best acts: Boys Noize, Fake Blood, Jack Beats, and a much anticipated set from Carte Blanche, the collaboration between DJs Mehdi and Riton. (Riton was often found atop the DJ rig himself, with his synth in tow.) Their sometimes-roller-skating dancers were a nice touch.
The day was also made special by a main-stage set from DJ Snoopadelic — yes, Snoop Dogg — who had a fun time playing a huge variety of his own favorite tunes, which ranged from rock to hip hop to electronic styles. Next on the main stage, Chromeo played a solid live set to warm up the crowd as the sun went down. Things increased in intensity as Afrojack took the stage, followed by another one of the festival’s huge names, headliner Armin Van Buuren, who closed out what we’d call a highly successful EZoo 2011.
ALL DAY 3 PHOTOS