Electric Zoo 2017 Review
By Kristine Kennedy
Photos by Michael Beas
Tens of thousands of animals converged onto Randall’s Island over Labor Day weekend to celebrate their love of dance music underneath the famed New York City skyline. This year, we experienced beautiful weather, as well as total downpours; the famed plush blanket of green grass, as well as mud puddles galore. No matter what though, we found the beauty in it all and gathered with new friends and old to dance all day and night. We even saw a select few brushing up on their puddle jumping skills!
Each year this festival just gets better and better. One change this year that we greatly enjoyed was the demise of “EZOO Bucks”. The festival is cashless, which is something we always loved (less things to stuff into your pockets!), but the former island currency was just plain confusing. This year everything was in dollar amounts so it made adding money onto your bracelet very simple because you were able to guesstimate a lot better for how much you thought you would spend at the festival. We’re here for the music, not for the math games!
We loved the stages this year and how they really incorporated New York City into the designs. The hospitality was top notch – always full of friendly faces happy to help. EZoo has some of the best choices we’ve seen for food vendors and this year did not disappoint at all. Although we admittedly did not venture farther than our beloved Big Mozz, there truly was something for everybody to enjoy. And the talent? We heard repeatedly from festival-goers throughout the three days that this was simply the best lineup the festival had ever had. And we just have to agree with everyone on that!
Top 5 Sets
Armin Van Buuren
No surprise here – once again this man stole the show! Armin seems to have completely perfected the art of grabbing his audience and telling us all a beautiful story through his sets. We came ready for A State of Trance and Armin gave us that and so much more, even giving nod of appreciation to those New York fans who had followed him since his career starts in the city that never sleeps.
Deadmau5 & Eric Prydz
Two legends in a b2b set to close out this festival…all we had to say was “hit me with those laser beams!” The visuals were spot on and the bass was heavy and this set was jam-packed with 90 minutes of pure techno heaven.
Above & Beyond
What’s more beautiful than experiencing an Above & Beyond set? An Above & Beyond set in the rain. The visuals amidst the rain created a glitter-like effect above the loyal crowd who braved the cold and rain to experience this masterpiece of a set. The trio has had some run-ins with the rain in a number of other festival appearances this year, but we think the EZoo crowd was lucky to experience the beauty that the rain brought to this set.
Being self-admitted Tritonians, we were super excited to catch this set. We had such a blast during their set that we decided to catch them for round 2 as they headlined Marquee for an after party Saturday night. Marquee is always a fantastic time. Add Tritonal to the mix and we knew we were in for an awesome party!
Sunnery James & Ryan Marciano
WHOA. This set completely defined ‘Sexy by Nature’! Sunnery and Ryan really came to party today and they had the whole crowd grooving. It’s all about the energy and these two meshed perfectly with the crowd. We had the opportunity to catch up with the guys after their set – be sure to read up on how they come to truly defining their sets.
One by one the animals retreated off the island at the end of the 2017 installment of EZoo, bringing with them many memories made on the island during the weekend, as well as some muddy shoes that would likely need some cleaning. One thing is for certain – we can’t wait until Electric Zoo opens its doors to us all again!
We’ll see all you animals in 2018! Stay wild!