Excision @ PHX Raceway - Basstrack

It wasn’t the San Andreas Fault acting up, but the ground sure did tremble. On the weekend of September 29th-30th, seismic activity was recorded in Avondale, Arizona. Fear not — it wasn’t Mother Nature grumbling, but Canadian DJ and producer Excision leaving an audacious mark with his bass symphony aptly titled Basstrack at the Phoenix Raceway.

Amid the desert, where mirages are commonplace, a real oasis of bass music materialized. The event was a veritable buffet of low end frequencies, serving auditory delights that would have earned Michelin stars if such accolades existed for feasts of the ears.

Excision, the maestro behind the decks, wasn’t the only star in this desert sky. The lineup also featured bass luminaries like the enigmatic Space Laces and Wooli, sharing top billing with dynamic duos such as a legendary B2B between PhaseOne and Kompany. And in the shadowy corners, rising talents like Layz and Emorfik hinted at the future of bass music, weaving their fresh beats into the sonic tapestry.

The story didn’t end with the music. For keen observers, the venue itself offered a subplot worth exploring. The sprawling Phoenix Raceway didn’t just provide the backdrop — it became an integral part of this bass narrative into which Relentless Beats events has woven itself over the past year and a half.

The Phoenix Raceway’s vast expanses effortlessly accommodated the meticulously designed “main stage.” Nearby, vendors set up stalls evoking modern bazaars, while food trucks serving delicacies like al pastor tacos became gastronomic refuges for the bass pilgrims in attendance.

The towering PK speakers weren’t mere instruments. They were cathedrals of vibration, echoing Excision’s legendary wall of sound.

As the vast majority of Avondale lay ensconced in midnight slumber, the Phoenix Raceway was an oasis of electrifying energy. Precisely at 12:45 AM on both nights, Excision took to the stage, challenging the silent desert night with a spectacle of sound and lights.

The first set, in the early hours of September 30th, unfurled like a legend being told for the first time. As pyrotechnics leaped towards the starry sky and lasers sketched ephemeral tales across the horizon, Excision dug deep into his arsenal.

Classics from earlier releases like “Apex” and “Virus” resonated with the night owls, the loyal fans who had followed his journey from the start. But the maestro was full of surprises. He interspersed anthems with IDs from lesser-known artists, weaving a rich tapestry of familiar and undiscovered sounds.

The next night, as October dawned, anticipation hung thick in the air. Those who witnessed the previous set whispered predictions and hopes. Excision’s second act was an entirely different creature. “Onyx” took center stage, its notes echoing the vast desert around them. Somehow, the pyrotechnics and lasers seemed even more vibrant and intricate, as if challenging themselves to outdo the night before.

For those who journeyed through both sets, the experience was akin to reading two chapters of a gripping novel. Each showing proved distinct yet seamlessly connected. As the final beats faded on the second night and the spectacle dimmed, it was clear: Excision had crafted not just a performance, but an experience, an odyssey attendees would carry with them long after the desert returned to silence.

Photos by Alexander Peet

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