Justin Charles

Update:  The venue of the New York City, New Years Eve show can be found here.

As cliché as it sounds, sometimes big things really do come in small packages. That is exactly what happened last night, when the recently voted #1 DJ in the world celebrated his title at New York City’s tiny Lavo Night Club. The line outside the club was unusually busy tonight, filled with a sea of white Armin van Buuren shirts, a mob of people here to support their favorite DJ.

If you’ve been to Lavo, you know it’s quite different from say, Armin’s A State of Trance tent at Ultra Music Festival. The club is extremely exclusive due to a small capacity, as VIP tables line the walls and beautiful girls line the dance floor. There are two LED walls behind the DJ, and two more on the ceiling, providing the same synchronized visuals as a festival set.

As the club slowly filled up to near riot levels, Armin took the stage minutes after one to a huge ovation. There is something about Armin’s sound and the way he mixes that just makes his music sound ‘big’. Have you ever heard someone describe a band like Muse as ‘stadium rock’? Armin van Buuren’s music is like ‘stadium dance music’. It’s meant for massive stages and thousands of people. The beauty of Armin’s music, however, is that once the beat drops, even the smallest rooms begin to feel like a massive festival stage. There were times, like during Armin’s massive collaboration with Ferry Corsten, ‘Brute’, that if you were in the middle of Lavo, you would have sworn there were 100,000 people standing behind you.

While two hours is clearly not enough Armin – he admitted so, apologizing for the short set before the last song – he still managed to pack in as much energy as humanly possible into the brief set, ranging from newer tracks like ‘I’ll Listen’and a remix of Andrew Rayel’s ‘How Do I Know’ from Armin’s latest compilation, ‘Universal Religion’, to classics like ‘In and Out of Love’ and ‘Fine Without You Know’. But the highlight for many was probably the chance to get up, close, and personal with and dance so close to a music icon, someone who we usually see from the back of a festival tent.

Before the last song, Armin managed to confirm one HUGE piece of news that you might want to hear: New York City will be having an Armin van Buuren New Years Eve! With that, Armin busted out an excellent mash up of Coldplay’s ‘Every Teardrop’s A Waterfall’, and Porter Robinson’s ‘Language’, which ended up a perfect way to end a set. One more song of lyrics for everyone to sing, one more drop for everyone to jump, and then he was off – letting the fact that he will be back in two months sink in.

photos by Lexi Lambros