Back on our first American festival Bass Canyon!​

Let it be said, when Excision delivers a festival, all gunna be done right. America is big, everything is enormous. We know it, one told us, but nothing is worth the experience of standing in front of the view of the Gorge Amphitheater, under the hammering 500kw sound system from PK Sound on the Paradox stage. Add a galactic line-up to the equation, and you get the best festival we’ve ever done.

Let us try to add a bit of context here. We land in Seattle, which is definitely an impressive megacity. A lot of different neighbourhoods, amazing things to see and to do, and a lot of pot as if it came from the trees (laughs). After a few luggage problems, we finally arrive at the festival with a rented car (bourgeois), on the second night (but still losers). We are immediately hit by the coloured «outfits» of the festival public, and by the disturbingly tiny amount of clothes on the feminine population.
It is nice to watch, everybody is proudly showing his or her sign/Rick & Morty shirt, people trade bracelets. Nothing but good mood! Good mood yes, but sober sir. Because if you’re of course allowed to drink on the campground, America’s legislation about alcohol consumption is indeed quite severe. You even have to wear an armband to prove that you’ve the legal drinking age.


Let’s speak about the organisation. Even though there is a very harsh rule regarding substances (except weed as weed is legal and it’s everywhere) the website is well built, the app enables you to get the timetable and the map of the theatre in a developed way. Even though The Gorge is a very wide surface, it’s impossible to lose yourself, even if you want it.
The camping is full of camp vans all full of colours, flags representing brotherhoods, and even if the weather was a little capricious, nothing could erase the enthusiasm of the American festival public, all very nice and helpful. So, the general vibe is very good…


Let’s speak about more serious stuff now. After our first visual shock, we get to the pit. The 500 kilos are truly there, without a doubt. Our well known Spag Heddy spreads the sauce on everyone, it’s insane.
Because we’ve seen a few rigs in different European festivals, we have to say that there is no way you could even try to compare. The monster is elegantly dressed with huge screens for the mapping, and all the artists made the effort to put something up on this one. In general, the visuals are really cool and the lights well managed.


If the staff had to deal with a rig which is « slightly » stronger than it used to, we feel that the amphitheatre is not doing its first show. The sound is perfectly ordered, we feel the vibrations on us without being able to hear even a little piece of distortion. As good music lovers, we placed ourselves near the sound control box for the big part of the show, but we doubt that the other people from the public out of the pit would struggle to hear the artists (laughs).
American style, nothing else to say about that really.


Now comes the main course, with the interstellar line up you’ve seen on the poster. We will not get into the detail of each set. We could be writing a book otherwise (laughs).
We have the impression to rediscover artists that we’ve already seen on small scenes such as Trampa, Cookie Monsta or Bear Grillz, the rig made this feeling more than true. The tracklist of the mapping surely shows us an effort for the occasion.


Concerning the heavyweights of the festival, there is a good bunch of them, from Herobust to Zomboy to the master of the venue Excision, and their friend from the age of gold of the label Rottun Recordings: Downlink and Liquid Stranger, that don’t do in lacework.


The tracklists are brand new, the visuals make us think of the child of Banksy and After Effects, and regularly they announce a new track shown as an exclusivity.


Before we start our conclusion, special mention to Liquid Stranger, the hype was so fat in our bodies and we are not disappointed at all. It was an exceptional set. Special mention to Bear Grillz, who clearly evolved in his performance quality on the Bass Canyon scene, to Zomboy who knew how to renew Brostep sets (with that he has shown us some Riddim as well).
And finally Excision, for his detox that clearly made us crazy (The best one with Liquid Stranger in our point of view), and where his closing with NGHTMRE and SLANDER made us lose a tear of regret for their set of the first night which we had missed.


There we are, it’s ended. We have only the view to admire (and what a VIEW!). The balance sheet is quickly done, except the direct inconvenient that we are in the USA (and more), there is only positive stuff! An admirable place, artists with loads of punch. And mostly, the American public is great. The festival was nuts.


You should treat yourself and go there next year, it is possible that we’ll go back on the side of The Gorge…

Meanwhile, we’ll meet in a few days for its big brother, the Lost Lands Music Festival, where we will be there as well. Count on us for another report with pictures and videos!


Photo credits: Jake West Photo, Stoner Music, Lost Lands Music Festival, Fadewood Live



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