Spring Awakening 2013: One Genre, One Crowd, One Love

The clock struck half past 2 on a perfect Friday afternoon in June. Thousands of dance music fans gathered at the two entrances of Soldier Field in downtown Chicago for Year Two of Chicago’s premier dance music festival, Spring Awakening, hosted by React Presents. Spring Awakening experienced another astronomical year. With a lineup that consists of some of the most world-renowned DJs, it’s no wonder the festival was such a success.

Beachmonkey.com was fortunate enough to have the opportunity to cover the event. Here are the highlights from each day of the festival.


Ex-Glitch Mob member, Ooah, and the infamous MartyParty teamed up to form the new trap, glitch-hop, dubstep duo, PantyRaid. PantyRaid provided the crowd at the mainstage with a very chill, yet grimey set. Dubstep and trap fans felt the vibe and definitely got into the groove with dirty dancing. Immediately after PantyRaid, a completely different vibe filled the air at Soldier Field. This group, Melbourn house duo Bingo Players energized the crowd with their chart-topping hits “Rattle” and “Cry, Just A Little.” Roughly one hour after Bingo Players’ high-energy set, Nero took the stage and brought a killer performance. Not only was the music memorable, but the laser production left the fans star-struck and wanting more.


With rain in the forecast, one might have thought Saturday would be the worst day for Spring Awakening-goers. But the rain held off for most of the day and the lineup showed that Saturday might have just been the most memorable.

We made our way to the Equinox stage to catch the new Fool’s Gold artist, Oliver. Oliver brought some of the funkiest music to the dance floor especially with his most famous track, “Move Your Body.” There’s nothing like listening to some head-bobbing music on a hot Saturday afternoon. We decided to stay at the Equinox stage for most of the day to catch artists who are helping to bring dance music into the mainstream world. One such artist is world-renowned DJ/producer, Zedd. It was no surprise that Zedd brought a crowd spanning the entire length of the venue. This young producer knows how to make a sweat-covered crowd go even more insane.

To end the night, we made our way over to the main stage to experience an intense amount of bass and a crowd full of “Bass Heads.” The Saturday headliner, Bassnectar, had the entire field and first deck of stands entirely packed for his set. About halfway through his set, the rain started to set in – this did not stop the crowd from raging, in fact, it made them go even harder. Unfortunately, the clock struck 11:00 PM and, due to city time limits, Bassnectar had to shut the music down in the middle of his famous track, “Bass Head.”


We arrived early for our third and final day at Spring Awakening. The weather was scorching hot and extremely humid, but this did not stop anyone from having a good time. When we arrived at the venue, we see an enormous line forming behind the This Song is Sick meet and greet tent. At 2:20, we see Jahan Yousaf, Yasmine Yousaf, and Kris Trindl (aka Krewella) walk into the tent. Krewella consists of two sisters and a male best friend from Chicago. Krewella’s hit track “Alive” from their debut EP has received the kind of accolades that most DJs only dream of receiving. It has been featured on pop radio stations, ESPN, and has reached the top 40 on iTunes.

The line for their meet and greet was so long that they could only see half of their fans in the time allotted to them. While some may be sad that they couldn’t meet this down-to-earth trio, they still were able to see an amazing one hour set from Krewella at the mainstage afterwards. The set featured most of their unreleased tracks (which will be on their debut full-length album in the fall), live vocals, and surprise appearances from Chicago Bull, Jimmy Butler and Adventure Club’s Leighton James.

It was only 5:30 in the evening and the entire field of Soldier was covered with Krewella fanatics. Needless to say, the hometown support was there during this hour long frenzy.


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