Traditionally, at the strike of midnight on New Year’s Eve, people embrace a “New Year, New Me” attitude. While this may have been the case for party-goers found on the dance floor at the Brooklyn Hangar, Justice rung in the new year with old school disco vibes that kept the warehouse pulsating with excitement until daybreak.
After neglecting the tour life for almost 3 years, you could almost feel the anticipation of Justice fans during the New Year’s Eve countdown: not to usher in 2016, but to welcome the French duo back after a prolonged absence. Watching disco ball light refract chaotically round the room mirrored the frenzied energy of the crowd. At a questionable capacity limit, bodies overflowed out the warehouse doors and into the cold Brooklyn air, but not one person was bothered since Justice made it so easy to be lost in the music. Of course Justice hits like “D.A.N.C.E,” “Civilization” and “We Are Your Friends” had the room erupt in sing alongs that shook the venue walls, but in an interesting twist, the duo used their headlining opportunity to feature groovy throwbacks, including The Pointer Sisters’ “I’m So Excited” and Joan Jett’s “I Love Rock N Roll.” Paying homage to all ends of the electronic spectrum, the setlist was diversified with hits like Hudson Mohawke’s “Ryderz” and Junior Senior’s “Move Your Feet” (a track you may not recognize by name, but will recognize from the White Chicks soundtrack). Thankfully since we live in a miraculous digital age, a crowd member was wise enough to record parts of Justice’s set, so we can all relive the glory here:
Supporting the iconic duo was the undisputed lord of ominous techno tunes: Gesaffelstein: always dressed to the 9’s and looking too fly for a white guy. If you have never experienced a live Gesaffelstein set, then I can only describe it as being the equivalent of what I would expect an Underworld rave emceed by Hades would feel like: dark lights, fog, and the insatiable urge to rage compound in full force in a captivating and beautiful way. Although he opened his set with his original song, “Pursuit,” he diversified it with different dark techno remixes that kept the room raging until 3:00AM.
If these vibes weren’t enough to entrance you, then Tom Howie and Jimmy Vallance, otherwise known as Bob Moses, certainly did the trick. Although the duo may be unfamiliar to some, there is no question that stardom is inevitable for them after watching them captivate the room. Bob Moses revamps everything you think you know about electronic music, as they mirror the similar dark tones you would hear from Gesaffelstein and pairing them with Howie’s vocals, reminiscent of Jim Morrison. Songs from their “All in All” and “Days Gone By” albums were played, including “Winter’s Song,” “Tearing Me Up” and “All I Want.”
Occasionally Howie would come to the front of the stage to show off how vast his skill set spans, where he accompanied Vallance’s electronic beats with a shredding electric guitar. The stage’s light set up and fog machines perfectly silhouetted each group member, adding a certain level of mysterious intrigue that no one could resist.
Regardless of the number of people packed in the space, it was refreshing to see a sea of music fans celebrating the new year and a mutual respect for intelligent dance music. Stay weird Brooklyn, and I hope you’ve all gotten back to a normal (functioning) sleep schedule.