With the weather taking a definite turn this week to wintery conditions, i thought it time to reflect on the festival season just past. As newcomers (or old timers returning) it is taking a while to figure out what festivals are still running and would be most appropriate for our music. And getting our foot in the door as it were. The sesaon has been kind to us in that respect as we managed to play at a number of local events. The first of which was Biophilia.
This is a newcomer to the festie bill with this being it’s 2nd year. This time it was held at Moke lake just outside Queenstown. A stunning location (where isn’t in this area?!) where we quite often go for bike rides and walks. So we felt right at home! We didn’t quite expect to be playing in the woolshed though! The inclement weather was deemed too risky to continue the festivities outdoors so a handful of energetic volunteers swept out the woolshed and prepared it for the dinner and evening entertainment. True Kiwi style. It worked though! Awesome space which i have a sneaking suspicion may turn into a regular venue. We played the dinner set which went down well as it was a very listening audience. We performed quite a few from our new album “Beyond” starting with a more mellow vibe rounding off with a couple of livelier ones once people had digested their food. The vibe of this event was very much holistic with a focus on Yoga and well being. Family friendly with a no alcohol and drugs policy. What? You scream. Yes indeed. There was dancing well into the night with Mad Hallelujah Tribe playing a 3 hour set. People had so much energy from all that stretching throughout the day and not smothering themselves with booze that they were going for it! Egged on by a number of core members of the Ecstatic dance class held in Queenstown every Friday. Really good experience and really well run. Looking forward to next year!
Next up we had River Range. It’s in it’s 3rd year of existence and is held in Cromwell. Really good set up and despite the wind being fairly disruptive, the sun finally came out and led into a fair evening. I was playing this one with the Paul Shipman band. The weather on stage was pretty challenging with my bow flying in my face a couple of times. So i hid beside the drums…. Nice festie. Quite an eclectic line-up so hope to get Choice in there next year;)
Unfortunately, due to bad weather, the Waitangi day festie in Queenstown “Reggae in the Park” was cancelled. Gutted! Hopefully they’ll book us again for next year!
Kingston beats was next with me playing again with the Paul Shipman band. Couldn’t really get any further from Biophilia vibe. This was a proper mash-up! A scorching day with very little shade and a majority Irish crowd was a recipe for….an awesome day. Yes there were a few casualties but the organisers did their best to supply free water and ice. And a water slide! Us Irish have pretty fair skin! The line-up was fairly rock and indie based with a change to dance music later on, mainly house with a bit of techno in there. Great craic altogether. This was fairly well organised (Might be a good idea next time to set up a few shady spots. And a few more food stalls) with a great sound system provided by the infamous TomTom productions and a great venue.
Completely different again was Autumn Arena. This was a 4 day event and despite the wet start to the weekend we made the most of it. It was pretty mucky on arrival but as the weekend wore on it became more do-able. Wellies or boots a must for this one. See https://www.choicerhythms.com/loop-artists-nz/ for a full write up. The line-up for this one was excellent. Right up our street with lots of Loop artists and original music. Lot of exceptional musicians at this one. The set up was awesome too with a natural arena for the main stage with silks set up at the back and a lovely cafe area with a big firepit in the middle. Around the corner was a tribal area and workshops with the Dub Tub hidden round the back. The dj’s playing there were awesome with a fair amount of drum’n’bass going on. Just how we like it!
So, roll on next year. We’ve made some good friends and nice contacts for next years’ season of festies. Looking forward to exploring this awesome country through festies and gigging. And by that stage we’ll have the new album ready for your ears!
In the meantime have a listen to our latest album “Beyond” and get yourself a FREE download while you’re at it.
There are no comments yet, add one below.