Five minutes before Showtek was set to perform on the Rockstar dubstep stage at Identity Festival Wantagh, they were told that they would have to play mainstage because Madeon missed his flight. Many of you probably recognize the name ‘Showtek’ from recent collaborations with Hardwell and Tiesto, but what you don’t know is just how hard these Dutchmen go. Consisting of Sjoerd and Wouter Janssen, the two brothers are not only bringing hardstyle to the USA but they brought the crowd to life before Eric Prydz, and surprised many attendees with their skills. If you’ve never listened to hardstyle then you must read below the break for 5 tracks you need to know.
1. Showtek & Hardwell – “How We Do”
This track set the crowd off, and could possibly be one of the most energetic songs of the night. Hardwell’s infectious synths combined with the quick pulsating bass of Showtek’s productions created a golden track. Stepping off stage, Showtek was still buzzing about how much energy that “How We Do” gave off.
2. Showtek & Tiesto – “Hell Yeah”
First previewed by Tiesto at Ultra, this is another massive track. Some people consider this the next “Maximal Crazy” as it seems to just set the crowd off regardless of when it’s played or who it’s played by. This song was played in the beginning of his set and actually led into “Maximal Crazy” keeping the energy of the fans higher than ever.
3. Showtek- “FTS”
“FTS” followed the always fun “Warp” and seemed to confuse most people at first. When the lyrics kicked in, folks weren’t really sure what to think; the dark vocal includes lines like “I live for the weekend, I live for Hardstyle.” The track quickly builds and people quickly got to dancing. Hands stayed in the air as Sjoerd kept pumping up the crowd.
4. Showtek – “Music On My Mind”
While the beat stays fast for “Music On My Mind,” this is actually one of their “softer” tracks. Showtek doesn’t like to stay constricted to any particular genre and is more concerned with having a good time and making the crowd go nuts. “Music On My Mind” uses pulsating synths and a hard bass beat to bring the crowd to life. Not only are the lyrics refreshing and different, but they also make for a great singalong.
5. Showtek – “Here We Fucking Go”
If you have ever watched David Guetta’s Nothing But The Beat, you know in Europe when the crowd chants “here we, here we, here we fucking go,” that they are having a great time. (You can think of it being sort of like chanting “Seven Nation Army” here in the States.) When Showtek dropped this, the crowd went wild. The beat is infectious and who doesn’t like a nice chant to get you pumped up.
The Bottom Line
When I first had heard that Showtek and Madeon had switched places, I was upset because I had really hoped to get in Prydz, Madeon, and Arty this Identity Festival and would save Showtek for another time. Not only was I very impressed by the selection of tracks but I might have gotten a little hooked on hardstyle. People were having a great time and the crowd had tremendous energy. “Rage Valley” was played towards the end of his set, and really sealed the deal for me as it’s one of my favorite tracks right now. Showtek might not be a common name in the US quite yet but I think darker, harder times are coming.