Z-Trip @ Axis/Radius|2/2/13
Whatchu know 'bout Z-Trip?
In all seriousness, if you asked this question to any of your local peers, I'm willing to bet that nine out of ten will know the ubiquitous DJ name, eight out of ten will know him personally, or claim to know him personally, from that one time at (insert DJ night or music festival name here) as of current or from way back in the Phoenix day.
I'm also willing to bet that every single one of the people familiar with Z-Trip (or Zach Sciacca) will have nothing but words of praise, worship, or just down right respect for this "hometown hero" who has undoubtedly been a forefather of the art of turntablism.
How do I know this?
Because I asked this very same question, days before attending last night's show at Axis/ Radius, and it's exactly what I got. So does the "legend" hold up? Yeah. What I got from the show didn't disappoint at all musically, but the logistics of navigating Old Town Scottsdale made me physically want to hurt myself. Arriving at a prompt 10:30 p.m., it took close to an hour to find parking and get around the masses that flooded the streets.
In all fairness, I anticipated a mess, and a high turnout of Phoenix Open day-drunk fuckers, but never in my life have I seen a venue so packed with mini-skirt wearing ladies and dudes chasing after them.
It is, simply put, not my scene. Luckily, the music made it tolerable, and it was easy to recognize the portion of the crowd that was there for the music, crowing in front of the DJ-booth where Z-Trip and his esteemed openers, Tommy "Tricky T" Laurie and Dusty "PicksterOne" Hickman, showcased their absolute love of mixing records. The joy they have doing their jobs is palpable, and the trio's tight-knit local homie bond seems impossible to break, endearing enough to make the button-ups spitting their hopeless game ignorable.
As Z-Trip owned the night with his masterful mash-ups of everything from classic rock to 90's grunge to underground hip-hop, the pure quality of sound bouncing around this venue was incredible. You can't be too upset regarding the crowd's personal style or let your club-going biases get in the way of noticing what was happening: the attendees dancing their dicks off to beats and bass. From behind that DJ booth, where Z-Trip read the crowd and planned his next move, it all made sense. It didn't matter who was there; his job was to rock them, and he did.
Critics Notebook: Last Night: Z-Trip at Axis/Radius in Scottsdale.
Personal Bias: I hate clubs and typically hate EDM. But I only hate EDM because everyone can't be Z-Trip. It's damn near impossible to hate a pioneer of a musical trend. Especially when it's a pioneer who knows his old-school hip-hop, and is a damn likeable, good-natured, friendly (Phoenix-bred) dude.
Overheard in the crowd: "Lets roofie some chicks tonight," said a bro to his gang of bros (I'm not joking, and god knows I wish I was).