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EVENT REVIEW: Luminosity Beach Festival 2016 reviewed by DJ and producer Alex Wright

Luminosity Beach Festival took place from 24-25-26 of  June 2016 and was an absolute success with positive comments flooding the social networks from trance fans who expressed their deep satisfaction and gratitude to Luminosity for organising such an unforgettable event. Our guest contributor and 1mix radio resident Alex Wright was lucky enough to attend the event and we requested  to devote his time and write down for our readers his own view of the Luminosity Beach Festival from the point of Dj & producer and not the music journalist or the ordinary trance fan. Here you can read what Alex Wright has to say about Luminosity Beach Festival who has attended the event for the  first time. We wish him next year to be added to the line up of the event and we are very sure that the trance fans will adore his performance so Luminosity crew better keep him in mind and book him for the 2017 event. Don't forget his radio show Trance Encounters that is streamed on 1mix radio every 1st Friday of every month with great success and big growing following.

 Luminosity Beach Festival 2016, Review written by Alex Wright

Alex Wright enjoying himself at Luminosity Beach Festival
After years of hearing about how special this festival is, I finally decided it was about time to buy a ticket for this year’s event. With early birds costing 115 euros each, I went for it and booked flights and accommodation early on to get the best deal. With a massive, diverse line up ahead, the excitement during the build up to the weekend was immense. Despite a flight cancellation and re-booking, I arrived in Bloemendaal just a few hours later than intended on Thursday night before getting up early in time for Suncatcher’s opening set on the mainstage at 12 noon on Friday.

After getting ready and doing the morning shop, I took a train from Bloemendaal to Zandvoort to find the festival, and from asking a few locals and bar staff where Beach Club Fuel was I found out I had to walk for quite a while down the seafront ‘til I reached the site. After queueing and being given a Luminosity 2016 wristband, Hawaiian-style garland, and a free set times programme (which I think was an excellent idea), I entered the main stage and got instantly hooked into the lush, euphoric sounds of Suncatcher. Transylvania Cowgirl and his remix of Fire Sign were the set highlights for me along with the Aly & Fila remix of Ferry Corsten’s Beautiful.

He was soon followed by Chris Metcalfe by which time I had gone to check out the bar area and meet up with some producer friends including Bjorn Hodel, Temple One, and Suncatcher himself, however I caught Chris hammering out his banging bootleg of Super8 & Tab’s Helsinki Scorchin’.

Temple One at Luminosity Beach Festival
I met up with producer friends David McClelland from Amos & Riot Night, Allen Watts, Chris North, and Mark Leanings whilst enjoying Dreamy’s set on the second main stage who played his emotional, uplifting track Shooting Star which was recently released on Always Alive Recordings.

Dreamy at Luminosity Beach Festival
Once Dreamy’s set had ended we all headed over to Area 3 for Re:Locate Vs Robert Nickson LIVE which despite some CPU problems due to overheating was very impressive, especially when hearing tracks like Out There 2016 and Spiral 2015 being played meticulously well live via MIDI keyboards. I also got to meet producer / DJs James Cottle and Daniel Kandi down here too before heading back over to the main stage to be Pat Butchered by man of the moment Will Atkinson.

Will Atkinson at Luminosity Beach Festival
It was hilarious to see people with Pat Butcher masks on and the crowd chanted, “Here we, here we, here we fucking go!” on the drop which became a recurring theme throughout the weekend. Once his set had come to an end I went to get a drink and some pizza with their seemingly expensive token system before checking out Stoneface & Terminal who pleasantly surprised me.

Stoneface & Terminal at Luminosity Beach Festival
Their set was full of rhythm and electric basslines which I love and was perfect for grooving out on the dancefloor, at points the tracks became more stripped back and driving which really gripped me and was much better than some of the happier stuff that appeared in their set in my opinion. As the sun began to set on the beach, I headed back over to the second main stage for Alex M.O.R.P.H. and Menno de Jong and did some ping-ponging between there and the mainstage as Jordan Suckley and Sean Tyas were both playing making it difficult to prioritise. The main highlight of the first night was Shugz playing in Area 3 as his selection was on point, finishing up with classics like the Ferry Corsten remix of Clear Blue Water. After a taxi ride home and a better night’s sleep.

