Hotstar: Mersiv, Colorado’s Rising Bass Music Star

Pretty, Dark & Loud: Mersiv set out on his 40-date “Out Of Bounds Tour” on Sept. 15. Photo by Trey Sarmento

Anderson Benoit Gallegos can recall his first performance as Mersiv with perfect clarity. He won a contest to open for The Widdler and TRUTH in Boulder, Colorado, after submitting his project’s first track, “Sector” – and had just rebranded after releasing music as Benoit. His new moniker reflected the immersive experience he hoped to provide with his sound. 

“The Widdler and TRUTH, they make deeper dubstep,” Gallegos tells Pollstar. “It’s way more sub-heavy. It’s about the drums and subs hitting you and thumping, and that wasn’t really my style. I had a bit more of an experimental bass vibe to it. I had been playing ‘Beautiful and Filthy,’ which I made with Chill Bobby. I remember closing with that song. We had some video circulating and once people started hearing it, they were like, ‘What is this song? We want to hear it.’”

Prior to launching Mersiv, Gallegos skipped out on his job at a burger shop in Colorado to head up to Electric Forest along with his now-manager, Taylor “Tank” Reed. 

“I told my work, I’m going to this festival, there’s a really big opportunity,” Gallegos says. Though he didn’t perform anywhere at Electric Forest that first year (save for his campsite with Reed), he still described the experience as life-changing. “I remember when we were leaving, I said I’m not coming back until I play here. This is the ultimate goal. And literally within the next summer, we got a slot there. And it was probably one of the most monumental and memorable experiences of my life because it just happened so quickly. We had multiple sets there. I want to say that’s how my career got started because we had so many sets throughout both weekends and it helped get the name out there, made some new fans and showed people what the music’s about.” 

After making a splash his first year at Electric Forest, major acts within the bass music scene began tapping his talents. By 2019, he was on lineups with Zeds Dead and Liquid Stranger. 

He soon set out on a 50-plus date tour in support of “Beautiful & Filthy,” his only break coming during the pandemic, when he finally sat down to write his debut album, Pretty Dark Loud.

In 2023, he’s setting out on a massive bus tour across the United States, with dates in Nashville, Austin, Phoenix, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Seattle, New Orleans and more. The trek – which is booked by his agents at Wasserman Music, Cody Chapman and Zach Berkowitz – comes in support of his sophomore record, Out of Bounds, due to be released on Oct. 20.

“I’m really excited for Grand Rapids, Michigan,” Gallegos says. “I love playing there because it’s so close to Electric Forest and the scene is really open-minded. I feel like I can play whatever there. I can play heavy music or slow, down-tempo stuff. I can play hip-hop or older dubstep that’s from the 2010-2012 era and they’re very receptive to it. I feel like that’s what I want the experience to be for people. I can’t control those experiences, but what I want for everybody is that they can enjoy all of it.” 

Gallegos is also looking forward to returning to the West Coast, as he didn’t stop by while out for “Pretty Dark Loud.” He’s anticipating playing 45 East in Portland, Oregon, as the last time he performed in the venue it had a crowd of around 50 people. 

“We didn’t have any production, I think we had a projector on a little white screen,” he says. “And now we have this whole setup. We built some fabrication to make a border around our stage and make it look like an alien spaceship. And we’re bringing a PK Sound System with us. We’re really trying to create an audio-visual experience that’s memorable and people will take home with them… I’m really excited to return there and see the difference in the turnout.” 

Earlier this year, Mersiv sold out his first headline performance at Red Rocks Amphitheatre on April 6, grossing $469,060 and selling 9,250 tickets. He puts the performance at Red Rocks up among his list of legendary nights that stand out to him the most. Mersiv stuck around the market, playing The Mission Ballroom the very next evening, selling 3,028 tickets and grossing $119,514, and Belly Up Aspen in Colorado the day after that. 

As he remains out on the road, Gallegos shares he’s finding his groove. 

“Whenever I have a break for a show, I feel a little rusty,” he admits. “I guess people don’t notice, but I notice it myself. I’ll feel a little rusty if it’s been a month since playing a show. … We’re already on our third week [of the tour]. [Over the weekend we] started in Wichita, then Kansas City, St. Louis, then we went to Atlanta for Imagine Festival. By the third or fourth day, it felt super easy. When I worked on my Imagine set, it felt a lot more natural. I wasn’t worried or stressed. It flowed.”

Gallegos confesses he sometimes feels anxious prior to shows, especially when he hasn’t been touring more consistently.

He says, “I notice these things go away on tour because we’re doing so many shows back to back. You have more practice.” 

Gallegos finds it easier to perform now than his first show in Boulder. He has a larger catalog to pull from, the majority of his sets filled with his own original song that help with the flow of his performances. Gallegos says it comes along more naturally, finding his home on the stage

“It’s been pretty insane in Colorado,” he says. “We went from opening a super small show to Red Rocks earlier this year for our first headline. It’s gone pretty well so far in the last six years.”


Booking, Wasserman Music
Zach Berkowitz / [email protected]
Cody Chapman / [email protected]

Management, Mind Warp Management
Taylor “Tank” Reed / [email protected]
Tynan Conroy / [email protected]

Public Relations
Franz Hilberath / [email protected]