This was DEDIQATED – 20 YEARS OF Q-DANCE
WOW! I don´t know what you guys did last weekend, but I attended one of the most epic events of the last two decades. Q-Dance celebrated its 20th birthday with a bang in Netherland’s biggest arena, the Gelredome in Arnhem, calling for DEDIQATED.
After two decades the time had come for the world´s leading hardstyle event organization to celebrate its own birthday and by doing so – appreciating the history of hardstyle. Whilst the first decade was celebrated at the Feestfabriek in Amsterdam, the Gelredome should be the place of the next edition. The expectations went sky high and a lot of rumors circulated around. But we and 27.000 other hardstyle lovers followed the call of Q to find out, how this birthday would be celebrated.
Before we start, I need to let you know that I´m still flashed from this legendary birthday bash. The show, the stage, the surrounding, the sets – just everything matched.
But lets start with the basics…
Q-Dance sold two types of Tickets. A normal ticket for € 83,00 plus a service fee of € 6,95 for each ticket. This ticket granted you access to the Gelredome.
Known from other Q-Dance events, there was again a premium ticket offered. For € 150,00 plus a service fee of € 6,95 per Ticket you were granted access to the event, plus an access to the Galaxy lounge with a premium view at the stage and a free medium e-locker directly at the lounge. Needless to say that food and drinks were served at the lounge from time to time.
So lets get inside
I had a premium ticket and the entrance was – thanks to a very friendly and experienced security – quickly done. Behind the check-in I received my e-locker and a voucher for a welcome red bull drink. After the security check I was allowed take the escalator directly to the VIP galaxy lounge. After I stored my jacket into the e-locker I went my way straight up to one of the Q-Dance merchandise stalls and to stocked up with new merchandise.
A broad selection of merchandise
The merchandise offer was vast again. And as we all know it from Q-Dance – made of a proper quality. Caps, T-Shirts, fans, hoodies and flags – whatever was imaginable – it was offered. I decided to buy a new cap and a T-Shirt. Like a real trophy hunter – there is no event – I return without new merchandise. So I returned to the locker, to put my new trophies into my locker. Luckily the size was more than big enough to add some stuff without pressing. So lets return to the area.
A giant Stage with a long footbridge
When I entered the arena I directly got flashed by that huge stage. A wide stage with lots of ornaments, moving elements, small details unveiled a massive creative energy. In the middle, a huge LED screen in a shape of a circle completed the overall scenario.
To enable the Artists to get in better touch with the crowd, a long footbridge in the middle of the stage was installed. Luckily most of the Artists made use of it, and really got close to the crowd. Funny gimmick was that the DJ booth was actually adjustable and could also move down the footbridge. So the performing artists got encircled while their music filled the hall.
4 towers at every corner
But beside the marvelous stage, it were these 4 towers at every corner of the dance floor that got me really surprised. A metal architecture with the known Defqon-1 soldiers on top of it. Changing illuminations created a super feeling while being on the dancefloor.
LET THE SHOW BEGIN
Team “Early Rave Rebels” (Buzz Fuzz, Franky Jones, Gizmo, Neophyte, The Darkraver & The Stunned Guys)
The night got kicked off by team “Early Rave Rebels” and they did an amazing job. Tracks like “The Age of Love” by Jam & Spoon (Watch out for Stella Mix), The Horrorist “Flesh is the fever” created instantly the early rave feeling. Especially Blade Master’s “One Blade” made the hall go nuts. For sure, many of the younger guests experienced this kind of early for their very first time.
Team “The Qlubtempo Parade” ( A*S*Y*S, DJ Luna, Dana, Pavo and Pila)
Now it was time for the old legends who tremendously formed the early hardstyle years. And their expierence directly electrified the crowd. The team infected the audience with “Evolut!on of Style – Part 1” and the legendary “Motherf*ck (Dj Zany Remix) by Donkey Rollers. The crowd already interacted perfectly and Q-Dance thought big with extras. Confetti shots, pyros were used heavily but still on point.
Team “FUSION RECORDS” with Donkey Rollers, The Pitcher and Zany
One of the biggest higlights was the Fusion Records team. This label has been an elementary part of the hardstyle scene ever since. And so their Artists played the devastating tracks of their period. An absolute highlight was the track “This is who we are” from The Pitcher ft. Slim Shore. The hall yelled a big “wooa” and the atmosphere increased by more than 10 degrees.
Team “BELLA HARDSTYLE ITALIA” with Tatanke, TNT and Zatox
When we talk about the early hardstyle sounds, then there is no way to ignore the influence from Italy. Their memorable sounds shaped a generation of hardstyle melodies. Consequently tracks like Technoboy “Ti Sento” or Tatanka “Lets Rock” (Wildstyle Remix), Zatox “Red Alert” enchanted the crowd with the Italian magic. Wow…
Team “MASTERS OF MELODY PT.1” with Bass Modulators, Frontliner and Max Enforcer.
