December 31st, 2013 – Nashville,Tenneesee
I know you’re out there. I can feel you. Anything is possible…
Welcome to 360.
360 is an idea you may never have really thought deeply enough about until you walk into Bridgestone Arena to see your favorite artist on the planet steer a spaceship through both time and physical dimensions. We are in for serious blast off!
NYE 360 is one of the most intimate recurring rituals of experimental bass music producer Lorin Ashton and his dedicated following. The setting is filled with 10,000 humans all in one big circle around the stunningly large production conceptualized by the long touring live act Bassnectar and his extremely talented production crew.
It’s wild to say that a show this big could be intimate, but the way the fans all circle the DJ booth keeps the energy level and enthusiasm of all participants constantly swirling. It’s not like your typical event where the stage faces the crowd and the crowd faces the stage, with energy moving back and forth.
This layout allows energy to intertwine infinitely, with no true beginning or end. We stand with close friends and new ones alike, everyone vibrating at the highest of frequencies.
A longstanding adage suggests that you are the product of the 5 people you hang out with most.
We, along with thousands of other dedicated Bass Heads, do everything we can to be sure that Lorin is a part of our inner circle. We jam his albums, create Nectar inspired artwork, hang with friends, relive memories and create new ones. Each day flowing to the smooth soundtrack of the drawn out, deep subsonic sine frequencies.
Bassnectar has morphed for well over a decade into a platform that fully demonstrates the vastness of possibility within music as it engulfs you completely. Lorin’s continuous growth as an artist and a live show, as well as Bassnectar’s evolution as an organism and an ecosystem has Bass Heads around the world constantly yearning for more.
What makes this Bassnectar idea so palpable?
I love when people ask that question, for it has no simple, straight forward, or consistent answer and depends upon whom you ask. Therein lies the beauty of the art, the science, the culture and the journey that are parts of Bassnectar. Each of these elements multiplies the intensity of one another, and all stem from one common denominator, love.
This story spans one year, one wild-style METHOD cycle around the sun. Each day contributes to enhancing the conduction of the energies of the universe.
Follow us as we share our experiences throughout 2014 with the one and only King of the Sound.
This is a love story.
Prophecy speaks of a coming of Rainbow tribe of people, ones that wear their hair long and always paint their faces. This community, the ones we are lucky enough to call “our crew,” is full of such people.
Unique individuals from different spiritual, mental and geographical backgrounds, are drawn together like electrons around a nucleus. We are all called to something we love. Our passion brings out the artists in each of us, as we all get decked out for these peak life moments that are Bassnectar shows.
We’ll pick up this story with our 2013 year-end together and our 2014 beginning happening consecutively with neighbors and friends in Nashville, Tennessee.
This being our first Bassnectar NYE 360 experience, we had no idea what to expect. The stage setup, sound system and two-hour set from Bassnectar exceeded every expectation we had for what a live show really is. It was such an unbelievable experience. Bridgestone was a soundscape unlike any other on this planet. The evolution of the set was nothing short of breathtaking as Lorin captained the Bass Ship.
Everyone was cherishing every second of the experience.
Near the end of the set, Lorin grabbed the mic and jokingly asked the crowd, “You guys ready for 1 more trick?” Thunderous screams fill the venue as he brought Zion-I out for a live rendition of the “Teleport Massive” remix.
We 360 you 45. Now we’ll see who keeps the party live.
If we weren’t hooked before this event, you better believe we were afterwards. Seeing as many Bassnectar shows as possible was no longer a question. We were all in.
One of the toughest things to stomach during his 13′-14′ NYE show was Lorin announcing a time off the tour circuit to recenter and make an album.
However, with the release of his 10th studio album Noise vs. Beauty, Bass Heads were reassured that it was all well worth the wait. Though it may be difficult at times, patience is key to being a dedicated pursuer of passion. You must be sure to give an artist time to grow and develop.
Lorin continuously improves the Bassnectar experience in every way.
