Last Friday night, hundreds of eager, friendly faces crowded into Orange County’s Yost Theater for a musical treat. For the first time almost a year, down tempo house sensation Late Night Alumni was slotted for a headlining set with support from local talent DJ Firefly and A Baum. In the last decade, Late Night Alumni have championed their own unique style of downtempo, ambient electronic music that incorporates equal parts electronic production and organic instrumentation. Originally a quartet with Ryan Raddon of Kaskade fame, Late Night Alumni currently tours as a duo – angelic vocalist Becky Jean Williams with John Hancock, a prolific producer, with Finn Bjarnson occasionally making it a trio.
DJ Firefly kick-started the evening with a proper punch and pizazz. A California transplant originally from Michigan, Firefly lit up the night with an eclectic mix of deep, tech and progressive house you couldn’t help but bounce around to. From 10pm to close, the mood was set at a magnificent high as the vibrations from the speakers matched the energy on the dance floor.
Up next, DJ ABaum took the decks, ebbing and flowing through bass heavy EDM bangers – leaving the crowd wistfully wondering how the night would segue into Late Night Alumni.
As Becky Jean Williams‘ ethereal vocals dazzled the audience, I found myself equally entranced by John Hancock’s expert skill with the multitudes of instruments on stage, including an electric piano, violin and a Thermin. After seeing Oliver Huntemann live on a ReacTable a few years back in Los Angeles, I’ve been prepared for almost any instrument to be brought out on stage, but the Thermin was novel – and I was impressed.
Live performances are the blue moons of EDM shows, with a set magnificently strung together with purpose, pride and passion. Throughout the night, Late Night Alumni found a way through their entire anthology of hits, mixing newer tunes from their 5th and latest studio album, Eclipse – released on Kaskade’s Arkade imprint, and of course some oldies but goodies like Empty Streets and 4AM.
For more on Late Night Alumni, DJ ABaum or Firefly, head to their socials –