The showman returns

In 2009 Tiësto set a very high standard in his first event at Victoria Park in London. There was huge anticipation therefore for his appearance in 2010.

Excitement had been building for weeks – not only among my small group of friends but throughout the wider global dance community which these days communicates via social media such as Facebook and Twitter.

The day arrived sunny and bright but increasingly turned moody with the threat of rain. I arrived among a throng of ardent fans, committed clubbers and the merely curious.

I headed first for the main stage and noticed the quality of the sound. So often outdoor events have limited levels and the music can seem muffled but the effect here was loud, clear and pleasing to the ear.

Drum and bass band Pendulum were playing on the main stage but I headed to the Mixmag Arena to catch Eddie Halliwell who was on fine form.

The arena was packed with hardened clubbers and Halliwell was entertaining with his usual turntable tricks and classics such as Binary Finary – 1998 and Thrillseekers – Synaesthesia.

Increasingly in London and around the country, nightclubs are finding it tough to stay in business as people stay in pubs later into the night or prefer to drink at home after their finances have been hit by the recession.

It was reassuring therefore to see passionate dance music enthusiasts out in force and begging for more with the chants of “Eddie Eddie” which accompany any appearance by Halliwell.

When his set came to a rather abrupt end it was time for the herd of clubbers to graze in the direction of the main event.

Although alone on stage, Tiësto’s dj appearances are now always accompanied by theatrical stage lighting, visuals and pyrotechnics.

He is no longer simply a dj and producer who stands behind the decks playing music to the crowd.

These days any performance by Tiësto is an event.

The opening of his set included a range of tracks from his latest album – Kaleidoscope – including Escape Me and I Will Be Here and was clearly influenced by the current huge popularity of electro dance music.

But he went on to deliver one of the toughest and hardest sets I have ever heard him play.

I recently read that he has changed his dj technique and style and on the evidence of this set this would seem to be the case.

The Tiësto classics were still there. He played Lethal Industry, Flight 643 and Adagio For Strings but this was definitely a harder, tougher, darker Tiësto who having enticed you to the dance floor intended to keep you there dancing full on right to the end.

The remix he played of Benny Benassi – Satisfaction exemplified this new facet of his musical character.

Tiësto has become a worldwide phenomenon with a huge dedicated following because he can sense and react to the constantly changing vibe of the dance floor.

His evolution as a dj, producer and performer continues and it is hugely exciting.

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