NOS Events Center
March 3, 2012
Guerilla Union threw another successful festival in Cypress Hill's Smokeout 2012. The all day mind opening experience showcased a unique lineup with a wide variety of talented artists including hip-hop, heavy metal, dubstep, experimental, reggae and electronic music. Featuring three unique stages, Sublime With Rome headlined the Smokeout Stage with the support of heavy metal's Korn, Smoke out founders Cypress Hill, and hip hop sensation Wiz Khalifa. The Massive Stoned Garden was headlined by UK's Rusko's and a special performance with Cypress Hill and Travis Barker. Other supporting acts were Thievery Corporation, electronic superstar Wolfgang Gartner and the reunion of MSTRKRFT. The experimental hip hop Low End Theory fittingly headlined their own stage, the Low End Theory Stage with support from Daedelus, and Danny Brown.
As the drunk Mad Hatter of wobble took the stage, he said, “No more set times, no more set times. We are staying till they kick us out”.Rusko took the crowd on a future ship with lazar sounds and galactic Strobes lights. He performed a futuristic remix of California love, with the setting looking like a wild ride from Fantasmic. Even with all the crazy lights and massive bass drops, this was not the rave crowd of shuffling, glow stick possessing party people. The true loyalist were at the front of the crowd dancing to every beat, but it was disappointing to see a somber crowd that was too faded to get down and dance to electronic music. Rusko kept his set going as he performed multiple mixes of “Somebody To Love (Skream, Sigma and Original Remixes)”, “Everybody (Netsky and Original Remixes)” and “Hold On (Subfocus and Original Remixes) Rusko is a talented DJ and even though his drunken cross faded state, he mixed and transitioned to each song with perfection. The mixes sounded great, but they were all drug out too long and lost their amazement. Nearing the end of his set the twitching, aerobic dancing DJ kept screaming “Fuck you Police, Fuck you security. You are going to have to drag me off stage” He laughed at the crowd by saying” Dubstep is from the UK (laughs), It's not from heavy metal.
As an encore, Travis Barker and Cypress Hill joined Rusko for the first ever Cypress Hill X Rusko set. B Real took the mic with an all white suit and announced, “This is the Late Night Shift.” They performed two new songs and torn down the house with their new song 'Light It Up.'
Critics Bias: I think Cypress Hill and Travis Barker with Rusko should have performed on the main stage. It felt like an after house special performance. I'd understand if it was a underground show and Cypress Hill was a true special guest, but this was their freaking festival. I would have loved to see the whole festival get down to the Late Night Shift. Also: I mostly go to raves so it was a nice change of pace, and cool to see all types of music all in one day.
Setbacks: Technical difficulties, delayed set times, lineup organization and poorly organized lines; VIP, press, patient drinking wristband line.
Overheard in the crowd: On Korn's none moshing crowd – “This crowd is tame. I wonder what would happen if their was a festival influenced by cocaine.”