Over the last three years, Bass Camp Festival has become Lake Tahoe’s top tier electronic dance music festival. Since it began in 2013, the festival has moved venues three times and has had three extremely stacked lineups. This year’s lineup featured Zeds Dead, Kill the Noise, Savoy, and UZ, along with many more artists who all played on three separate stages. The atmosphere was electric inside the festival all day long. I don’t think I have ever been to a festival that had more colorfully and brightly dressed attendees in my life! Everyone I met was joyous and in a great mood, and the people I didn’t meet all seemed to be having a great time as well. This year’s Bass Camp Fest took place in South Lake Tahoe’s Hard Rock Hotel and Casino. The scenery surrounding the venue was like something out of a movie; towering pine trees, a baby blue sky with beautiful fluffy white clouds, and enormous mountains were all around. The festival offered it’s attendees not only live music, but also live artwork as well as an enormous canvas for anyone to paint on. By the end of the night the canvas was filled with all sorts of different paintings, symbols, and words that combined to create one giant piece of artwork showing the true meaning of art; to bring people together in a blissful, happy gathering. There was only one flaw to the festival in my eyes, and that was that there was no grass. In the past two years, “campers” as they are called, were able to lounge around in nice grassy areas which covered the entire festival grounds, but unfortunately this year that was not an option. Aside from this issue, the overall experience of the festival was absolutely incredible and there’s no doubt in my mind that I will be returning next year for a fourth trip. Now I’m going to give you a little taste of my three favorite acts from the festival.
UZ is one of EDM’s premier trap artists and has been rocking crowds for half a decade now. UZ has a signature imagine, wearing a gold mask and a black hoodie at every performance he does. The masked man who chooses to keep his identity a secret is considered by many to be the top dog of the trap world, and for good reason too. His set at Bass Camp was pretty great, considering his time slot of 5:25 to 6:25 pm on the main stage. The crowd was extra rowdy at this point in the day due to a combination of excitement, heat, and the bass blasting melodies pulsating out of the festival’s PK Sound stereo system. During his set, about five or six different mosh pits opened up at various times which got the crowd even more riled up. The most memorable part of his set for me came about half way through when he dropped “BINGBONG” by NYMZ. The reaction of everyone surrounding me was absolutely electrifying and I felt like it really set the mood for the rest of the night.
Kill the Noise
As the second headliner and an EDM legend, campers (myself included) had a lot of high expectations for Kill the Noise going into his set, and yet he still managed to blow them out of the water. Jake Stanczak, the man who produces under the alias Kill the Noise, is no new comer to EDM stardom. He first began performing back in 2003 and has gained an enormous following since then. Kill the Noise is one of dubstep’s final shining stars, and continues to produce bass heavy music in other genres as well including drum and bass and electro house. His performance was from 7:45 to 8:45pm and it was magnificent. The sun was setting towards the end of his set and it created a blissful atmosphere which aided in making his performance feel that much better. My favorite part of his set was when he played the Rudebrat remix of RL Grime and What So Not’s track “Tell Me” towards the end of his set. The heavy metal take on the 2014 trap anthem shot a jolt of energy through the audience that could be visibly seen by the overall increase in movement. Another highlight for me was when he played his newest track “Louder”; a collaboration with Tommy Trash. The song’s unique and twisted distortion and stomping baseline has a distinct Feed Me feel to it and it had the crowd jumping all around. Overall I think that the Kill the Noise set was my favorite for the entire festival.
Zeds Dead, baby! The Canadian electronic dance music duo comprised of Dylan Mamid, or DC, and Zach Rapp-Rovan, or Hooks got their name from the Quentin Tarantino cult classic movie “Pulp Fiction”. Their style of music ranges all over the board, from their traditional dubstep and drum and bass sound to their newer tracks in which they have started to explore the ultra popular deep house. The group inherited an enormously excited crowd from Kill the Noise, and knew exactly how to deal with them. They started off their set with their newest track titled “Flies”, a collaboration with trap up and comers LOUDPVCK. The song has equal parts of LOUDPVCK’s trap influences and Zeds Dead’s signature dubstep sound which combined to start their set off just right. The day of the festival was coincidentally Hooks’ birthday, and halfway through the set Kill the Noise came back out on stage to lead the entire audience in singing happy birthday for him. The most memorable part of their set was when they played their remix of Marina and the Diamonds track titled “Lies”. I was standing directly behind the duo taking pictures at the time when it dropped to watch the entire crowd sway and bounce in unison was truly one of the most beautiful things I’ve seen in my entire life. Their set was a perfect ending to a fantastic festival and I can’t wait to see them again this weekend at Hard Summer Music Festival.