A festival inspired New Years event was in great anticipation as the crowds lined up to fill the Rosemont Convention Center. Being not only NYE party; but a two day event, December 30th and New Year’s Eve the 31st. The event thrown by React Presents and entitled Reaction was covered by Abc 7 News; bringing a true taste of underground Chicago into city and suburban homes alike. Acts such as Skrillex, deadmau5, Chance the Rapper, the Floozies, Purity Ring and some of Chicago’s own; Porn and Chicken and Autograf. 2015 passed and we took with us new inspiring acts of entertainment with newly arranged transcendental melodies welcoming us into the new year of 2016.
It was a night of free spirits who dressed every which way they felt to express themselves. Mixed throughout crowds from elegant black dress and stilettos to fringed Minnetonka moccasins and mid-drifts there was an unanimous joyous feeling that ran throughout. Large balloons of opal white lined the walk ways as violet lights sprayed the words Reaction across the focus of the molded wall.
Upon entering there were 3 main stages to choose from; The Warehouse, the Hall, and The Arcade Stage. And as the name implies; there were tons of arcade games to fill your minds with whilst enjoying a live dj set behind you.
The stage set-ups were futuristic an with alien-esque vibe. Their vibrant colors and mesmerizing patterns pulled fans into the disembodiment of the music. Photographers filled the photo pit with electricity running through their veins trying to snap the perfect moment. The artistry of the stage complimented the music in such a harmonious matter; one could loose themselves in the beauty of it all. Computer graphics led this new wave of expression which evolved greatly from a Woodstock inspiration of color dyes and oils on primitive projector screens. Lights began covering the crowd in their warmth whilst dance beats realigned hearts in syncopation. Rhythms welcoming people of all forms and backgrounds allowed them to live freely at that very second and let go of reality.
Vendors sat on the outskirts offering intricately designed hats, shirts, pins and of course alcohol. A Monaco cocktail photo booth offered free polaroids and free samples of their favorite flavors. Grassroots California was also posted up faithfully for their dedicated followers; bringing along their famously designs hats.
With great inspiration from rock and funk the Floozies took the stage with a performing duo of Guitarist/ Dj Matt Hill and drummer Mark Hill. Crowds dripped in the juice of guitar solos as the Floozies allowed us within the bond of their brotherhood.
A shout out came from Chance the Rapper as Chicago Music Festivals stood within the crowd that definitely did not go unheard. Naturally born stage presence graced us with tongue twisting syllables all wrapped up in a caramel smoothness. He effortlessly combines lyrical rap with raspy melodic chorus; sharing from pages of his own life experiences.
Skrillex was saved for the last act of NYE. His music sent a pandemic over the crowd in synthesizers that crushed any hope of being able resist the power behind it. His high energy performance sent the crowds into a head banging frenzy; strong enough to misalign their spines. Spot lights swam from left to right in wild distortions as he bent and manipulated sounds transmitted from the unseen worlds of his imagination.
Promiscuity in dress and fashion, basketball gurus modeling the triceps/bicep combinations in sleeveless shirts, cold drinks, and lovely women filled the floors while an ontology of thought seemed to take hold behind each synthesized note. NYE brought entertainment and cosmic artistry into the same room and blended it all together. It can only be of my wildest dreams how the year 2016 will evolve these acts further. From the tireless innovations and hard work of our rising youth; Happy New Year!