Spring Awakening Festival: Skrillex, Benny Benassi, Markus Schulz, Claude Von Stroke, Ferry Corsten, and others | Soldier Field | Fairs & Festivals | Chicago Reader
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Spring Awakening Festival: Skrillex, Benny Benassi, Markus Schulz, Claude Von Stroke, Ferry Corsten, and others 

When: Sat., June 16, 1 p.m. 2012
Price: $65-$240
As you know if you've read anything at all on the subject, electronic dance music has lately been enjoying a level of stateside popularity not seen since the 90s—and on that scene, producer Sonny Moore, aka Skrillex, is one of the key figureheads. He's also a lightning rod, so much so that calling him "polarizing" feels like an understatement. Some people consider him an insidious pied piper to the current generation of scene kids—another way of calling his species of dubstep a shallow fad and focusing on his asymmetrical haircut instead of his music—but they seem to be balanced out by those who see him as benevolent and brilliant for helping make EDM as popular in the U.S. as it's long been elsewhere. The music itself, at least to my ears, is fairly inoffensive, so it's hard for me to understand the intensity of the debate. On last fall's Bangarang EP (Big Beat/Atlantic) Moore stacks blocks of familiar pop sounds—concrete-shaking dubstep bass, trap-drum breaks, pop-metal guitar—in a fashion that he might have intended as abrasive, but it turns out to be rather accessible. It's not earth-shattering stuff, but it probably feels great blasted through a sound system big enough to deflect asteroids. —Leor Galil Skrillex headlines the first day of the Spring Awakening Music Festival.

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