Live: Steve Aoki in DC

While the cold winter rain poured down on Washington, D.C., EDM fans were jumping, screaming and dancing to Steve Aoki’s energetic set late during his first night of his new tour.

Aoki began his Kolony tour with Desiigner at Echostage- a venue all too familiar with EDM artists and the high-spirited fans that come with. The venue was packed, possibly even overbooked, with fans squeezed tightly together from the front of the stage to the doors.

Though the venue was tight, that didn’t stop anyone from dancing in eager anticipation for Aoki to take the stage. With openers like Ricky Remedy, Grandtheft and Desiigner, the night was off to an amazingly dynamic start.

Around 1:30 in the morning, fans screamed as the lights dimmed and a loud bass rumbled through the speakers. You could feel the bass ringing throughout your entire body, but only momentarily before the giant black curtain hiding the stage fell to the floor, exposing Steve Aoki standing behind his classic DJ deck, ready to give his fans one hell of a night.

With lights blaring, amps booming and smoke bursting into the air, Aoki stood behind his deck, headphones over his ears and hands raised as he jumped and danced along to his own music, the crowd happily mimicking him. You could see it in the way Aoki moved and the expressions on his face – he loved every minute of being on that stage.

Yet, it was when Aoki freed himself from his deck when he really took the concert to a new level. When Aoki grabbed the mic, ditched the headphones and walked out towards the crowd, everyone had a smile on their face, pushing and shoving to get closer to the DJ. Jumping, clapping and grabbing hands, Aoki riled up the crowd to an even higher level of energy than I previously thought possible.

Later in the night, Aoki played “A Light That Never Comes,” his famous song with Lincoln Park. The screen in the background played videos of Aoki and Chester Bennington performing in front of crowds, singing and hugging. Bennington\’s tragic death in 2017 made this a very touching tribute from what felt like an old friend.

All in all, Aoki put on a great first night of tour, leaving not one fan disappointed by the end of the night. The energy levels were insane but in the best possible way and I can genuinely say that Aoki is the only artist who I am okay with getting cake on me for.

-Alyssa Rotunno