It was in January that I discovered that Elrow was coming to Lisbon for the first time. After almost two years of fascination and curiosity over their parties all around the world I finally get the chance to experience one night of wonderland and pure magic in my own city. I couldn’t really explain how that made me happy… Knowing that they were betting in the prosper electronic scene of Portugal’s capital to make one of the Psychedelic Trip shows of their world tour 2018. It was more than just being extremely proud – I wanted it to be successful, I wanted them to think ‘what the fuck… Lisbon is the place to be!’
Two months passed by and I was exploding of anxiety… Let’s be honest: I didn’t think it would have the dimension that it ended up having. The lineup was colossal, showcasing both Elrow and LX Music original artists, as well as names like Paco Osuna and Paul Ritch that do not need any introduction.
The night of 3rd March is freezing cold on the riverside. At 12am the line outside Centro de Congressos is endless due to the great organization and adequate security. My heart is pumping frantically as I get closer to the entrance. On the second stage, I hear Miro blasting Octave One’s Blackwater intro in the moment I cross the door. I don’t even need to explain you the importance that this song has in my love affair with this culture. Everything within me is attracted to that dance floor, so I just run to dance and thank him for playing such a meaningful track on the perfect timing. I’m starting to feel like tonight is gonna be unforgettable…
I enter the main room and my body is invaded by a wave of warmth, of delirium, a feeling of home, a sensation of calling to the jungle – this is it! The moment when I am undeniably a part of this family. the moment when we together make magic happen… It’s indescribable!
Around me, thousands of people dance and sweat, dressed in all the colors of the rainbow, glitter, props, an authentic nest of psychedelic birds. A rowdy trip to the front line gives me the best of Elrow’s magic – revellers from all over the world gathered under a neon ceiling in the search for 10 hours where they can disconnect from the rush that is the world outside and just dance happily with their eyes closed, under the wings of Rowgelia. Protected by techno, by the confetti, by the constant joy of being surrounded by absolute madness.
Imagine the perfect harmony between the beats of Paco Osuna, an overwhelming scenario, a tireless audience and an efficient organization – this is Elrow, this was Elrow Lisbon, this is what I wished it would never end.
Until 8am sharp, the dance floor trembles nonstop and I find myself talking to people coming from opposite parts of the planet in the line for the toilet. An incredible spectacle, a unique and harly repeatable energy, an admirable passion for every detail. I don’t even feel like real life is just outside those doors anymore… Last night went by so fast I didn’t even see it. The console is off, the doors are opened, the lights come in and the dancefloor is empty. After a psychedelic trip like this, I refuse to think that someone left the Congress Center with indifference…
by Maria Santos
All the photography credits go to Pedro, who absolutely captured the essencial spirit of Elrow!