Review by Emily Kaufman
Dub step pioneer Rusko performed in front of a packed house at Buffalo's Town Ballroom on Feb. 14. The show was sold out for weeks, making the energy and expectations high, as couples and friends crowded into the theater for an alternative Valentine's Day celebration.
Rusko, also known as Christopher Mercer, is a dub step record producer and DJ from Leeds, England. Dub step is an electronic dance genre that originated in south London. Buffalo's Town Ballroom was the 11th stop on Rusko's 2012 college tour.
Opening for Rusko was Swaggle Rock, formed by DJs DCal and eSBie. The duo established the night's high energy and spurred an onset of manic dancing on the main floor. Their fun and upbeat music greeted the mass of people that began to engulf the Ballroom.
Next on stage was DJ Medison, who continued to hype the crowd. Performing in a heated atmosphere, Medison cast his shirt off into the growing audience and carried on his set, grinning.
Once Rusko was ready to perform, the Ballroom seemed to have grown to accommodate the sea of spectators. Energy levels skyrocketed as Rusko began his remix of Kid Sister's "Pro Nails." Hands flew instantly into the air, as bodies and heads nodded along uncontrollably.
Before the show, Rusko tweeted, "Extra pumped for the show tonight @ Town Ballroom now ... Adrenaline based set tonight." His energy and adrenaline after hitting a local ski resort earlier in the day fueled the night's show.
The impeccable transitions between tracks and Rusko's obvious passion stimulated the raging crowd for the duration of the night. Despite some sporadic issues with his CDJs, also known as turntables, the show was flawless -- even as Rusko drank straight from a bottle of Grey Goose.
Aside from his smashing the bottle of vodka, the high point of the evening was undoubtedly when Rusko performed "Everyday," his Netsky remix. Expectation overcame the crowd and the entire Ballroom erupted once the bass dropped, motivating everyone to sing and dance along. The electricity that seemed to move through each person in the crowd remained as Rusko continued his set.
The Mad Decent producer and DJ left the audience captivated and literally breathless. The excitement was still booming when the crowd unraveled and left the Ballroom. Overheard immediately and from every direction were positive reviews of the overwhelmingly revitalizing evening.
Rusko's second album, "Songs," will be available in March.