Whether it was waiting several months to see him, or following him on the journey that is his live show, we knew he would reward us well with surprises and unexpected delights along the way.
The time off was rejuvenating. It gave us time to soak it all in and really absorb the magnitude of what we had actively encountered that fateful NYE evening. After Bassnectar’s NYE 360 Experience, we had to know more.
Let’s take a plunge into the Science of Sound:
How is it that the technology of today communicates the message of music to our physiology? Let’s begin with our olfactory system.
Our five senses include hearing, seeing, smelling, tasting and touching. Sound itself essentially only appeals to one of those senses: hearing.
Loudspeakers move air molecules in the direction of our ears in order to vibrate our eardrums. A beautiful illustration and explanation of sound waves is demonstrated by these informative animated graphs.
Simply put, a speaker is able to broadcast complex wave forms by moving a magnet through an electrical coil. This magnet is attached to a speaker cone in order to move the air molecules and vibrate ear drums. In the case of Bassnectar’s sound system, they are able to vibrate all the cells of our bodies due to the magnitude of it’s size and capability. As a fun take home experiment, bring a balloon with you to the next big show you attend. Get one with an LED and take it to a Bassnectar show for bonus points.
Watch, feel, and play with that balloon as it is being vibrated by the same energy as your body. Pretty cool huh?
What separates Bassnectar from the rest of the touring acts today is the attention to detail that he and his acoustic team puts into matching the perfect amount of speakers to the space they are filling. They are able to assume any size stage, room or field, and swallow it whole. Since it is music we’re talking about, acoustics of the space we are listening to have a major influence on the way the sound is heard and felt. Bassnectar and Co. do everything they can to ensure they have the right system for the right experience.
The beauty of Bassnectar’s sound system is the spectrum that it covers.
Human hearing spends a range of about 20 Hertz (Hz) to 20,000 Hz. Lorin and his acoustic team have chosen to pair with sound pioneer and genius Meyer Sound. These speakers cover a range wider than nearly any other speaker system and are able to do so with unbelievable clarity and control.
For a very informative video on the sound rig that Bassnectar and team use, check it out on YouTube.
Humans perceive sound primarily in two dimensions.
This is why you might be initially confused when someone calls your name from a balcony above you. We percieve sound left and right (X), front and back (Y), but cannot really decipher the height (Z) of a sound. High frequency tones are directional and require much smaller speaker cones to project them. These smaller speakers take much less energy to move. As an example, a note on the midi scale of C8 (the highest note on a piano) has a frequency of 4186 Hz. The wavelength for this note is about 3 inches long.
Bass frequencies are much longer. A note on the midi scale of C1 has a fequency of 32.7 Hz and a single cycle of that wave form is 34.5 feet long.
Therefore, the speakers themselves must have more surface area, and speaker cabinets more volume in order to push the air molecules to broadcast that frequency.
More air = more power.
This is why you will see much larger speaker cones for sub frequency notes. The subwoofers that reproduces the deepest frequencies are often 18″ and above in diameter. These speakers are massive and can weigh up to 300+ pounds! If you ever count the number of these subsonic elements Bassnectar has, you will find that he carries more than almost any other touring act out there.
The Meyer 1100-LFC, in particular, has the ability to be arrayed in a cardioid pattern. This means they place one facing backwards (away from the crowd) and another stacked on top of it facing forward (towards the crowd) .
Through a scientific feat called phase alignment the acoustic team is able to, essentially, double the sound forwards and eliminate the sound behind the sub. This is genius because low frequency tones are generally omnidirectional (transmitting in all directions), whereas high frequency tones are directional. This acoustic trick of frequency alignment essentially allows the entire PA system to be directional, pushing the most energy possible towards the crowd.
20 double bins up front, Cozza frenzy.
So what about sight?
It is said that 60% of everything you have ever learned or experienced is because you saw it.
