Review: Sunnery James and Ryan Marciano @ Surf Club 08-19-12 by Justin Marchese


Summer of 2012 is quickly winding down. Where did the time go? Seems like yesterday that Sunnery James and Ryan Marciano started the summer off right, taking over the Meadowlands at EDCNY. What an epic set that was, making sure that their names were stapled into the audiences mind forever. This time the Dutch duo took over the Jersey shore in style, spinning one of the sexiest, epic sets Surf Club has ever heard.

As people piled into the beach club during the day, you could tell there was a buzz in the air. People from all parts of the shore and New York knew what they were coming to Ortley Beach for a party they would never forget. Even though Sunnery James and Ryan Marciano didn’t show their faces till about 9:30, this didn’t put a damper on the party at all. There were friendly smiles and kisses being tossed around throughout the beach club. We were all in store for a treat and that’s exactly what we got.

During the day we enjoyed dirty summer beats by DJ Perry, who honestly couldn’t have opened the party up any better. Dropping hits like “Russian March” by Dirty South and Bob Sinclar, or Thomas Gold’s remix of “Reach Out” by Sander Van Doorn, forced beautiful girls wearing almost nothing, to shake what they had for wandering eyes. Even if you were kicking back, taking in some rays on the beach, you could not miss a beat. The bass was kicking hard, forcing the music to get inside of you, taking control of your body. Whether you were head-bopping or fist-pumping, this was without a doubt one of the loudest sound systems to memory. Perry did a great job keeping the mid-day beach bums dancing.

Sevag took over around 5pm, and had the place rockin for the next 4.5 hours! He was originally scheduled from 5-7, but thankfully we got to hear twice the set. The dance floor was packed the whole time, so you know everyone loved his track selection. Some highlights from his epic set included My Digital Enemy’s “Reaper”, Antranig’s “Whores”, Mark Knight’s “Nothing Matters”, Erick Morillo & Eddy Theonick’s anthem, “Live Your Life”, and Thomas Gold’s “Sing 2 Me”. Sevag turned up the tempo during the second half of his set to keep the crowd moving, and it worked. He dropped two original tracks including Sevag & Phunk Kings ft. Rebecca Lullio “Adrenaline”, and Phunk Kings & Sevag “Genesis”. Check out his original track:

As day came to night, and the beautiful Jersey sun set across the calm ocean, the crowd grew antsy awaiting the arrival of the Dutch duo powerhouse. With tweets by Sunnery James stating “Off to @JhSurfClub now!! Are you Jersey partyheads ready?!!”, the crowd was fully prepared for what was about to go down.

Around 9:30, everyone in the back of the club flocked to the dance floor, as Joe Brunning’s “Now Let Me See You Work” kicked off Sunnery James and Ryan Marciano’s massive set. The crowd erupted, sending arms straight into the air and head bopping to a maximum. As the two DJs stood underneath a huge disco ball 15 feet above the crowd in a red light, is was a perfect view of the long haired, dark skinned, body shaking DJs that we’ve all came to know and love. If you love house music, and those two names don’t instantly bring a smile to your face, then your heart isn’t pure EDM.

SJRM played everything you could ever want in a perfect house music set, and I mean absolutely everything. This sandy, sweaty, highly intense dance floor did not miss a beat. The infamous monkey song “Azumba” by Gregor Salo sent strobe lights and beautiful bouncing colors across the jam packed floor. “No Beef” by Afrojack and Steve Aoki, “Paradise” by Tiesto, “Spectrum” by Zedd, and “Spaceman by Hardwell is just a short list of summer jams they played, which made their set one of the more epic house sets ever played at Surf Club. Perfecting a song they made for God himself; Tiesto’s “Lethal Industry” sent this Jersey strong crowd into a complete frenzy. The booming sound system scared any seagull on the beach far, far away. Their own production, “Tribeca”, could be the anthem of the summer, judging by the crowd’s enormous reaction.

The staple to all of their sets is their drops, pulling songs seemingly out of thin air that you could never imagine mixing well with some vocals. Some of their mash-ups included Avicii’s “Levels” into “Up” by Nari and Milani, Swedish House Mafia’s “Save The World” into Otto Knows “Million Voices”, and “Atom” by Nari and Milani into longtime favorite “Koko” by Sander Van Doorn. These sent screaming vowels all over the dance floor. The peak of the night, which made the crowd go absolutely insane, was when these two Dutch masterminds played Swedish House Mafia’s “Greyhound” into the awesome vocals of Justice’s “We Are Your Friends”. Everyone sang in unison, as expected. After three hours of dark, tribal goodness, Sunnery thanked everyone again for a great time and they left at 12:30.

Axwell has been quoted saying, “If there was a Dutch version of Swedish House Mafia, it would be Sunnery James and Ryan Marciano”. He is exactly right. It’s just that mix between house music and tribal that no one can match; that intensity throughout their whole set that no one else can mimic. Their music gets inside of you, making you feel more alive and upbeat than you’ve ever felt before. Although the Surf Club sound system left some fans deaf after show, there was not a single complaint about one of the best parties the Jersey shore had to offer.

The EDMNYC crew and I will definitely be at the Electric Zoo afterparty at Pacha NYC on Friday, August 31st with these guys. See you then!

Justin Marchese for EDMNYC

*Photo of SEVAG courtesy of Studio F Photography*
*Photos courtesy of Jeff Bacani for Pacha NYC*


About Author


Justin is a 28-year-old writer based out of Long Island. He is an IT professional and certified web developer from General Assembly. Over the years his music style has changed up, but he still has mad love for Tiesto and Quintino.

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