by Brandon Lopez
Prospectors! Load up your wagons and get ready to head West, for Gold Rush is upon us September 27th and 28th at the Rawhide in Phoenix, Arizona. Prepare yourself for two days of electronic dance music, house, and hip hop. This festival has one of the more diverse lineups Arizona has to offer and starting this year it’s bigger than ever. In addition to the four stages, we have come to love this year brings the addition of Shady AF Comedy, a hysterical stand-up comedy troupe and the Moonshiner’s Silent Disco featuring some of Arizona’s best local DJs.
Friday the lineup is loaded full of nuggets bringing us Adventure Club, Green Velvet, Shlump and Zhu. But that’s just the beginning of this bonanza of a show. Bust out your gold pans and let’s dig deeper into this lineup. The first of the payload worth talking about is Troyboi. Troyboi is a trap-master who serves up a heaping helping of hip-hop and rap infused dance music. While he is most known for the hip-hop and trap elements of his music where he excels is seamlessly mixing in elements of house, R&B, dubstep, and world music. Next in the pan is Boogie T, a heavyweight when it comes to the wubs. His soundscape has elements of riddim, house, dubstep, rock’n’roll and a healthy dose of southern funk. Boogie T blends live guitar, keyboard, and bass elements throughout his sets. Friday also brings Will Clarke, whose motto is “Do it for the Cuddles.” Will Clarke will leave you swooning over his drop-dead sexy beard and unique take on house music. His musical sound I found bubbly and uplifting at Phoenix Lights 2018, but that’s not always the case. In the most recent “The Barber Shop” Will Clarke showed off a heavier hitting side of himself pouring out big room house more than capable of filling any room.
Goldrush continues on Saturday with a massive hitting lineup featuring Alison Wonderland, BLunts & Blondes, Destructo, Kyle Watson, and VNSSA. It also brings us Ghastly one of Arizona’s most talented DJs. Ghastly has thrown down countless heavy wubs at the Rawhide, and his music gives me the sensation that I’m at an intimate renegade in the middle of the desert. Starting life growing up on a goat farm, before going broke and homeless, it didn’t always seem like Ghastly’s dreams were within reach. Still, eventually, Ghastly got recognized for going hard mixing elements of bass house and dubstep with electro. Two years ago at the inaugural Gold Rush festival, Ghastly had the opportunity to share the spotlight with his parents. There he took them onto the stage for a true family photo, and it was evident that all his trials paid off. That night we saw two of Arizona’s proudest parents. Speaking of talent from Arizona, be sure not to miss VAYN one of Arizona’s rising stars. VAYN is not shy when it comes to mixing across genres. Check out the set below where VAYN opens with piano before going ham mixing in rap, trap, and oh so heavy-hitting industrial wubs.
Saturday we also get treated to DJ Diesel AKA The Real Deal AKA Superman AKA Shaq Daddy AKA Shaquille O’neal. But seriously tho, I’m pretty sure that he’s the only person I know with more nicknames than my first goldfish. DJ Diesel balls just as hard behind the decks as he does on the courts. Skeptical? Yeah, I was too, a basketball player turn DJ sounds like about as good of an idea as a colonel turn chicken salesman turn DJ. Ultra, I’m looking at you. But then I listened and realized Shaq knows how to alley-oop from Rap to Dubstep before dribbling it back down the court to the beat of Trap, Hip-hop, and Bass. As “The Biggest DJ,” quite literally Shaq has enormous shoes to fill and as the only athlete to ever have an album go platinum, it is clear he ain’t clownin’ around.
Before you head out, be sure to check out the stores sprinkled throughout the old western town. In the past, the rawhide has featured a massage parlor, candy shop, and artist merchandise booth. With Goldrush fast approaching be sure to grab your ticket soon and load up your friends for a night sure to pan out to a good time.