Deadmau5 plays Polar set for lifeless audience
A night of mediocre music and little else
I really wanted to like the Polar music festival featuring Deadmau5 at the BMO Centre on Dec. 28, I really did. But amidst the sea of inebriated patrons sluggishly grinding on a beer-soaked floor were my unfulfilled expectations.
After waiting in the VIP line to redeem my ticket and receive my pass — a line four times longer than the general admission line — I entered the venue.
Perhaps my expectations were too high, but when I was walked into the concrete arena I was taken aback by how little there actually was. A stage in a tiny strip of the massive BMO Centre, a sectioned area for those with a VIP pass, some white lights hanging from the ceiling and little else.
Chaotic and uncontrolled lines at the bars led to forty-five minute waits, even in the VIP area.
Organizers encouraged attendees to wear all white for the Arctic theme and although some did come wearing head-to-toe white, most just wore whatever they felt like wearing for the night.
I was hoping for a much more impressive light show or even some cheesy confetti mid-way through a song to mimic snow, which might have salvaged or added to Polar’s theme. Everything needed to be at least 20 per cent cooler.
Third opening act Mord Fustang stole the show with a style of music the audience could actually dance to. He instantly brought energy to the crowd that was nonexistent from the DJs preceding him — local acts Dom G and Titus 1 — and finally, the crowd had a pulse.
Chris Lake was forgettable, playing prior to Deadmau5 but with nothing exciting to show for himself aside from a brief equipment malfunction. Sometime after midnight, Deadmau5 began his set.
Although I can only name a handful of Deadmau5 tracks, I am certainly a fan of his style and variety. His live performance is fantastic, but even during most of his two-hour set, the crowd didn’t seem struck with the dance-bug. It was during his song “The Veldt” that the crowd screamed with enthusiasm and began to show signs of life. Unfortunately, it was too little too late, as this was nearing the end of the show.
As my friends and I exited the venue, we heard other patrons complaining that he didn’t give an encore, nor play his more mainstream tracks, such as “Raise Your Weapons.” To be quite honest, this crowd didn’t deserve an encore after standing there lifelessly — aside from brief moments — during his set.
I wouldn’t see Deadmau5 perform live in Calgary again. Rather, I’d see him perform in a city that appreciates his ingenuity to the genres he encompasses with a pulse to show for it.
If you’re insistent on seeing Deadmau5 perform the next time he visits our city, don’t waste your money on a VIP ticket. The only added benefit of spending an extra $40 dollars was that every once in a while I found an empty chair in the VIP section to rest my feet and people-watch.