It’s got a certain whiff of pub talk about it. That last-orders genius idea: “We should all get tickets for Glasto next year”… “We should start playing badminton”… “we should totally team up and do an outdoor dance festival on the banks of the Clyde around the grounds of the Riverside Museum”…
And so it came to pass. Hot on the heels of the successful SGW3 events, relative newcomers Electric Frog and techno stalwarts Pressure teamed up for hopefully the first of many outdoor dance festivals. On the Clyde. Around the grounds of the Riverside Museum!
One of the first things you notice is that it’s disconcerting being at such an event in the daylight. It’s strange that I can just about see my office when I look in one direction and it’s stranger that I can see the history of car and bike manufacturing when I look in the other.
What a site. Set over 3 stages with just the Glasgow skyline and the iconic building itself for company, I can’t begin to comprehend even begin to imagine the amount of organisation that must have gone into this 3500 sell-out event, and that’s before you even start on the line up.
While Josh Wink is busy with consciousness facilitations at the front of the museum, Jamie XX is nailing some hipster ravers round the back. A deep, minimal opening gives way to funkyglitchydubsteppyness and his own band’s remix of ‘You Got the Love’ thrown in for good measure. If you’re wondering, I wasn’t sporting neon chino shorts, a gold string-vest and a stupid haircut; this stage is also where non-hipsters queue to get drinks tickets. On that note it must be said that there are some operational teething problems. It’s almost certainly easier to get a beer in the Peruvian Cornton Vale than it is at this event, and certain corridors are as crammed as… the Peruvian Cornton Vale, but as the sun starts go down on this unique setting, the billing as a “nirvana for electronic music lovers” starts to shine.
Well-kent cane-mongers Optimo and Slam feature heavily, the former having their own compact stage and the latter stretching out their set on the Pressure stage to cover for a Nina Kraviz no-show. Other acts from further afield that could locate their passport include Michael Myers who mixes up techno with a Jackin-house, carnival-ghettlectro, balle-funk set. To the best of my knowledge I’ve only made up one of those genres.
An attempt to get to the comedy stage on the Tall Ship has to be aborted because the queue is a joke, but it’s another example of the organisers trying to do something different. And that variety is reflected right across the bill: solid no-nonsense techno (Len Faki), turntablist legends (J-Rocc), live jazz-electro-wibble (Underground Resistance), slightly nonsensical techno (Boyz Noize), all adding up to a pretty incredible event without the slightest hint of the EDM-mudbath-bloodbath of Avicii at Bellahouston Park.
Quality stuff but thirsty work so we slope off back to the pub before the afterparty starts to sound like a good idea. “Is that last orders? Right. What will we do next year…?”.