City Bisco 2013
Didn’t get enough Biscuits at this year’s Camp Bisco or you didn’t make it at all? You should have been at City Bisco. This September 27th and 28th, the Disco Biscuits returned to the Mann Center in Philadelphia for their own two day festival. On top of the Biscuits, Big Boi, Method Man & Redman, Shpongle, Emancipator, Kill Paris, Treasure Fingers, Kilowatts, and Gigamesh joined in the lineup. This was my first City Bisco experience and my first time at the Mann Center; I honestly had no idea what to expect. In my head I pictured a Camp Bisco plopped into the middle of the city of Philly. Although it was nothing like this, the Mann Center is located in a park to the north of the city center. I ended up being quite surprised but certainly not disappointed.
Most of the crowd there seemed to be there for one reason only: to see the FOUR Biscuits sets that weekend. The majority of attendees didn’t even arrive until after the sun set over the Philly skyline. When the Biscuits played, no one else performed and the entire crowd gathered at the main stage. With each night and each set, the Biscuits killed it more and more. The last set of the last night they laid down a cover of “Disco Inferno” and for the first time all weekend I saw people actually dancing with each other instead of just grooving and facing to the stage.
As expected at a Biscuits show, the stage lighting was completely out of this universe and blew my mind. Other than the Disco Biscuits sets, some of the favorite acts of the festival were at the smaller stage. It was great to see a back and forth between electronic music and bands. When talking to a few people they said the same thing: Horizon Wireless nailed it the first day, bringing in deep tech-house set that moved seamlessly into smooth, jazzy trance. Twiddle followed up later that night completely switching up the pace and sounds. Other acts on that stage included Lee Foss, Pimps of Joytime, Space Jesus, Pigeons Playing Ping Pong, Cosmic Dust Bunnies, Risky Disko, and Suspense. The variety at that stage, throughout the day and into the night, kept the crowd very pleased.
The main stage was stadium seating, a photo pit in the front, followed by a VIP section, ticketed seating, and then lastly a lawn area. All weekend the Mann Center staff made it a priority to keep people in their assigned area. This was a bit of a buzz kill to the vibe. Everyone under the pavilion was expected to stay in front of their seat and moving around and moving closer was not allowed. Dancing in the isles or moving around anywhere that was not in front of a seat was strictly not allowed and strictly enforced. Security was extremely tight with this. Anyone who wasn’t VIP could not be close to the stage or in the first two sections. Method Man and Redman, who performed on the first day in between the Biscuits sets, went so far as to walk out into the crowd, performing their entire set from an unassigned platform in the crowd. On a brighter side the staff did a great job of keeping the venue clean, constantly cleaning up after everyone. The weather that weekend kept everyone in good spirits and people were blown away watching the sunset over the Philly skyline with the music in the background. Everything seemed to be a success and well organized. As you left you could hear everyone already talking about their plans for next time.