March 4, 2013
On February 23rd, the AMP!D party brand brought one of the most versatile up and coming dance music artists to Tampa. Hot off the decks from his genre-blending, magnificent Essential Mix, my expectations were high for the 22-year-old Londoner named Mat Zo. The mood of the night was set by APM!D’s two resident DJs, Basomatik and DOCO, who never fail to get the energy flowing early. While Basomatik inclined himself towards more pop friendly mashups, DOCO made the ground tremble when he played Kill The Noise’s trap influenced, Mosh It Up. Shortly after, Mat Zo hit the decks to deliver a set so versatile that it allowed me to truly understand why his popularity is quickly rising.
Around 12:45am, the lights dimmed down for Mat Zo to take the stage and play what would be a 2-hour extended set. Wearing a t-shirt and sweatpants, he took off his glasses, set them aside, and got into his comfort zone. Mat started out with Shade Sheist’s Where I Wanna Be, right before switching to the funky goodness of E Samba. Although his set was only beginning, he didn’t waste any time mixing things up and dabbling into other genres. After his disco introduction, Mat moved into a more progressive and bass sound with tracks such as GTA’s People Boots. His coverage of the musical spectrum didn’t stop there as he went on to skillfully combine a slew of genres such as house, mid-tempo, electro, and trance.
Mat’s pace of teasing and switching from one track to the next was truly remarkable and although his set wasn’t very fast, it never became boring. Rarely did a song play for more than a minute or two before the sound of another could be heard rising to continue enthralling the dance floor with pure musical bliss. For the most, the highlight of his set came when Mat closely strung together Botnek’s remix of Easy, his own track Mozart, and his club mix of The Sky. After Mat Zo ended his set and the crowd chanted in unison, he came back to the decks to close out the night with an encore.
Mat Zo wasn’t lying two years ago when he said he would turn electronic dance music upside down with a forklift and a wrecking ball. His productions are elegantly delightful and the versatility of his live set charms the ear of even the most conservative music enthusiast. Being able to seamlessly combine the whole spectrum of dance music genres, Mat Zo is one of the most underrated artists of his generation. Even so, I have faith in his talents and I’m confident that his upcoming album will grace the ears of the world in the same way that his set delighted the dancing souls of Tampa.
Check out the full photo album from the night here.
Photos & Words By: Michael Maurer