Last year Belgium brothers Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike took the crown (including the amsterdammertje) and the number 1 position in the DJ MAG Top 100. It was clear that it was time for a new number 1, but who would that be? We went to the Heineken Music Hall to find out at the event hosted by AMF & DJ MAG. Check out our experience in the party-report below.
As it was the first time ever that there’s a separate event for the award-ceremony of the DJ MAG TOP 100 awards we were curious whether the event would be very popular. It clearly wasn’t sold-out but the fact that there was enough room to dance totally made up for that. There was a professional VIP-deck filled with artists and their guests and in the middle of the Heineken Music Hall a sort of catwalk had been placed which no doubt was a part of the show. As you can see on the picture below the stage looked quite cool.
Oliver Heldens, who later on received the award for highest House DJ awarded by the CEO of The Ocean Cleanup, was the first DJ to take the stage and he took care of a characteristic groovy warm-up. If you remember last year’s AMF edition Oliver stepped from the DJ booth away to shuffle with Tiësto and he did that again (solo) this year. There was quite a bit of speculation regarding the question who would be getting the ‘highest hard’ award but Angerfist, truly a pioneer within the harder styles scene, received the very first award in this new category. The Audi #Untaggable award is basically the award for the artist which can’t be categorized and has been moving up and down in the poll. Don Diablo, who was really happy and surprised, won this new category. We got a bit of goosebumps because the moment was there.. Who would be the new number 1 DJ in the world? It was Martin Garrix which in our opinion totally deserved this recognition for all his hard work and the crowd visibly agreed to that.
Martin Garrix got to play his very first set as the new number 1 DJ of the world and oh my the atmosphere and the amount of screams went through the roof and probably could be heard within a 1 kilometer radius! He played an absolutely brilliant set with only his own tracks mixed seamlessly keeping the energy on a very high level. It should be mentioned also that Tiësto who has been going strong in the poll for years handed out the trophy and the amsterdammertje to the new generation.
Amazingly Russian trio Swanky Tunes turned out to have improved their position in the top 100 by 70 spots (97 to 27) which seemed to come as a surprise to many people. As expected the award for the highest group went to the Belgium brothers Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike and the highest female act was for twin-sisters Liv & Mim aka NERVO.
One of the highlights of the night was the set that Indian DJ/producer KSHMR threw down after receiving the award for the highest live-act in the DJ MAG TOP 100 poll. Bowls of fire lighted up the Heineken Music Hall and we can honestly say that it was one of the best acts we’ve seen the whole year. The connection between the music and visuals was just perfect, it wasn’t a liveset, it was a story and he managed to bring emotion across in such a massive venue. It’s hard to describe what it felt like to witness but damn it felt great! Of course, he had incorporated tracks like ‘Wildcard’ and a couple of new tunes in his set.
The NERVO sisters had the tough job to take over the decks from KSHMR but they did that with flying colors. The crowd just can’t get enough from their hits like ‘Revolution’, ‘Feel Like Home’ and ‘Love Again’ which made it easy for everybody to enjoy since everybody knows those tunes. Quintino came on stage which makes sense since he remixed NERVO’s track ‘Hey Ricky’ so they are friends.
As can be expected after 2 great sets people needed to get some drinks and get some rest which explains why the crowd wasn’t as enthusiast about the Swanky Tunes’ performance. However, it might also be that their heavy electro set wasn’t really the favorite genre of the majority of the crowd. We must say that the set technically was alright in terms of mixing and build-up.
Before we knew it it was already time for the last set: Angerfist! Based on the reactions that the crowd gave when his music was played when he received the ‘Highest hard’ award we kind of expected that people would leave the venue. Despite that people went nuts and clearly wanted to get rid of their energy. We actually spotted 2 harder styles DJ’s in the crowd who are also good friends with Angerfist really enjoying his set (Crypsis and Radical Redemption). It was pretty amazing to see people from all over the world experience the harder styles, which they normally would never experience and we can say that surely some people instantly became a fan.
The Top 100 DJs Awards Party has been one hell of a ride. Never before were there this many categories so it makes sense to do it as a separate event. As always people had come from all over the world with their flags to represent their country. We’re not going our opinion on the complete top 100 since that’s a matter of personal taste however we feel that there have been some great winners this year and that they proved themselves with a great set. We suggest however that next year it would be better to reveal which acts will be performing sooner so it would probably be able to sell out, by which we obviously don’t mean revealing the top 100, but which the winners of which awards will be playing for sure (obviously, you can always incorporate special guests on the night itself). Despite that little side-note we can definitely recommend to visit the Top 100 DJs Awards Party because of the atmosphere & the goosebumps you’ll have throughout the event.
Reporter: Alexander Bouten