When it comes to the DJ Mag top 100 ballot, even these two guys know who gets my number “ONE” vote. Sunnery James and Ryan Marciano have become so close with me that they play at least one Sebastian Ingrosso track for me at every show. This token of affection only enhances the amount of love and support I have for these guys, who earn the number two slot on my ballot, and in general. Oh, and by the way, they totally love the fact that next to Seb they’re my favorite, because they know how much I truly love that guy.
Sunnery and Ryan have continued to impress me more and more with every show we’ve been to since the very first show we saw in April of 2011 when they closed for Avicii at Pacha NYC. On that night, Spencer prefaced us all by saying, “These guys are awesome!” and he was totally right. Our friend Ray repeatedly yelled out to us on the dance floor, “Best closing ever, bro! Best closing ever!”, as we first fell in love with this incredible Dutch duo 15 months ago.
Since the first show, I’ve probably had the pleasure of seeing them close to a dozen times, interviewed them a handful of times, and have invited many friends along the way to join the SJRM fan circle. On Sunday night, July 22nd, a group of friends joined me at the brand new Revel Casino in Atlantic City, NJ as we went to HQ Nightclub for the first time. Since I’ve written so many reviews of Sunnery and Ryan, and sing their praises constantly, I’m going to let you hear a few other perspectives from that night! But before we get to the “and friends” portion of my review, I have to say a few things myself.
This nearly four-hour set was filled with amazing selections like “Paradise”, “Big Bad Wolf”, “In My Mind”, “Paris Luanda”, “Devils Work”, and “Party Non Stop”, just to name a few. One track that stood out to me was a sexy tribal version of Ricky L’s “Born Again”. After that, around 4am, we were transported to what I like to call, the “Amazone” portion of the night. We partied right next to the booth all night watching the guy who supposedly won a million dollars go in and out of the booth with his champagne and “I Like Vagina” hat on. Yes, really. They closed out their set with “Kidsos”, pointing and smiling at me in all my glory, and then thanked the crowd for coming to their first show in Atlantic City.
Although I didn’t get a video of “Kidsos”, I did get a video of “Calling” with a little help from my buddy Ryan Marciano. Check it out:
Like I’ve said, Sunnery and Ryan are absolutely incredible, but don’t just take my word for it! Now here’s what my friends had to say about their performance Sunday night at HQ Nightclub:
STEVE K. Princeton, NJ
“Seeing Sunnery and Ryan this past Sunday at Revel’s HQ was an amazing experience. For starters, the club is incredible because there are multiple levels and locations to watch the DJ and the rest of the party people. The lighting and sound system were perfect at feeding my undying hunger for deep bass and neon lights. This was the second time that I have seen Sunnery and Ryan, and I was even more impressed this time due to the smaller crowd and standing right next to the DJ booth with our friends. When you are up that close you are able to really see the love and energy that they have and why their sets are so great. Someone said that the set was supposed to be done at 3:30am, but thankfully they kept us all dancing for another hour. Afterwards, Nicole introduced us all to them. Getting to meet them was great because when you talk to them you can tell they love what they do, and more importantly,
they genuinely love and appreciate the fans that come and see them. They will definitely be getting one of my votes for DJ Mag this year.”
MIKE P. New York, NY
“My crew of house-heads finally got to pay a visit to Revel’s state-of-the-art night club: HQ. The club had a powerful sound system and theperfect size dance floor surrounded by large leather couches for the VIPs. The staff was very friendly and courteous. I had extremely high expectations for Sunnery James and Ryan Marciano because their EDCNYC performance, which is hands down, my favorite set of 2012. SJRM did not fail to deliver!
Their sound is extremely unique in a scene where many DJs are conforming to a house format. I would describe it as Dirty Contemporary Tribal House Music. They play all the hits that we know and love but mash them up in a creative and meaningful way; they also infuse a mix of hypnotic tribal jungle beats into their sound that makes the crowd go wild.
At one point of the night, exotic dancers came out on the East and West side stages of the club. They had bizarre Lady Gaga-esque black leather outfits on with pink neon lining. They danced along to the songs as they waved around their umbrellas and top hats. SJRM stopped the music to show their respect to the great Tiesto. “New Jersey make some fucking noise!” exclaimed Sunney James as the audience began to clap along to their remake of “Lethal Industry”.
Late into the night, a very old man made his way up to the DJ booth. Sunnery James shook his hand and energized him enough to make him break out in a flurry of dance moves as the crowd cheered him on. They performed an extended set that lasted until the lights went on at HQ at nearly 5am. It was a spectacular night all the way
through that I will tell my kids and grandkids; the same way my grandfather used to tell us war stories.”