Unlike the olfactory system, the visual system perceives the world around us in 3 dimensions. The layout of the stage allows for so many visual possibilities. Bassnectar’s production is an utterly stunning design and allocation of resources, even when half of everything is off. Plug it all in, turn it all on and it’s time to escape to another dimension.
Next level acts understand that simply having speakers in a dark room may not fully communicate the idea behind the song.
This is where massive lighting rigs and, in Bassnectar’s case, custom LED screens come into play. Since the roll out of the Ultra Nerd Server (UNS) that Lorin and team put into place for his 2013 Immersive Tour, the live show has achieved an incredible amount of synchronicity. Hands on, custom cut and designed video times perfectly with the music, flowing from track to track and clip to clip. The UNS assigns a specific video clip for each audio clip.
This way, when Lorin drops in a splashing snare, a water droplet lands directly on a mushroom in perfect time with the song (in the case below).
Lorin’s shows are jam packed full of energy that comes at you from every angle.
His teams – acoustic, video, and lighting – are all a tightly knit crew that work hand-in-hand, day-after-day, venue-after-venue, in order to provide the best possible experience a human can have at a live music performance. This congruity is one of the many reasons that so many humans follow Bassnectar around the country.
Though Bassnectar has now transformed into a road crew consisting of 5 semi-trucks and 5 tour busses, these days are a far cry from the DJ Lorin days where he was in the venue helping set up the sound and beginning to sculpt his vision for what was soon to become the Bassnectar we know and love today.
This growth comes from a constant fueling of the flame from Lorin. His unwavering dedication to improvement and all out debauchery caters plenty well to long haired head bangers of all types. 2015 sees him, his crew and his fans filling massive arenas and selling out 3 nights of Red Rocks in a few short days.
There is an immense technicality to what is happening.
There are miles of cables, hours of physical stage setup, and even more hours of musical preparation and arrangement. All of that work culminates into an experience that is different for every single human it envelopes. The technical part is often not at all what it’s about. Technology is necessary to paint the picture but it isn’t the picture itself. It is about growth, persistence, and unwavering dedication, from Lorin to fans and back; it is about magnetism.
Um, I’m dropping science, dropping science.
May 30th, 2014 – Red Rocks – Morrison, Colorado
It had been nearly 6 month for us.
Red Rocks was our first show since New Year’s Eve. The fact that it’s almost exactly a half way point of the year can’t be coincidental; it’s as if we’d come part of the way. Lorin has been quoted saying that he is “inspiring the committed.” Well committed this community is as fans make the pilgrimage from miles around to revel in this historic venue.
Red Rocks is a true treat for Bass Heads, and the Bassnectar crew goes all out for this event.
Red Rocks is one of the most beautiful music venues in the world.
The towering rocks and natural sloped amphitheater make doing anything there majestic. You can feel the energy pulsating from the ground and the unique sandstone that has been molded over years by the elements. The clean, clear Colorado air that is a joy for your lungs and your body to breath and stirs new life from the inside out.
Add the best live act out there, on a completely new and revolutionary stage setup, with 10,000 eager Bass Heads there for the opening of 2014 for Bassnectar to the masses and you’ve got one unforgettable moment in history.
Talk about energy.
Everyone and everything was buzzing, and we could already tell the wait had been worth it before Lorin even took the stage. I have never seen a stage production adapted so well to an existing structure. It was as if it had been molded into the rocks themselves. After opening up night one with F.U.N., taking us on a galactic visual journey, Lorin started things out with a proper head bang. Let’s get it 2014!
It was like we saw him yesterday, yet on this day he had a new story to share.
Red Rocks seemed as if it was a re-invitation into the life and lively hood of a Bass Head, with the passion and commitment to bass music being eternal.
Night one of Red Rocks saw many new unreleased tunes seamlessly laced with classics. The adventures you go on during a Bassnectar set are completely otherworldly, to say the least.
It’s wild how you can remember specific moments from each show. Sit back and reminisce. Remember why you love Bassnectar.
Man we freaking love it.
