Memory Lane Monday: Above & Beyond @ Opera Atlanta 09.14.2013

Every year I make the annual "pilgrimage" to see Above & Beyond somewhere around the United States. Afterwards my words account for the emotional, musical journey on various websites, including the one below that was featured on Due to a few circumstances, this year's A&B review at EDCLV fell through. Therefore, I have decided to take a trip back in time and re-experience what these guys are all about.

There was certain static in the evening air Saturday as a line started to form at Atlanta’s primer nightclub, Opera. Various attendees, sporting formal attire to Anjuna wear, were all out to show their support of one the biggest acts in the electronic dance music industry. In fact, fictional characters Gumby, Bert & Ernie, and Chewbacca made an impressive appearance. It goes to show that music truly brings all walks of life together.

Architecturally designed to resemble an opera/theatre house, Opera Nightclub is an elaborate multilevel entertainment venue. Equipped with cabanas, deck viewing, unlimited suites and VIP box seating all centering on the main platform. Patrons were greeted to services with a smile including the rest areas.

Resident DJ Danny M provided a deep yet energetic two and a half opening set. By the end, it was a packed house and a roar of cheer swept over as he thankfully bowed to the audience. His enthusiasm was felt and replicated.

Phenomenal is an understatement for the trio of trance, Above & Beyond. They have a noteworthy history of literally living up to their name, which is evident in their productions and fan base. Atlanta welcomed Tony and Jono with open arms, ears, and hearts. “It’s nice to be back in Georgia” lit up the visual backboard as they got settled in for an emotional musical journey.

They started off with the haunting vocals of Lana del Ray’s Young & Beautiful (Summer Love Mix). The guys highlighted a few of their favorite tracks such as the enchanting Need Your Love by musical visionary Andrew Bayer, Genix’s Stateside, London Grammer’s Hey Now (Arty Remix), and Maor Levi’s Starlight Remix of Passion Pit’s Let Your Love Grow Tall. They also did an outstanding retake on a Depeche Mode classic. As devote fans of Breaking Bad, the evening wouldn’t be complete without them dropping Walter White, a massive club banger of the evening. And of course no A&B performance would be complete without some Group Therapy; Alchemy, Thing Called Love, Black Room Boy, Sun & Moon, and You Gotta Go. Rounding out the night was a tear-jerking acoustic of Satellite.

Visual backgrounds are an important factor for experiencing Above & Beyond. It gives us an inside to what the artist may encounter along their travels. More importantly it brings us closer to the world around us. Above & Beyond took us around the world from the multi-colored inhabitants of the deep ocean, the human inhabitants of London’s underground to the edge of our solar system. The illustrations also gave an optical of our inner emotions towards particular tracks.

With each annual performance attended of Above & Beyond, the passion is amplified. Tears stream as the lasers beam and moments in time are at a stand still. If one had to choose a first time electronic dance music experience, or concert in general, without hesitation Above & Beyond would be highly recommended.