Graves provides entry level EDM experience

Photo courtesy of Sable Valley Records

Going to an EDM concert may not be how most people decide to spend Valentine’s Day, but watching DJ/producer Graves perform on Feb. 14 was definitely more exhilarating than the typical dinner date or rom-com movie binge. 

The concert was held at Aisle 5, an intimate venue in Little Five Points that, while small, is still capable of accommodating a high-energy audience. Atlanta was the third stop of Graves’s “Far From Here” tour, which began in Portland, Oregon on Feb. 7 and will visit various cities throughout the United States and Canada until concluding in San Francisco, California in mid-March. 

Joining Graves on his tour is fellow DJ Hex Cougar, who is acting as an opener to prep the crowds for Graves’s performances. Songs included in Graves’s two-hour-long setlist included his newest single, “I’m Fine,” “Arcus” featuring EDM producer RL Grime and “Glass Hearts,” for which Graves was joined by his opening act, DJ Hex Cougar.

Graves is a stage name for Christian Mochizuki, a Hawaii native who studied audio engineering and began his musical career working at local sound studios and clubs. He entered the musical spotlight in 2010 with his contributions to the sound engineering of Kanye West’s album “My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy,” which earned Mochizuki a Grammy. 

Following his collaboration with West, Mochizuki banded together with some other producers to form a group called “OOF”. 

The group attained the opportunity to perform at the 2014 Electric Daisy Carnival Discovery Stage in New York, thereby establishing Mochizuki’s success as a DJ. After deciding to follow a solo career under the alias “Graves”, Mochizuki’s style of “EDM Trap” earned him acknowledgement from some of the biggest names in EDM, thereby causing Mochizuki’s popularity to skyrocket. 

Graves released his tracks on music platforms such as Sound Cloud and Spotify, ultimately leading up to the debut of his first EP, “Hilo,” in 2017. After playing at several music festivals, Graves embarked on his own tour beginning in early February of this year.

Overall, Graves’s performance was perfect for a first-time EDM concert-goer. Although the venue was considerably smaller and the lights and visuals were not nearly as impressive as those of other EDM concerts, this allowed for an experience that wasn’t too overwhelming. Additionally, the crowd was lively but not too wild, which also made the show more manageable for entry level EDM concert-goers. 

Despite the show’s simplicity in comparison to more elaborate concerts, even seasoned EDM fans enjoyed the performance, which was made apparent by the mosh pit that erupted in front of the stage.

Not only did Graves put on an electrifying show, but he also took the time to meet with fans afterwards, showing his appreciation by carrying on conversations and posing for pictures. Ultimately, the appeal of a Graves concert lies in his ability to utilize his music to energize a crowd, an ability which clearly comes from how passionate he is about his performances and his music.