On September 27, 3lau (Justin Blau) invaded The Marc in San Marcos, Texas and blew everybody’s mind with his ridiculous mash up skills and charisma. It has been way too long since 3lau’s last stop in the area, and the Texas State University students, the majority of the attendees that night, proved to him that he definitely needs to frequent his visits to the South.
Picture a simple stage with curtains in the back that serves as the entrance/exit for artists and performers, an LED screen that’s about the size of a home’s French doors suspended above the DJ set up and no railings whatsoever to distance the crowd from the stage. There was an overall old school feel of the club was extremely memorable and unique. In fact, I can tell you know that because people were pressed up against the edge of the stage instead of being barricaded by a metal railings (as with most shows) made the experience ten times more amazing.
Opening for 3lau that night were Akreacha, and Gamma back-to-back with Andrew Moneta. All of whom rallied everybody for 3lau at midnight. Gamma and Moneta threw down a high energy set that shook the old school, theatre-like venue of The Marc. Playing all over central Texas for events like Lights All Night and Foam Wonderland, Gamma has opened for other huge headliners like Brillz, The Chainsmokers, and ETC! ETC! to name a few. I never would have thought remixing a heavy metal song like Drowning Pool’s “Let the Bodies Hit The Floor,” into danceable beats was possible until I heard these two perform. I absolutely enjoyed their head banging set, to say the least, and would love to see them again.
The moment 3lau got on stage, there was no doubt that he was going to turn The Marc into a madhouse. Correction, 3LAU’S HAUS. Ever since I saw 3lau for the first time at LED Anniversary in San Diego, CA last year, I’ve been anticipating the next time I will get to see him perform. Seamlessly mixing familiar vocals and acapellas with his own beats, there was no denying that 3lau is the king of mash-ups. From original mixes of songs like “Zombie” by Paris & Simo, bootleg of Tiesto’s “Bang,” to doing collabs with Botnek (“Vikings”) and trance titan Dash Berlin (“Somehow”), this twenty-three year old Progressive House producer has definitely come a long way in such a short period of time. His new single, “How You Love Me,” was an instant favorite of the crowd that night at San Marcos. EVERYBODY knew the lyrics by heart. And as I sang along to every word, I couldn’t help but reminisce to his Las Vegas EDC set on Main Stage from earlier this summer.
Aside from his music, 3lau is a one of a kind class act. He naturally knows how to interact with the crowd in a such a way that really gets them going. And nothing gets an audience wilder than than popping some André bottles and sharing a drink with the fans… by standing over them from the stage and pouring it directly into their mouths! I mean, how many fans can say their favorite DJ poured champagne in their mouths? Not too many. And while I’m sure that was the night’s main point for the few who were lucky, my highlight was when he got on top of the speakers with his classic “Jesus Pose,” arms out-stretched in the air while “Bad” by David Guetta and Showtek faded into his sick “15 drops in 20 seconds.” To say that it was mind 3lau-ing might actually be a bit of an understatement. Texas State Bobcats went crazier than they would have at a good ol’ Texan college football game. Talk about a good warm up for Tomorrow World!
Since kickstarting his career, 3lau has gotten a lot of positive recognition from fellow producers and publications like the Las Vegas Review Journal, deeming him as “one of America’s fastest-rising DJ-producers.” Recently, after putting on Twitter his thoughts about being discontent until he produces a timeless record, legendary Deadmau5 tweeted 3lau back, reassuring him with “I’ve head some cool sh*t from your direction… still lots to be proud of.” This could not be more true. 3lau is now constantly booked for a slew of major festivals like EDC, Ultra, and Electric Zoo. It’s amazing to see somebody my age to follow his dreams as a music producer, entertain a growing fan base and continue to pursue formal education… all at the same time. A DJ who produces good music and stays humble – he’s one to look out for.
Originally written for ENL by Erikha Fay