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MOVEMENT 2012 Review


Although others in the festivalZOO crew had been before, this was my first year attending MOVEMENT or DEMF, as many still call it. I must admit, I had high expectations due to all the incredible things I have heard from years past and having high expectations is often the quickest path to disappointment. I am happy to report that my expectations were not only met but were exceeded! MOVEMENT 2012 was, hands down, the best festival experience I have ever had and I attended my first festival in 1999.

To say downtown Detroit’s Hart Plaza is a one of a kind venue would be an understatement. I don’t know what happens there when the festival isn’t taking place but it seems like it was built specifically for that purpose. The venue being so great directly impacted other things, such as the layout of the stages, the organization, the media set-up and the staff- all which were top notch.

What stood out to me as the main reason MOVEMENT was so special was the contagious feel-good vibe and energy that permeated MOVEMENT and spread through everyone - both festival go’ers and artists alike. Never before have I attended an event where the
DJ’s were so supportive of one another that you would find them in the crowd dancing to one another’s sets, walking around the festival grounds and mingling with the fans or hugging each other every chance they got. And the festival go’ers were a major piece to this festival experience, as well. From the people I went with, to those I spent most of my time with, to the new friends I made along the way, you all contributed in a positive way to my experience - thank you for the laughs and the good times.

Now for a round up of the highlights music-wise. I spent the majority of my time at the Beatport Stage. With the Detroit River and Canada as the backdrop and a ridiculous lineup all three days, who could blame me? The first act I caught on Saturday afternoon was Tale of Us - one of the two acts that I was looking most forward to seeing. They had a relatively early set time (3PM) so they needed to get everyone grooving and that they did! They set the mood by pumping out tracks such as “Mugen” by Nicolas Masseyef. I sort of agree with my husband in that their dark, bouncy and layered sound isn’t exactly designed for an afternoon set but I didn’t care - my ears were feening for some Tale of Us and they got their fix!

Benoit and Sergio killed it (keep an eye out for an interview with these guys) and the crowd went nuts as they dropped their track that put them on the map “Walk and Talk.” While one of the coolest moments of the weekend was when Infinity Ink gave an impromptu live performance of their hot track “Infinity.”

As darkness started to fill the night sky, so too did the sweet sounds of the big guns. The best one-two punch all weekend was Damian Lazarus followed by my #1 set of the entire weekend - Davide Squillace.

Kudos to Chuck Flask, the Beatport Stage Manager, for scheduling these two one after another because Lazarus opening for Squillace was match made in heaven. In fact, we went to the Circo Loco afterparty to get a second dose of this exact lineup but but the party was interrupted around 4AM when Lazarus was wrapping up his set and right before Squillace was due to come on. The police broke it up for what most likely exceeding capacity. When we returned a couple hours later for a bright and early Circo Loco daytime session, we learned that Squillace’s set got nixed. Almost everyone I spoke to at Circo Loco was there to see Squillace - a rare disappointing moment from the weekend. Closing out the night were Seth Troxler and Guy Gerber b2b and that was something else! These guys took their sound to a crazy new level playing together and I can’t imagine a better ending to the first day of the festival.

On Saturday we jumped around more between stages. Finally I had two serious reasons make a stop at the massive main stage Marco Carola and Loco Dice (who got introduced by Ice-T, yes that Ice-T). These two fellas never disappoint and always stay true to their sound - which is sometimes hard to do at a festival.


When we ventured to the Made In Detroit Stage, MK, legendary remixer and veteran of the Detroit scene, was pumping some deep and groovy goodness through the speakers. After countless hours of various shades of techo, the deep house beat and vocals were downright seductive.

We didn’t stay too long as we had to see what SBTRKT was all about on the Red Bull Music Academy stage. This was the first time seeing SBTRKT and with a quick scan of the crowd, it was obvious this d-n-b meets electro star (and his mask) has a cult-like following, especially heavy with young generation of EDM fans.

Speaking of cult-like followings, Saturday night also ended on a ridiculously amazing note as Claude Von Stroke worked his magic on the Beatport Stage, closing with a track that has been playing in my house for a couple weeks - “Don’t Go (Dirty Bird),” by Justin Martin. He had the crowd worked into a frenzy to the point where they were begging and pleading for one more song (specifially “Booty Clap”) but instead CVS just smiled and took in all the love that was coming his way.

Monday we saw a little of Cassy’s set as it was just a very brief stop at the festival due to the fact we logged a few hours at Old Miami that morning (had to see Troxler’s roots) and had a plane to catch in the early evening.

In the end it was one of the best weekends of my life, THE best weekend of music and it just went by much too fast. Thank you friends (old and new) and thank you Detroit and see you again soon!

Related posts:

  1. 2012 Detroit Movement Line-Up Released!
  3. Official 2012 MOVEMENT Festival Poster Available Now!
  4. Movement Electronic Music Festival 2012 Pre-Parties and After Parties
  5. Movement Festival 2011 Review by Stage: Vitamin Water Stage (Main Stage)

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