This first night far beyond anything we had ever experienced prior. It felt amazing to be fully immersed by the sound waves, a light show and the Bass Head community once again.
Red Rocks is a true family, communal, “mind blown,” moment.
We were feeling incredibly thankful on the walk out. There’s always a sense of completeness for us. We’re full up with wonderful memories, visions and friendships, as we depart the venue by causally stolling down the cascading landscape.
May 31th, 2014 – Red Rocks – Morrison, Colorado
Night two began with one of the most beautiful natural phenomenons.
A double rainbow touched the horizon of the rocks and plains, so we knew we were in for something magical. Climb up the stairs, and climb in to the space ship, back to the Matrix, Matrix, Matrix…
True to tradition, when Lorin took the reigns for the evening it was heaven for all of us.
Back out on the Rocks, in the beautiful open Colorado air, it was an alluring evening with a near moon full beckoning to the freaks.
I can be a freak. I can, I can be a freak.
This show was an opportunity to kick off new collaborations with some incredible artists.
“You and Me” seemed to be a beautiful anthem dedicated to the fans that have, and will continue to live on as a part of Bassnectar.
This show seemed to be a peek into what had been happening in Lorin’s life over the last six months.
His preparation was completed and he stepped up to the helm, welcoming us all to come on inside and see how the next seven months will be together. His music forms an opening gesture, to dive in deep.
A unique Part of Lorin’s craft of live mixing is his ability to reach back into time and pull any part of his past forward into that moment. We’re never sure why, but it’s simply because Lorin found it most appropriate for that present moment, geographical location, or crowd energy level.
Each song has its own implications to him (Can you picture what Window Seat off of “Cozza Frenzy” might mean, or where it came from?). They also have implications to the fans. This synthesis creates a beautiful, interwoven and unforgettable message in the minds of many.
Every single person has a different connection to the live show, a different strain of electrical impulses tied together in synapses bursting with visuals of butterflies.
Add a visceral vibration you would have otherwise never associated with that creature had you not witnessed “Butterfly” remix live and you’re almost guaranteed to think differently about life. These shows are a true opportunity to open your eyes and your mind.
Sometimes it feels as if Lorin has discovered a way to tear through the space time continuum.
The two nights of Red Rocks were utterly unforgettable, and we cannot wait to journey there with some of you in 2015!
June 7th, 2014 – Wakarusa – The Ozarks, Arkansas
The third show in 7 days. A 12 hour car ride, a reunion with old friends that flew into Little Rock, and more exciting strings of events brought us to the mountain, where wilderness meets music. We had the car packed and our spirits high as we journeyed accross the country to Arkansas. How many of are familiar with this view?
Some call them slackers, I’ll call them opportunists.
Upon arrival to Wakarusa, our excitement was still buzzing from Red Rocks.
We were blown away by Lorin’s performance on the mountaintop. He reduced the night into a cloud of mist.
Following a two night smash out at Red Rocks is no easy feat, but Lorin surpassed every expectation we may have had.
We love that he gets better with every passing moment. He opened by thanking the sky for the beautiful weather, then dropped in “Loco Ono” right away and had the crowd going bonkers. He then closed his overtime set with a beautiful mediation, one that was meant to channel your focus inward to a moment of awareness and being.
This was a new side of Bassnectar we had gotten a taste of at Red Rocks, but this night it was extra special. The difference between the opening and closing of that set really demonstrated the flexibility he has as a musician and an artist. He made a giddy commented about how massive we were.
Said Lorin immediately after snapping the family photo:
That’s a good one, I can feel it.
You’re damn right it was Lorin. Thank you.
September 27th, 2014 – TomorrowWorld – Chattahoochee Hills, Georgia
Another several months have passed, anxiously awaiting the next time we get to hang with our friend Lorin. This occasion was the shortest distance we had to travel to see him.
Let’s jump in and let the music take control.
Lorin brought the heat to the Mythical Frames stage at TomorrowWorld.