Alex M.O.R.P.H. at Luminosity Beach Festival
I managed to get down to the site again this time via taxi for about 2 o’clock. This unfortunately meant that I would miss Gai Barone and Orkidea, but I managed to check out Daniel Skyver’s set and the last tune of Airwave’s. I really liked how organic and flowing his music sounded which was refreshing to hear outside of the standard trance pallet that I was hearing most of the weekend.

On the opposite end of the scale was Standerwick playing on the main stage which I stayed at for a few tracks but decided to grab a drink and watch Simon O’Shine instead in Area 3. After this I headed over to the second main stage to see Daniel Kandi who played many great tracks including his new collaborations with Markus Wilkinson and Joel Spencer, ‘Open Road’ and ‘ID’ respectively, as well as his remix of Sun In Your Eyes which had a well-deserved “sit down and jump up” moment during the build, and the classic track ‘Tranquility Base – Oceanic’, and my track ‘Golden Gate’.

After getting a beer and watching the Northern Ireland Vs Wales game I went to see John Askew playing some banging tech trance tunes including the unreleased Chop Salad which is a must have for me in the future.

Following on from John on the main stage was John O’Callaghan who brought an unbeatable atmosphere as the sun was going down and Bryan Kearney afterwards who began his set with the mighty Squelcher by Will Atkinson & Jase Thirwall and once again dropped Pat Butcher which caused plenty of damage within the huge crowd.

Over on the second main stage closing proceedings was John 00 Fleming who was a must see for me. The music he played was relentless, enigmatic, and refreshing as it didn’t conform to any typical structure and flowed so naturally at a breakneck pace. I’m very glad I chose to see John’s set and I would love to experience an extended or open to close set from him in a great club atmosphere.

After the second main stage closed down for the weekend, the main stage carried on for an extra 30 minutes as Kearney played plenty of classics including his mashup of Robert Nickson – Spiral and Masters & Nickson Feat. Justine Suissa – Out There (Acapella) and The Vengaboys – Kiss (Airscape Remix). This was an epic end to the second night and geared me up for what was going to be a full day of predominantly classics being played tomorrow.

Union Jack
As my friend Jonny is a big fan of Union Jack and credits them as the act that got him into electronic music, we headed down to the festival for about 1 o'clock on Sunday and caught the end of Jam El Mar’s set who played the 1993 Jam & Spoon classic Follow Me. Shortly after, Union Jack came on and played their set full of Platipus classics which was nothing short of amazing, I got to meet Simon Berry and Jam El Mar backstage afterwards which was a huge bonus.

After being squelched out by TB-303s I got another beer at the bar and overheard Temple One playing Golden Gate once again as Daniel Kandi came on stage to play a back to back with him in Area 3. It was great to have a short chat with them backstage as well during Super8 & Tab’s massive classics set over on the main stage. All the great tracks were played including 7 Skies – Caffeine, Irufushi, Mercy, their remix of Amsterdam, Cre8, First Aid, and a new 138BPM track of theirs according to Daniel Kandi.

I also had a good chat with Sasha Vatoff from Binary Finary before he went on and played huge classics like Gouryella and 1998 (Paul Van Dyk Remix).

Following on was Kai Tracid who brought a great, distinctive oldschool sound to his set and Judge Jules who dropped many bombs including Storm – Storm which is just a timeless dancefloor destroyer in my opinion.

Paul van Dyk at Luminosity Beach Festival 
Eddie Halliwell was on next who in my opinion messed around with the tracks a bit too much using the beat repeats and fade cuts in almost every 4 bars of a track, although Paul Van Dyk received a warm welcome back afterwards. I’m so happy to say that I have seen one of my biggest influences play a set and I really appreciate how dedicated he is to the very scene that he helped create. Closing things for the whole weekend on the main stage was Indecent Noise who blew everyone’s heads off with a masterful Hard Trance classics set which included Cosmic Gate’s ‘The Wave’ and many other gems which I had never heard before. Listening to Hard Trance from the past also made me notice how some modern producers have taken influences from it and applied it to the current trance format to evolve the genre further which to me is quite interesting.

This was a great end to a mammoth weekend and although I didn’t get to the after party due to being low on euros and having a flight the next afternoon, I went home feeling well and truly baptised into the world of trance and progressive.

Credits for photos
and from individual artists at their facebook pages.

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