Time for the trio providing the classical hardstyle sounds. And they left us speechless. Frontliner´s “Halos” or “I am the Melodyman” went straight into the crowds veins. But also Bass Modulators played their unforgettable masterpiece “Oxygen”. But the biggest surprise was when Andy Svage appeared on stage to perform “Gravity”. Now even the last Hardstylesoul understood, that this night would become a pure show run and one of the biggest nights to remember, because Q-Dance was not about to do things by halve.
Team “PRAISE THE RERVERSE BASS” with DJ Isaac, Technoboy and Tuneboy.
There are only few sound elements which gets so strongly linked to hardstyle than the reverse bass. Consequently DJ Isaac, Technoboy and Tuneboy played the best of the best. Masterpieces like their “Digital Nation” alternated up Headhunterz´s “Back in the days” and the beloved “I´m your Deejay” created by Zenith vs Avex. Additional evergreens like “Who is calling” from Tatarola, or the legendary tunes of “Make it Loud” by Blutonium Boy & Michael Enyo Carey seemed that they have never suffered any energy loss since their release.
Team “VIVA HOLLANDIA” with Deepack, Dr. Rude, Outsiders, Ruthless and The Viper.
Skip the rules and genres, now it was time for party and free style. Personally one of my favorite style from time to time, cause it makes things easier. Mr. Puta “Green Stuff”, “”Flitsmeister” by Jebroer and Outsider, or Snelle´s “Reünie”, “Ik Ho van Holland” by Heintje invited the whole hall to sing along with the Artists – and yes – we all did. What an amazing sense of unity.
Team “WORLD OF MADNESS” with Headhunterz, Noisecontrollers and Wildstylez.
So lets move back to the other side of this planet – Netherlands. These three legends represent the Defqon-1 sounds for many hardstyle souls out there. So why not calling this team – hell ya maybe – like the best Defqon-1 anthem ever created “World of madness”. I can barely describe the feelings that came up – all who attended it in 2012 was suddenly back in Biddinghuizen. All emotions and feelings from that day were back. Additional masterpieces like “Year of Summer” from Wildstylez ft. Nils Geusebroek, Noisecontrollers’ “Gimme love from”or the mind-blowing “Destiny” from Headhunterz added the last portion to make the Defqon-1 feeling perfect. My heart made a big jump forward when the first vibes of “Down Down” from Noisecontrollers, filled the air and instantly created several waves of goosebumps. This is Defqon-1 – one blood one tribe.
Team “MILLENNIUM HARDCORE MAYHEM” with Art of Fighters, Endymion, Evil Activities, Noize Suppressor, Nosferatu and Promo.
Time to increase the speed and intensity. After the millennium these sounds characterized the new era of Hardcore. Thus “Demons” by Promo ft. G-Shock, Art of Fighters “Fuck you”, the alltime banger “No Place to Hide” by Evil Activities, the hardcore energy from Endymion and Nosferatu’s “Another way up” made everybody clear – that this kind of hardcore is only for the real die hards. Beats, strong lyrics and memorable melodies where the keys of this kind of Hardcore. Especially “Broken” by Evil Activities & Endymion feat. E-Life is one of this tracks who made the whole hall scream and shout.
Team “SCANTRAXX RECORDZ” with D-Block & S-te-Fan, Devin Wild and The Prophet.
A hardstyle label which got founded in 2002 by DJ the Prohpet, had to be honored as well. Uncountable artists and hits became known thanks to this label. One of the biggest highlights was when the first sounds of “Angels and Demons” by D-Block & S-te-Fan filled the hall. You could have heard a needle dropping – cause the whole hall seemed to stop breathing.
Team “THE LAND DOWN UNDER” with Audiofreq, Code Black and Outbreak.
Since the early days of hardstyle – Australia has been part of it. Legend like Code Black took the chance to play “Pandora” or “Accelerate” which he created together with Atmozfears. Once more tracks that made the crowd singing and clapping and of course dreaming. Aussies melodies from heart. Harder beats followed with Audiofreq’s “Warcry”, Red Planet from Code Black and Bassface by Outbreak. The full Australian diversity got played. Great show
“THE BEST OF POWER HOUR”
Okay, after the serious beats of hardcore and raw – its was finally time for fun again – time for POWER HOUR. A real live happening which got introduced at Defqon-1 in 2014 for the very first time. So similar like the freestyle team, a wave of party tracks got unleashed. While dozens of confetti shots, giant balloons and rubber dinghies got spoiled over the crowd – it was time to move. Zatox & Villain “The warning”, “Jägermeister” or “Tequila” from Da Tweekaz, “Drugs” by Ran-D and Act of Rage, Angerfist and I:GOR’s “Gangsterizm”,” The F-Track” by Showteck, “Robot Gangbang” by Warface and Sefa – those bombs turned the dancefloor into a complete inferno. But wait – no Power Hour – without Zazafront’s “Left Right” . Okay, now my feet where totally gone. But who cares…
Team “DIRTY WORKZ” with Coone, Da Tweekaz, Hard Driver and Psyko Punkz
That label which gets named next to all big ones – and has found its place within the hardstyle sounds that have always been different. With the huge Dirty Workz logo on the LED screen, the crowd went nuts to Coone´s “Showtime 2.0”, Coone´s version of “Pump up the Jam” mixed with TNT, or the killer song “Million Miles” also by Coone. Lucky for me that I stayed the whole set so I could also enjoy “Love this Live” by Psyko Punkz and their “Bass Boom”.