PREETHAM R. New York, NY
“I wouldn’t have wanted my first experience at Revel’s new nightclub HQ to be any other way! Ryan Marciano and Sunnery James absolutely tore the roof off the venue with their high energy and seamless mixing. I’ve seen them perform at Pacha NYC multiple times and I was fortunate to catch them in Miami during WMC at the Shelbourne pool party this past spring. It’s really remarkable how responsive the crowd is throughout their entire set, and Sunday night was no different. The production of HQ just helped fuel the electric atmosphere with their incredible light show and sound system. I can’t wait to attend their next show at Pacha NYC on August 31st after day one of Electric Zoo.”
PERRY S. Jersey City, NJ
“I’ve been following SJRM since being introduced to the house scene in ’08. However, after seeing the passion and energy they put into their craft live for the first time in Dec ’10 at Pacha NYC opening for Fedde Le Grand, I was inspired to become a DJ myself. I’ve been to SJRM shows up and down the east coast from Miami, DC, Philly and even Montreal… and they NEVER disappoint. As opposed to many other DJ/Producers who give you predictable sets over and over, SJRM give you something different each time. Their ability to cross genres from deep/tech to high energy tribal/progressive is remarkable. Sunday night in AC was no different! I was blown away the last hour of the night… I think Nicole saw the look of awe on my face from across the room. Fame and success have not gotten the best of them, as these are the most humble and approachable DJs I’ve ever met. I’m happy to now call them my friends and mentors, and honored to be playing with SJRM when they return to NJ at Surf Club on August 19th.”
LEANDRO B. Union, NJ
“I’ve honestly lost count how many times I’ve seen these guys perform! Any time they’re in the area or even as far as Miami, I was there to enjoy the show and every single time they have not ceased to amaze me. Their sound is as unique as it gets, coupled with high energy and non-stop interaction with the fans helps make their show a must see. You can just sense their passion and love for the music when they
just can’t stop playing even after the club turns on the lights like at HQ. That last extra hour or so is the best part of the show where only the true fans are still around and when SJRM completely let loose and show you what it’s all about! I can’t wait to see them next month in Montreal and at Surf Club!”
RAYMOND J. Jersey City, NJ
“I remember the first time I saw SJRM when they closed for Avicii in early 2011 and they blew me away! I was like, “who are these guys???”At that time I already knew that they would be big in the future.
I was sooo excited to see them again at the new HQ Nightclub at Revel . They did not disappoint and COMPLETELY DESTROYED HQ! Within 15 minutes of their set they dropped “Now Let Me See You Work”, and I knew it was going to be an amazing night. Their non-stop energy and groovy sexy beats kept me on my feet for the entire set and nobody in our group could stop dancing! I can’t wait to see them again at Surf Club next month! Yeah Buddy!!!”
LACI Y. New York, NY
“Going into the night, I really wasn’t sure what to expect. Sunday was first time seeing SJRM and I’ve seen so much amazing talent recently that I can honestly say I went into the night with little to no expectations. Silly me! From opening to close, I was completely blown away. The energy and how SJRM were completely in sync kept me dancing throughout their entire set. SJRM definitely exceeded my expectations and then some. What an amazing night, with amazing friends, atmosphere and HOUSE MUSIC! It was definitely one for the books!”
MO A. Jersey City, NJ
“This was my 4th time seeing SJRM this year (Miami, EDCNYC, Pacha, HQ). From the opening remix, to “Now let me see you work”, to close, they had the crowd hooked more than any other DJs I’ve ever seen! Their sound is straight hypnotic. The club was full of pure energy, and no one stopped dancing the entire night. From calling out grandpa dancing, to taking people’s cameras and filming themselves, these guys have more fun in the booth than the crowd does sometimes. After the show they were nice enough to talk to us and take photos. How many superstar DJs do you know who walk out with the crowd and invite them to an after party? This was a night out I will never forget. Thanks, Nicole!”
There you have it… eight different perspectives from the show. As many mentioned, be sure to mark your calendar for their next upcoming shows: Sunday, August 19th at Surf Club for Surf Sundays powered by Pacha NYC, and Friday, August 31st at Pacha NYC for the E-zoo afterparty. Lastly, PLEASE don’t forget to include SJRM on your ballot for the DJ Mag Top 100. We’ve got about a month left to vote, so do the right thing and help these guys land a great spot on the chart.
Bring your sunglasses, bathing suit, and a smile… I’ll see you all at the beach for Surf Sundays on August 19th!