MP3 TAKES: Electric Forest 2023
Introducing MP3 TAKES, our event review series where we dive deep into the exhilarating world of music festivals and live performances. In a time when countless events grace stages across the globe, how do you navigate through the noise and discover the most captivating experiences? Join us as we embark on a journey to uncover the highlights, backstage stories, and unforgettable moments that make each event unique. MP3 TAKES is your ultimate guide to immersing yourself in the vibrant world of live music.
Sadly, Electric Forest 2023 has commenced, but MP3 MAG is still buzzing from an electrifying weekend. Tens of thousands gathered in Rothbury, Michigan to take on the iconic grounds of Sherwood Forest. As usual, one of the most coveted festivals in the U.S. market did not disappoint. Here are our MP3 MAG TAKES from the weekend:
Electric Forest After Hours
For the first time in Electric Forest history, EVOL Afters hosted the official pre-party on Wednesday for early arrival attendees. Day 0 energy permeated through the crowd, while the EVOL stage flexed an impressive HSD sound system.
EAZYBAKED, supported by BLACK CARL!, came fully prepared with their best bass-centric tracks. The two heavy hitters performed an impromptu B2B during EAZYBAKED’s headlining set, which solidified the tone for the coming weekend.
The EVOL stage had plenty of surprises in store with big time performances from the likes of TRUTH, SVDDEN DEATH, Ganja White Night B2B Peekaboo, Tape B, Lee Foss, Dr. Fresch and more. Furthermore, Zeds Dead put the cherry on top of an incredible weekend with a late-night closing set on the Evol stage.
Located next to the Evol stage, DeBussy Bus and Further Frequencies partnered for their after-hours event, Busted Frequencies. Artists stepped to the decks on top of the bus, surrounded by projection-mapped visuals, and a Funktion-One system that extended further out into the crowd. Performances included, but were not limited to; Freddy Todd, Saka, Treepeoh, and a sunrise set by Super Future.
The stages being so close in proximity allowed patrons to pick their poison. While there was a slight sound bleed in between both parties, it had little to no impact once you got closer to either setup. The stages were thoughtfully designed, and execution seemed to go off without a hitch. It was the place to be if you weren’t ready to end the night.
A significant change to this year’s Electric Forest was announced just before the start of the festival. The Hangar, a beloved staple in past years, was replaced by The Dream Emporium. Inside, you were met with the Bureau of Dream Management, where you could discuss your dreams, and navigate The Dream Emporium world.
Several rooms surrounded the Bureau of Dream Management, each filled with intricate art, bizarre experiences, polished actors, and numerous themes. A fan favorite included the car wash ride, where you went through a colorful car wash while riding a lawn chair, children’s bicycle, or other quirky form of transportation.
The Dream Emporium truly characterized what Electric Forest is all about. The thoughtful details and imaginative curation were one of a kind. It will undoubtedly be a treat to see how this attraction transforms over the years.
The storm that ripped through the festival Sunday afternoon had no negative impact on the annual Pride Party. Held at The Honeycomb stage, and established within the last couple of years at Electric Forest, the event has quickly become infamous for its unparalleled energy.
Pride Party staff handed out pride flags and stickers, while performers of various talents took the stage to celebrate the LGBTQ community. The Honeycomb stage is inherently inclusive on its own. It’s a 360 degree stage experience surrounded by raised viewing platforms that induce liveliness from the crowd.
Acts included passionate dancers sporting rainbow ribbon wands, drag performers, and a fiery performance by N3ptune + Rusty Steve.
The community aspect of Electric Forest came out in full force during the Pride Party, which inevitably was the perfect ending on the last day of the event.
The Magic of Electric Forest Prevails
Electric Forest tends to bring out the best in both patrons and artists. Patrons quickly become immersed in the unique world of the festival. Artists come prepared with their best sets and awe-inspiring visuals. The feeling of community combined with stunning art installations, unconventional activities, infinite music, innovative productions, and then some are what put the festival in a lane all its own.
Electric Forest veterans consider Sherwood Forest a “home away from home”, while first time guests leave craving more. It’s more than a festival, it’s an unmatched environment that inspires imaginations to run wild while re-visiting the inner child that is commonly forgotten. Without question, MP3 MAG will return to the legendary grounds of Electric Forest.