If there’s one thing you can always expect when attending a Dirtybird event, it’s the guarantee that you will be moving your feet and dancing your ass off the whole time. In my opinion, the whole Dirtybird crew sits at the very top of tech house game. For their Las Vegas stop, they brought out some of their very best–Dateless, Eats Everything, Ciszak, Shiba San, Justin Martin, and of course, Claude VonStroke.
The gates were open at 1:45 p.m. and the show was to go on until midnight. I thought that 10 hours of house music could get a little stale after that long, but I was plain wrong. As the day raged on, the Dirtybird all-stars kept bringing in weirder and fresher beats that easily kept everyone on their feet. The eccentricity peaked with Justin Martin, my favorite Dirtybird, who seemed like he was pulling banger after banger out of some unreleased treasure chest. After dancing for over eight hours, I had to spend most of daddy Claude’s set sitting down to rest, if I was ever going to make it back to the hotel. I was, however, compelled to stand up to my exhaustion and bust a move every few minutes, just because it was that good.
I’m always super impressed by any Dirtybird show. I go in with huge expectations and never end up being let down. I will say, though, that the setup of the venue left a bit to be desired. One of my favorite things about Dirtybird is how they started. What began as homegrown parties in Golden Gate Park has now developed into their own full-sized festival, the Dirtybird Campout. I was really curious on how they would pull off a party in Vegas and keep that same “homegrown” feeling, solely because of the setting.
This would be my second time in Las Vegas, and after spending another outing on the strip the night before the show, I was starting to see through the money-burning facade that it really is. Vegas was starting to seem like the antithesis of the perfect Dirtybird location, but I kept an open mind as me and my friends made our way to the venue that Saturday afternoon.
I wasn’t sure what to think once I got there. It looked like they had put in a lot of effort to make the venue look like some kind of park/beach setting, but it wasn’t really pulled off that well. The dancing area was covered in layered astroturf, and the back was covered in “sand,” which was nearly gravel. There was also an above-ground pool, which was great if you needed to cool off, but seemed to only add to the artificial feel of the whole thing. This was my first ever Dirtybird BBQ, so I’m not sure how the space compares to others, but this one did feel a bit too confined for my taste. There were times where I would have liked to escape the music for a bit, but that simply wasn’t possible, as there weren’t many other places to go.
Those are all the gripes I had with the setting. Everything else was simply on point. The food was spectacular (shout-out to whoever cooked up those mac & cheese egg rolls), and the bathrooms were great for what they were. I never had to wait in a line. The sound was also booming. I could hear the very end of Claude’s set being played from blocks away as me and my crew walked back to our hotel. I have to give props to Collective Zoo, the team that put on the show, for doing their best. I can’t say it would be a great location for the Dirtybird BBQ to return to, as it just didn’t feel like the right spot for it, knowing their history. Everything else aside, I had a great time, and can’t wait to see what Dirtybird has to offer for their Campout festival.
Dirtybird BBQ Las Vegas: 7/10