He was sure to shatter the stereotypes that DJ’s don’t mold their mix. One of the most brilliant moments was when he mixed out of “Freestyle” into a “Move for Me” remix of Kaskade & Deadmau5. It was a very slow, sensual moment, and for us, a welcomed change from the tiring “4 on the floor.”
We love Lorin for his versatility as an artist and desire to constantly search for and introduce new ideas into his shows. Since he is constantly evolving and discovering new music, we are always eager to join in this journey.
TomorrowWorld was a magical place and Lorin dealt us an extra special episode of spaceship love.
October 4th, 2014 – Bass Center VIII – Madison Square Garden – New York, New York
Bass Center VIII brought thousands in to the big apple from all across the county. We all dove into the deep underneath the city at one of its most famed entertainment venues.
One of the most memorable moments was when he mixed an edited version of “Follow My Instructions.”
This song paired with the visuals had people going crazy in entirely new ways. Then, as he gated that track, he drop in the intro to “Open Your Eyes,” and we were shown pure mixing magic.
This is one of our favorite 1-2 punches Lorin has ever thrown.
December 31st, 2014 – Bridgestone Arena – Nashville, Tennessee
Here we are at the end of the year, time ticking slowly away as we head towards Bridgestone Arena for our second NYE 360′ show.
This last year has stretched our idea of what is real and what is not on multiple different occasions. Among new revelations we’ve learned that music has incredible scientific and spiritual power, and people will go to great extents to gather around large sound systems.
Over this past year, and through the stories Lorin tells, strewn with clues to follow, we’ve heard many constructed sound bytes that have been truly unique. Those details may never be felt again.
This is not so much saddening as it is enticing.
We are drawn back to Bridgestone in Nashville and have learned that it’s important to prepare ourselves to be the best sponge that we possibly can. Bassnectar shows broadcast incredible amounts of energy that we must prepare to feel. This is our true pregame. That and face painting of course.
We had ended up in the same place geographically, but no where near the same place mentally or spiritually.
We were so different. It’s incredible to witness how Lorin had evolved throughout the year as well. His evolution was apparent as soon as he took to the decks.
The setting was very familiar. This time, we brought a crew of over 30 strong from several different states to the arena in downtown Nashville.
Hey guys, we found something. It’s AWESOME. Want to come check it out?
There are few moments where it felt so good to say yes.
To say yes to travel, yes to friends, yes to this beautiful life where we get to follow our favorite artists across the country; These times are something we never regret.
We were back in Bridgestone, all in a conjoined circle pulsating with energy and beauty. One of the most memorable moments of the evening was just before Lorin took the stage, the red LED screens fading in an out, like a pumping heart,the beat resonating with the eager fans.
The sound this year was “pulverizing,” to quote the man himself.
Because of the scale of these loud speakers, Lorin has literally shaken the house in every venue he has played. He even set off an earthquake alarm in Greensboro last year. For the 2014-15 NYE 360 Experience in Nashville, I counted at least 50 double 18″ bass bin subwoofer cabinets. This combined with 8 linear arrays with various fill speakers provided the best sound I have ever heard and the heaviest sound I have ever felt.
Not many other humans have a 500,000 Watt footstep. This is honestly one of the biggest reasons we make sure to get out and see Bassnectar, cause no one else does sound as well as he and his team. They zoom across the county and the world with an incredibly scaleable production and are professional beyond measure.
We finally got to feel the long time favorite “Blow” live, with it making it’s video debut at this show (as far as I know). Mix that into “Heads up”, and we were in a field of sonic bliss. Throw in a live rendition of “Butterfly” with the lovely Miss Mimi Page and a slew of new music, and you have one excellent way to close out 2014 and ring in 2015.
Lorin’s dedication to his fans shone through when he played a montage of all of the family photos from 2014, to the soundtrack of “Open Up.“
For more on the meaning of this song, check out the Linear notes from Noise vs. Beauty.
