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Zedd showcases his talents at Electric Zoo 2012 despite a safe set list

With such an amazing lineup for Electric Zoo 2012, picking the must see artists was hard to do. When I first saw the lineup and noticed that Zedd was scheduled for Sunday afternoon, I quickly made the decision to see the young electro phenom. Despite his recent successes, Zedd is still underrated. Before “Spectrum,” he had a ton of solid productions, many of which did not get the recognition they deserved (“Dovregrubben” anyone?) Although an avid fan, Sunday was my first time experiencing one of Zedd’s sets live — and I could not have been more impressed.

Zedd started his set the way many artists are doing it these days — open with a segment of your biggest track to get the crowd fired up, the move into the meat of the set. “Spectrum” is obviously Anton Zaslavski’s biggest track at the moment, but instead of using his original he opened with the Congorock remix. This immediately got the crowd going before he worked his way into “Titanium.” Surprisingly the Guetta favorite hadn’t received much play time at Zoo, so everyone immediately starting singing along before Zedd dropped into his remix of “Breakin’ a Sweat.” Usually artists playing this many hits get criticism, but Zedd wasn’t just letting these play through – he was clearly working the crowd – incorporating the a Capella to “Kick Out The Epic Motherfucker” before dropping into “Shave it” mixed with “Stars Come Out.”

Skrillex – Breakin’ a Sweat (Zedd Remix)

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Another track that was getting a ton of air at Zoo was “Who is Ready to Jump” in multiple remixed variations. This track really got the crowd going especially as Zedd added the “Party Rock” lyrics before dropping into Skrillex and Wolfgang Gartner’s track “The Devil’s Den.” The tent was probably 25 degrees hotter than the air outside and the intensity of Zedd’s set was not letting up.

Skrillex & Wolfgang Gartner – The Devil’s Den (Original Mix)

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Another Swedish House track “One,” got its respective playtime and remixing before Anton mixed into “Epic,” which always a surefire way to make a crowd go wild. As the sun was starting to set, Zedd showed no signs of slowing down. People started chanting “until they kick us out” as “Sleaze” came over the speakers. This led to one of my favorite tracks of his set, Klaas’s remix of “I Like to Move It.”

Real 2 Real – I Like To Move It (Klaas Mix)

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He kept switching things up until he hit Hardwell’s mashup of “Million Atoms to Apologize” which, by the third day of the festival, had already been played out. Zedd hit a disappointingly mainstream progression with tracks like “Aerodynamic Quasar Home,” “Antidote,” “Feel So Close” and the Ryan Riback remix of “Who is Ready to Jump.”  Despite my disappointment the crowd ate it up.  Zedd stuck to the mainstream with “Internet Friends,” “Warp,” and then finally hit his own track “Shotgun,” which was definitely a huge success and a welcome change from the countless Beatport chart toppers.

Zedd – The Legend of Zelda (Original Mix)

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As his set neared a close, Zedd still had some tricks up his sleeve. A remix to “Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger” was followed by “Let the Bass Kick” before progressing into a mashup of “Cinema” and “Shave it.”  Finally, Zedd came full circle and closed with the original mix of “Spectrum.” While his set wasn’t particularly risky or surprising, it was still extremely well done. His track selection walked the line between predictable and edgy and his unique style and energy more than made up for his safe decisions behind the decks. Zedd is poised to have any even bigger year in 2013 and we can’t wait to see him at a smaller venue — where we are sure he will really showcase his talents.

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