Review

Eric Prydz at Printworks London, 28.02.20

London welcomed dance music royalty for an unforgettable night

Eric Prydz, truly the king of the progressive house sound, is one of those DJs you don’t want to skip when in town. Add on top of that a melodic masterclass from none other than ARTBAT who’ve had releases on labels such as Tale Of Us’ ‘Afterlife’ and Solomun’s ‘Diynamic,’ and it was certainly one we weren’t going to miss.

Unsurprisingly selling out on the day tickets were released, it was always going to be a special event for London, with it being Prydz’ only event in the city this year. Sure enough, the Press Halls were packed full of ‘Prydateers’ (super fans that can ID a track in seconds!) and new fans alike for a night of progressive heaven in an iconic industrial setting.

For more info on general Printworks take a look at our Afterlife review here.

ARTBAT

A duo who’ve taken the progressive scene by storm in the past 12 months, slingshotting their way to underground stardom. Now acclaimed as one of the leading names in their genre, Artur & Batish have found their hypnotic productions regularly supported by heavyweight artists such as Tale Of us and Solomun. Continuing their upward trajectory, saw the Ukrainians sharing the stage with one of dance music’s figurehead artists; Eric Prydz.

© Photography by Jake Davis (instagram.com/hungryvisuals)
© Photography by Jake Davis (instagram.com/hungryvisuals)

ARTBAT’s set at Printworks was littered with unreleased IDs, many of which were their own. These hair-raising melodies included one track which has been making the rounds for over a year. Check out Tale of Us playing it Junction 2 2019 below :

 

 

A standout moment came from the duo dropping their Beatport chart-topping anthem; ‘Keep Control’. The track is an awe-inspiring remix of Sono out on Armada Music, and has dominated the underground charts since its release.

 

Another notable highlight came from their euphoric remix of Monolink’s ‘Return To Oz’. The track’s throbbing bassline rumbled around the press halls, before the tense build up ended with a thumping drop and huge cheer from the captivated crowd.

 

Eric Prydz

With the show selling out in November last year, it left months of wondering what kind of set Eric would play. Usually found on the festival circuit, playing to tens of thousands of people, or bringing his incredible EPIC and HOLO shows around the world, it was a rare chance for London to see one of the world’s top DJs in an intimate setting. What’s especially captivating about Eric Prydz is that he has a myriad of aliases that he uses, his main three being Eric Prydz, Pryda, and Cirez D. Not one to stick to a single style, Eric’s sets are always weaving in and out of euphoric progressive house and techno, constantly keeping the dancefloor on its toes (and hands in the air!).

Even more so, is that many of the tracks Eric plays are from his private collection – as many Prydz fans will know he has scores of IDs and unreleased music that you can only hear at his shows. While Eric is used to his holograms and quite frankly, insane production, we were poised waiting to see what he would do with the Printworks space – the LED screen, hanging light rigs, crystal clear lasers, and swirling strobes suiting perfectly to the warehouse vibe inside the press halls.

As Eric was due to begin, we wondered whether a special Printworks ID could be in store for us…

Starting out with Pryda – ‘Armed’ – the crowd was instantly hooked to the 2007 Pryda Recordings classic. The infectious melody making sure that no one was stood still, it really set the tone for what kind of set was to be played.

The first 90 minutes were littered with Pryda classics like ‘Javlar’, and ‘Aftermath’ as well as some special IDs – Lolla and Ping Pong. It’s always special to hear unreleased music out, the way the crowd moves and cheers to music they’ve never heard before is something to behold. Shortly after came the Printworks ID – falling under the Cirez D alias, this absolutely took everyone by surprise, the thumping kick and swirling synths filling the press halls – we’re hoping he plays this one again.

The use of the lowered lighting rig during the performance lended itself to that of his Creamfields ‘VOID’ and Hi Ibiza days where the lights sit low on the crowd, making the space feel smaller before unleashing a flurry of beams and lasers. If the lights weren’t low, the LED screen was in full force – check out the tornado during ‘Stay With Me’  below!

One track which really stood out for us was the Eric Prydz remix of ‘Not Going Home’ by Faithless. This fast paced, hair-raising anthem perfectly encapsulated the dark setting of the club. The warm bass penetrating the crowd as the uplifting synths kept everyone’s hands up for the whole song.

We were also treated to the Holosphere edit of Mirage, which if any of you have been to the Holosphere shows knows, is an incredible edit – really taking the track to the next level. As we neared the end of the 3 hour performance, came a moment which left the crowd’s spirits at an all time high. ‘Opus’ – the perfect festival finisher, it’s a big-room crowd pleaser, although we’re not convinced it suited the dark, stripped-back aesthetic of Printworks. Check it out below and let us know what you think.

Finishing up the set with the very private remix of ‘M83’ – Midnight City was  a treat. Reserved only for Eric, this remix had everyone in the crowd singing along, with that famous melody echoing around the former printing press.An outstanding set from Eric Prydz, his mixing was fluid and almost unrecognisable; the sign of a true professional, and the accompanying visual experience made the event a truly incredible experience. Bravo, Eric – we’ll be seeing you in Liverpool!

Overall

A breathtaking audiovisual experience by some of the best in the game. A night which much like the music being played, took the crowd on a progressive journey with each performance building in character and depth.

Ending the night on a high saw an artist who’s touring schedule is usually accustomed to dizzying festival crowds reaching tens of thousands. This event saw him in a more intimate and cavernous space, yet still adding his signature style both musically and visually by making full use of the venue’s impressive production rig. However, this smaller stage for Prydz was noticeable in the crowd, with some moments being uncomfortably busy, though what can you expect for one of dance music’s kings on your doorstep. 9/10