Thievery Corporation, Little Dragon, A-Trak, Dillon Francis ring in NYE 2013 at Sea of Dreams

Sea-of-DreamsPhotos by Mike Frash // Written by Molly Kish //

Sea of Dreams //
Bill Graham Civic Auditorium – San Francisco
December 31st, 2013 //

The Sea of Dreams’ 14th annual New Years Eve celebration took on a new theme and venue for their 2014 transcendental gala, VibrantSea. Playing upon the theme of “energetic realms of felt experience,” the festival relocated from its previous residency to the heart of San Francisco, taking over the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium for nine whimsical hours to ring in 2014.

Presenting a challenging shift in spatial dimensions, the new venue helped to curate a very different experience than most have come to expect with Sea of Dreams festivities. In previous years, attendees have had to navigate through the crowd constraints of a shotgun floor plan, but the Bill Graham Civic allowed for revelers to flow freely amidst its ample space and side rooms. Enhancing the overall experience and motif of the evening, movement amongst the masses maintained a comfortable fluidity throughout the auditorium and allowed for ample time to immerse in the entirety of the VibrantSea experience.

Little-Dragon

Swedish synth pop fourtet Little Dragon got the venue stirring after an opening set by DJ Jocelyn on the main stage. Pulling tracks from their entire catalogue, this one-off performance was the perfect way to usher in the multitudes of fans and first time observers. The soulful electronic grooves of this opening performance was highlighted by familiar favorite “Ritual Union” and a striking dub remix of their 2011 hit “Little Man.”

Next up on the Main Stage, Thievery Corporation brought their unique blend of world music, electronica and hip hop to the party. Ramping up the eccentric auditorium with a full band ensemble and rotating vocalists, Rob Garza and Eric Hilton brought the largest crowd of the evening together under the floating lanterns, inflatable sea creatures and the eventual sea of balloons that dropped over the dancing masses at midnight. Their set began with diva-led revelry and led to hip-hop driven songs after midnight.

Thievery-Corporation1

Thievery’s hip-hop driven post-midnight jams transitioned nicely into late night heavy hitters A-Trak and Dillon Francis, who went back to back with bass-pounding performances. Scheduled directly after one another, the EDM giants treated the crowd to a rare collaboration, sharing duties as selector while vibing off the other for the next choice.

The two competitively battled as rap prodigy and NYE Mezzanine headliner Danny Brown made a debaucherous late night appearance that sounded a bit like spent karaoke. But Brown’s presence brought new life to the cavernous Civic Center, so witnessing Danny Brown perform with A-Trak and Dillon Francis was icing on the cake of a fantastic evening.

Sea of Dreams offers exotic, crazy-sexy NYE in SF

Sea-of-Dreams5By Mike Frash //

Sea of Dreams //
Bill Graham Civic Auditorium – San Francisco
December 31st, 2012 //

Sea of Dreams NYE 2013, coined “Lunasea,” offered four stages of live and electronic music, interesting chill-out areas in a tea room and burlesque room, and the best group of revelers you can find in San Francisco on New Years.

The scene that’s created at the SF Concourse Exhibition Center at the end of every year jolts you out of the routines and rigors of life, and enables you to take a journey if you choose, if just for one night. The people that made their way to “Lunasea” seemed to be a mix of Burners and High Sierra Music Festival goers – meaning that most everyone was kind and in a sharing mood.

Sea-of-Dreams

Gogol Bordello – Lunasea Stage: East Hall

Gogol-Bordello

The crazy-sexy music choices at Sea of Dreams are another reason why many people choose this event for New Years. This year, gypsy-punk troupe Gogol Bordello stormed the main stage for the NYE countdown show.

Gogol Bordello’s stage presence, energy and WTF awesomeness is probably only matched by Die Antwoord, but Gogol Bordello brings the crazy with five people taking the spotlight at points. Eugene Hütz is the lead presence, and he doesn’t disappoint.

Gogol-Bordello

Gogol-Bordello

Gogol-Bordello

Gogol-Bordello

Shpongle’s Quixotic Masquerade – Lunasea Stage: East Hall

Shpongle's-Quixotic-Masquerade

Shpongle premiered his “Quixotic Masquerade” at Lunasea 2013. The electronic music pioneer joined forces with performance art troupe Quixotic to create a show that was sexy and exotic. The first half hour featured only the art troupe Quixotic, then at 1:10am Shpongle appeared from behind his multi-colored DJ platform

Shpongle’s sound is decidedly rooted in traditional & world music sounds, and a live violinist accompanied the digital music for the show. The experience was sexy, weird, and exotic – perfect for Sea of Dreams.

Shpongle's-Quixotic-Masquerade

Shpongle's-Quixotic-Masquerade

Shpongle's-Quixotic-Masquerade

Shpongle's-Quixotic-Masquerade2

Trentemoller - Galaxsea Stage: West Hall 12:05am

Trentemoller – Galaxsea Stage: West Hall

Glitch Mob - Galaxsea Stage: West Hall 1:30am

Glitch Mob – Galaxsea Stage: West Hall

Pumpkin  - Galaxsea Stage: West Hall 1am

Pumpkin – Galaxsea Stage: West Hall

Realistic Orchestra - Galaxsea Stage: West Hall 9pm

Realistic Orchestra – Galaxsea Stage: West Hall

The Scene at the Basscraft Stage

The Scene at the Basscraft Stage

The Scene at the Lobby Stage

The Scene at the Lobby Stage

Sea-of-Dreams

Sea-of-Dreams

Sea-of-Dreams