Ghouls and gals from all over campus gathered in the Thunderdome last Saturday to party at University of California, Santa Barbara’s annual Delirium concert. This year, students turned up to the beats of the DJs Underbelly, Morpéi, and headliner Tchami.
Martin Besso, famously known as DJ Tchami, is a Parisian DJ and music producer who has collaborated with the likes of Skrillex and DJ Snake.
Former Gaucho DJ Underbelly, class of 2017, kicked off the night. With hands raised at each major beat drop, the crowd couldn’t help but bop along.
As DJ Underbelly spun some original tracks, such as “Blindfold Vasectomy,” he also featured remixes of songs such as “Beez in the Sack” by Nicki Minaj and Doshy & Conrank, Disclosure’s remix of “You and Me,” a song originally by Eliza Doolittle, and one of the crowd’s favorites, “M.A.A.D. City” by Kendrick Lamar.
Although the crowd moved naturally with the beats, many people enjoyed remixes they recognized and sang to as they jumped and pumped their fists.
This remained true for the next DJ as well, Morpéi. After the hype from Underbelly, the crowd cheered when Morpéi entered the stage, hungry for more music. The Bolivian artist said nothing during the performance and let his music speak for him.
Morpéi kept the crowd energized as his set featured song remixes like “Cola” by CamelPhat & Elderbrook, interspersed in a repetitive algorithm of beats that played extensively through his set. The music vibrated the air.
Morpéi’s unique percussion manipulations and drawn-out anticipation before each heavy beat drop kept the crowd’s energy up despite the virtually never-ending bass-line.
As the set ended, the crowd threw glow-sticks as Morpei played his last song. The last song featured the phrase, “Thank you, Thank you, Thank you, Thank you… and fuck you,” which sent the crowd into excited hysterics.
As midnight approached, the fog completely covered the stage. Colorful lights illuminated the fog and created an eerie, otherworldly feel, perfect for Halloween.
Then, DJ Tchami entered. Dressed in his signature preacher’s collar, Tchami’s silhouette in the fog made the crowd go wild.
The crowd was so immersed in Tchami’s set that they had no regard for room, danced, and bumped into each other, cheering “woot woot” as the music continued to blast.
The set featured remixes of well-known tracks such as “You Know You Like It” by AlunaGeorge, as well as Tchami’s original songs, like “Summer 99,” “Adieu,” and “Promesses,” featuring Kaleem Taylor, adding a more deep house” effect to the performance.
Tchami is known widely as a “pioneer of future house music.” “House music” is electronic club music characterized by the repetitive beats of drums and cymbals. “Future house” draws from the electronic dance styles of the United Kingdom and the genre “deep house,” which is “house music” that features a jazzy, soulful feel.
At some points during Tchami’s performance, the fog became incredibly dense and the lights turned bright white, outlining Tchami’s priestly figure in the haze. This image, mixed with lyrics such as “only God knows” and Tchami’s praying positined hands depicted music as a religious experience for the artist.
The beat moved and swayed the crowd, with familiar song phrases such as “rock your body,” to which the crowd obliged. Even the occasional security guard tapped a foot or swayed to the music.
By the end of his set, Tchami raised his hands in thanks once again, saying, “My name is Tchami, God bless y’all” which earned one more ecstatic cheer from the crowd.