You could tell how much time Lorin spent putting that set together.
His dedication to perform a live, evolving show every single time is incredibly admirable. People say it often: “Nectar hustles harder.”
Freak in the morning. Freak in the evening. Ain’t no other Freak like me that’s breathing.
Yes, Lorin. Yes.
Coming Full Circle
Our 2014 journey lead us through 7 beautiful states, with well over 5,800 miles traveled in pursuit of what we believe to be the best live music experience one can subject their self to.
Our 365-day tour around the sun gave us several chances to pile on, pack it in, and roll it out with as many friends as we could to each show. Each show was a journey. Not simply the show itself, but also every single moment in between. We are always sure to bring as many friends as we can since the more loved ones you get to share each experience with the better. We hope that many of you have also had amazing experiences. You are all beautiful and dedicated!
Bassnectar has adapted a community where all the shapes and sizes of humans, from all corners of the world are welcome.
All the daring freaks come to experience something together that is unlike anything else on the planet. Many people plan their days, weeks, months and years around the concert schedule of Bassnectar. We are no different. We’ve learned that we resonate wonderfully with anyone else that claims Bassnectar as one of their favorite artists.
Bass Heads do it better than any other group of enthusiasts.
They are such kind welcoming people. Everyone involved in the experience is contributing in a totally unique way; Everyone sharing love and appreciation for the moment we are in. Bassnectar is one force that drives many boys and girls crazy. Gentlemen, let me tell you, if you find a lady who will get down with you at Nectar shows, you’ve got something amazing.
Girls twerk. Women headbang.
Come to a show to discern Bassnectar for yourself.
Everyone experiences it differently. Everyone is drawn in for a different reason.
The low wobbles of Bassnectar’s subs massage you from your eardrums through your core to your feet into the ground and all the way back up.
These frequencies pass through thousands of unique individuals each year, helping to change and evolve the culture. Each person gains their own epiphanies and realizations, many of whom share them with dearest friends all around.
When we can’t be at a show, we’ll throw Bassnectar mixes in our headphones while we work or dump CDs into cars that are tattooed with the bass drop. This music has adopted a form of intellectual media, stimulating Bassnectar even more. Whether it be artwork, music or stories, each person who has experienced Bassnectar live and in his fullest communicates their own beautiful interpretation with the outside world. In this we express our freedom to create media that is locally owned, locally produced and relates to the folks that are consuming it.
Hopefully this free media will help further not only Bassnectar, but the music industry as a whole. This community of inspired individuals are the kinds of people you want to surround yourself with.
For Bassnectar shows – especially with the scale that they have grown to today – thousands of people gather who otherwise may not have a single thing in common, save their love for the deep, dirty bass lines.
We all vibe together so strongly that Lorin can’t help but feel the energy we throw back at him, stirred by the energy he throws out to us, and it just goes round and round.
Bassnectar fills our sensory experience up in nearly every aspect.
He pumps out hundreds of thousands of Watts each show.
Strictly professional, multidirectional, style aimin’ straight for ya ears…
However the energy he receives back has no measurement, no “known” quantity. There is no tangible proof that it existed, yet everyone in that crowd, arena, amphitheater, room or field will talk about those moments of bliss, of pure energy, filling up our beings for years to come.
Bassnectar is more than just a musician.
It’s more than just a concert. We hope that if you haven’t experienced this magic in it’s fullest, you’ll come out to join us one day to experience something new. We all seek to find understanding in life, and Bassnectar has become a very deep well to drink from.
For those dedicated ones among you, we’ll see you out on the road.
Peace, Love and Bassnectar.
To future smiles and sunbeams with all of you.
2 thoughts on “A Chronicle of Bassnectar: One Spiritual and Scientific Orbit Around the Sun”
” Gentlemen, let me tell you, if you find a lady who will get down with you at Nectar shows, you’ve got something amazing.”
^ She really is amazing ;-0
A couple that Nectar’s together stays together.
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