Team “BIRTH OF RAW” with Adaro, Alpha², B-Front, Crypsis, Digital Punk, E-Force and Ran-D
Maybe around 2015 the rawstyle sounds emerged and since then it has formed an own movement. The team was chosen wisely, cause devastating tracks like “Seven” from E-Force in its original version, Crypsis his mindblower “Break down low”, Ran-D’s chart breaker “Zombie”, and “Die Hards only” by Frequencers brought the best raw sounds back. Of course, raw legends like Guns 4 Hire or Chain Reaction would have fit perfectly too, but the next teams where already waiting.
Team “MASTERS OF MELODY PT.2” with Atmozfears, Audiotricz, Keltek and Sound Rush.
Now it was time to prepare for the rawphoric sounds and they came with power. Atmozfears “Reawaking” made crowd again singing, and B-Front together with Adrenalize played their “Electronic symphony”. Highlight was the closing performance by Audiotricz who actually played live on his guitar.
Team “FUTURE HEROES” with D-Sturb, Frequencerz, Rebelion, Sefa, Sub Zero Project and Warface.
Sure the recent hardstyle and rawstyle sounds might have become more melodic and darker. This creates the platform for the future and its good that our all beloved hardstyle music keeps evolving. Tracks like “Psychopath” from Sub Zero Project, “Black Mirror Society” by Phuture Noize or his “Circles and Squares” , B-Front’s melodic “Paradox”, or the Defqon-1 Anthem 2015 “No Guts no Glory” created by Ran-D ft. Skits Vicious or even D-Sturb’s “Legacy” are the current sounds that we all love. This sets got closed by a live performance of “Run From Reality” with Endymion and LePrince.
Team “HARDCORE 2.0” with DR. Peacock, Korsakoff, Mad Dog and Partyraiser.
The nowadays hardstyle sounds might have become rougher – but so has hardcore as well. Bordering the Uptempo sounds – this team moved between classic Hardcore up to Frenchcore with a superior intensity. The crowd was challenged by this last team with “Rewind” by DJ Mad Dog, or Partyraiser’s hit “Sound becomes one”. Last energy cells got surely consumed now. Especially when Dr. Peacock appeared on the footbridge with his guitarist to play “Frenchcore Worldwide”.
“HARDSTYLE TOP 25 OF ALL-TIME”
It was unbelievable, but the night was coming to an end. The last hour had begun. A dark voice announced the upcoming TOP 25 of all-time. Wow…lights went off..and with short mixes of up to 2 minutes per track Q-Dance took us down the memory lane with
- JDX – Ft. Sarah Maria – Live the Moment
- D-Block & S-Te-Fan – Music made me addict
- 2 Best Enemies – Phasis – TBY Romantic Mix
- Headhunterz & Wildstylez Vs. Noisecontrollers – Tonight
- Brennan Heart & Wildstylez – Lose my mind
- Showtek – FTS
- Headhunterz – Scrap Attack (Defqon-1 Anthem 2009)
- Brennan Heart & Jonathan Mendelsohn – Imaginary
- Headhunterz – Rock Civilization
- The Nasty Boz – Angelz (Hardstyle Masterz Cut)
- Ran-D – Zombie
- D-Block & S-Te-Fan & Sub Zero Project – Darkest Hour (The Clock)
- Ran-D – Living for the Moment
- Headhunterz – The Power of the Mind (Qlimax Anthem 2007)
- B-Front & Frontliner – Magic
- Max Enforcer – Lost in Paradise
- Headhunterz & Wildstylez & Noisecontrollerz – World of Madness (Defqon-1 Anthem 2012)
- Headhunterz & Sub Zero Project – Our Church
- Wildstylez – Timeless
- Deepack – The Prophecy
- Frontliner – Symbols (Q-Base Anthem 2012)
- David Sonar – Natural
- Noisecontrollers – So High
- Builder – Her Voice (Headhunterz Remix)
- Headhunterz – Dragonborn
With the last lights, we stood there – not moving. Q-Dance has fulfilled all expectations. The show was epic, the stage honored the 20th. birthday in a proper way, and the whole program was a continuous symphony of our all beloved Hardstyle. Across all teams the message was clear – DONT CARE ABOUT GENRES – we are all Hardstyle. One Tribe – One Blood. Thanks Q-Dance for making those memories possible.