Festivals are places we go to lose ourselves – with friends, in nature, or to the music. Luckily for you, FozzyFest is one of those rare festivals that’s able to boast having some of the best of all three and it’s right around the corner, the last stop of festival season before our summer of deep beats, epic nights and personal revelations comes to an end and we settle in for whatever Canadian winter may bring.
Last year’s lineup was full of all my new favourite artists, and FozzyFest‘s 2015 schedule not only matches that excitement but doubles it. Bringing high caliber headliners like drum and bass queen Reid Speed, Featurecast and Plump DJs as well as funky community favourites Freddy J and Defunk, this festival promises a full weekend of sure-fire positive vibes.
It’s a treat to come to FozzyFest and see the stages shared by locals many of us love to support around the festival circuit. Last year I arrived just in time to catch Kali Yuga at the Beach stage, a set that found dozens of friends dancing with smiles and hugs, ready to go. 403DNB is properly represented throughout the weekend, from Proph to Jams. Robbie C had a set that kept dozens of us out dancing ‘til the late hours of the morning at Motion Notion this year.
Out on this little slice of lakeside paradise, you can explore the shore from the Beach stage, down to the Crystal Cave, without stepping off of the hot sand. The Crystal Cave is a great place to start your party or spend some afternoon hours hanging out with friends, and after the nighttime hits, it’s the high energy bass of the Beach stage that calls this festival ‘head over. This year the Beach can cater to a variety of music tastes, with Friday night featuring Slynk and Sammy Senior, and a darker drum and bass Saturday that will deliver the performances of The Prototypes, and Calgary’s own Spiral Architects. Not to be outdone, the Forest stage provides the perfect balance with a glitchy, funky, and renowned set of producers waiting for their chance to blow your minds. Here we’re blessed with performances from creators like Treblesum and Melo.nade, whose midtempo Motion Notion set at the Cabana blew me away. Still drawing a crowd while they were shutting down the stage, this duo whips up a particular energy on the dancefloor that’s hard to resist.
You’re guaranteed some motherfunkin’ good times with the likes of Funkanomics and the UK’s Featurecast gracing our stages (Can you tell we are excited about Featurecast? Featurecast!). Slynk is a community favourite in this festival group, and his sets can bring out some of the best times at a festival. Neon Steve from Vancouver Island can play a mad decent variety of styles, so you never know what to expect from one of this Fractal Forest veteran’s sets. We could be in for a night of trap bangers, jackin’ house beats or any number of future bass rhythms, the only guarantee is we’ll all be having an epic time at the Forest Stage on Saturday night!
Our affectionately named FozzyFest has been taken from a backwoods rave birthday party eleven years ago, pushed out to sail the floodwaters, and brought to rest on the shores of Lake Koocanusa, BC. With one of the most gorgeous backdrops that you can find at a festival in Western Canada, this beautiful little beach party is sure to capture your senses. If you’ve been there, you can imagine it – emerging out of the tall tree line to view the crystal waters sparkling between a shore of white sand and the distant mountains, giants that offer detail to this horizon. This year we will even be treated with more beach space than last, as the lake level has lowered.
All that sand will be put to good use, with many of the workshops throughout the weekend taking place along the same shores. Get your flow on, craft a new prop, learn something new, or do some morning yoga in the early hours of Friday or Saturday and take advantage of as much time as you can to enjoy the alluring landscape that accompanies your experience.
Growing rapidly in the past few years, the Grasmere-centered, Calgary-led party has expanded from its humble beginnings to a predicted sell-out this year of 2000 attendees, artists and volunteers – the maximum population this beautiful slice of paradise can hold!
With this growth come some exciting changes for the festival! The sound and lighting will continue to be supplied by the local standard for quality, PK Sound, but nothing else will be the same. Inspired to take the festival to another level, the crew has conspired to create an all-new forest stage that will blow last year’s out of the water. Even more dramatic, the incredible Beama Visual Environments team who do visuals at Shambhala’s famed Fractal Forest and Pagoda, as well as many other great local festival stages like Motion Notion’s Cabana, has been brought onboard to create an all-new Beach Stage to maximize the beefed up lineup and expanded beach dance space.
Yet, the most wonderful thing about FozzyFest is …
…all of you. Littering the beach every day is nothing but gold. Every character at FozzyFest is someone worth meeting, and the festival’s grassroots are easy to want to support. Between the bass bunnies hooping in the sand, the wicked houseboat parties that take place, and the sunshine-soaked introductions made while relaxing on the beach, this is the last taste of outdoor bass bliss for our family of friends on the underground festival circuit.
If you have your tickets already – I’ll see you on the dancefloor, otherwise FozzyFest 2015 has sold out!
PHOTOGRAPHY: Third Eye Arts