Around 5am on October 24th, reality struck real hard, ADE is over!
The Monday blues couldn’t sing any louder. But, like all good things, they periodically come to end, and clear way for a bigger and better year ahead. With that said, let’s pull out the looking glass and reflect on 2016’s wondrous event.
Amsterdam, a friendly man made water metropolis, hosted music industry representatives, revered artists, and avid festival goers worldwide for the 21st consecutive year. Creatives came together to spark the juices and engage in fruitful panels, spreading the love of their work and then finally getting the chance to showcase their talents through performance. ADE Festival organised a whopping 450 feature events with 2,200 artists in 115 clubs and venues within the span of 5 days! To throw a little more icing on the cake, the Netherlands was rated one of the happiest countries to visit by National Geographic. Happy people make happy dance floors. Transportation? Well Amsterdam is “one of the most bike friendly cities in the world.” These designated bike lanes made venue hopping super easy. Don’t want to ruin your hair? Try metro, bus, tram, or Uber.
Before all the chaos commenced, I tried to squeeze as much wellness into my regimen as humanly possible. The Divine Movement, an event spearheaded by superstar DJ Gina Turner, could not have been more fulfilling and invigorating of an experience. Gina and Tim’s motions of breath and posture, blended with a touch of music, realigned my body and mind for an enduring week of dancing. The festival community could definitely use more awareness to wellness and it looks like Gina and associates are up to the challenge. Namaste! We also had a surprise guest with none other than birthday boy Laidback Luke. Can you imagine doing a downward dog with the double L right next to you?
The anxiety of making the right decision and not dealing with FOMO on the first day is indeed a festival goer’s nightmare, especially with such a vast selection of shows. Who could I trust, oh wait, of course: In Trance We Trust at Wester Unie. On entry, lines were well organised and security was friendly and welcoming. Hello trance fam! Three rooms were filled with cosmic treats, in your head psy beats, and a bunch of bodies moving their feet.
Highlight: John O’Callaghan and Menno De Jong
Night two held much anticipation for Adam Beyer’s annual Drumcode party at the holy grail – the Gashouder! In conjunction with Awakenings, premiere techno festival curators who brought the techno masses together for five flawless nights, the Gashouder served as a safe haven under the techno conclave. The Gashouder should be considered the capital building of techno, a hub that brought together the thickest vibes and faces from all across the world. This venue is absolutely jaw dropping with raw concrete slabs that bounce bone rattling frequencies like no other dome chamber in the world.
From the fireworks, to the 3D screen visuals, to the gigantic centered disco ball, to the knowledgeable crowd, to the rest-area bleachers, each crevice of the Gashouder felt alive and connected.
Highlights: Adam Beyer, Dense & Pika, and Rocco Veenboer (founder of Awakenings)
Finally, the Lost & Found party thrown by Guy J was quite the spectacle in itself. Based inside the elegant Stanislavski, the crowd was unbelievably energised and chugging. Eyes were closed and you could tell that people were in their happy places. The boiler room temperatures were gruelling at first but made for a fun night. Many Israeli producer / DJ’s were at the helm, yet the standout was none other than Lost & Found’s up and coming star, Khen.
Highlights: Luca Bachetti, Guy J, Khen
The venues were all top notch. You could find yourself partying on a crane, in a dockyard, or even under the Rijksmuseum. The drug policies were safe and effective, approaching the issue through educational measures. Each venue would have warning signs in relation to dangerous substances going around, spreading awareness and self-reliance. Purchasing food and beverages was facilitated at larger venues with a token system that made lines smooth and hassle free. All in all the whole city was immersed in a flood of music and camaraderie, it’ll be hard to wait for next year!
(The article has been written by our contributor Sam Siam)