Second Sky Festival started out with a bang. Porter Robinson opened up the entire event with his side project, Virtual Self. His goal was for people to come early and actually watch the other acts. It worked. There was quite the crowd early in the day.
As far as Virtual Self sets go, this one was a bit different than usual. For one thing, it was in broad daylight. Taking place at noon gave this usually light-heavy performance a different feel. It wasn’t bad, by any means, but it did lack a lot of the punch that his UTOPiA SySTEM, or even his CLUBSYSTEM shows have.
He didn’t let that stop him, though, from getting the crowd incredibly pumped up for what was to come, which was the goal.
And there was still the same heart-rate increasing music to dance along to, with one special edition. Second Sky was the first time that ‘Key’ has been played live since the project began. There’s no better place than your own festival to premiere a track, right?
The usuals were played as well. ‘Simple and Clean’ with the breathtaking Kingdom Hearts visuals. ‘Angel Voices’ and even ‘God Rays’ got a chance to shine. It’s always a pleasure hearing that unreleased track.
Even without the usual array of lights, there were still amazing visuals. The most eye-catching were the ones that asked: “Do You Exist?” One that I had never seen before (and I’ve seen Virtual Self a few times now), it stood out among all of the usual color-filled images. It’s fitting, too, being an extremely VS question, but it was one where I just couldn’t look away.
On both days, after he played, Porter walked out and addressed the audience. He expressed how happy he was that people were here, and asked them to give as much energy to the other guests as they just did for him. “I want you to be tired by the time I perform again!”
Though it was very unusual for him to open his own festival, it was a move that was very Porter. And it made the festival that much more special. While it wasn’t the most visually engaging Virtual Self show, it was definitely one of the most important.