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07.08.2014
BPM was founded by a group of Canadians vacationing in Playa Del Carmen who thought the Mexican Caribbean’s sprawling white-sand beaches, tropical climate, and ancient ruins made it a perfect venue for a large-scale electronic music festival. Now in its 8th year the festival lasts 10 days and includes over 50 shows by 200 of the most prominent international DJs. Labyrinth is located in the dense, leafy mountain range near Niigata, on the northwest coast of Japan’s largest island.
This weekend festival is quickly achieving cult status, hosting an eclectic array of musicians including Belgian producer Peter Van Hoesen and Italian DJ Donato Dozzy. The International Music Summit is considered one of the electronic music industry’s main networking events. Started by industry legends like the renowned DJ Pete Tong, the event hosts interviews, panels, and speeches by industry leaders during the day, and at night spectacular parties take over the luscious island – one of the most iconic is a massive bash at the UNESCO World Heritage site Dalt Vila, a medieval castle perched on a hill that overlooks the island.
Now in its fourth year Dimensions offers a unique musical experience in the Croatian city of Pula, famous for its smooth seas, untouched nature, and ancient roman architecture. At night the gates of the abandoned 18th century Fort Punta Christo open up to festival goers.
Held in June, this festival, veers away from the tropical format offered at many festivals and instead creates  an unusual experience at the heart of Iceland in early summer. Held in Laugardalur Park, a geothermal hot spot, which also has a swimming pool, camping ground, and botanical garden, the festival includes musicians ranging from international bigwigs like Massive Attack, and French artists Woodkid to a host of Icelandic acts including Mum, known for their soft vocals and glitchy sound. Last weekend, Team-Agenda flew out to Iceland’s capital city Reykjavik, to attend the very first edition of Secret Solstice Music Festival.
Being the camping-festival-virgins that we were, we had no idea what to pack into our nanoscopic luggage allowance, and suitably arrived unprepared with one change of clothes rolled into a small day-pack, and way too many litres of vodka in tow. Day one was admittedly not busy during the afternoon, which seemed like a good time to figure out the grounds.
What you need to know about Icelandic guys and gals is that they are ALL ridiculously cool, hot, sexy individuals. We discovered the most ridiculously delicious food offering on the festival site courtesy of Supa Vagnin.
Banks pulled off an incredible performance delivering new songs from her latest album which had the crowd singing along word-for-word. The first annual Secret Solstice music festival in Reykjavik, Iceland promised 24 hours of sunlight and a stacked lineup with big international headliners like Massive Attack, Disclosure and Schoolboy Q. What would you say if there was a place that has 3 days of sunlight, hot springs and live performances from Moodymann, Kink, Samaris and many more? By day you can try the traditional Icelandic lamb soup, chill in the botanical gardens and hang out with the incredibly cool Icelandic’s in the Laugardalur recreational area.
In the space between the kick drum beat and melodic vocals the imagination has room to breath, free from humdrum realities.


The events are held around the clock in venues varying from beach clubs, often just a simple stage on sand, to resort-style clubs and pool parties. The carefully crafted festival includes a tightly curated lineup of techno and experimental artists, accentuated by a state of the art Funktion One sound system and teepee shaped DJ booths. It also showcases the most coveted parties and noteworthy emerging music, all set on a paradisiacal Mediterranean Island. Not only can you lie in the sun and listen to melodic house music during a regular beach visit, but daily boat parties also make rounds on the Adriatic.
The Fort is nearly 150 feet above sea level and it offers sensational views of the Bay and the surrounding islands.
The festival features over a hundred artists, both local and international, but what makes it truly unique is that it coincides with a period of 24 hours of sunlight during the summer solstice. All we knew in advance is that there’d be over 150 acts, 72-hours of sunlight, we’d be camping for the very first time in our lives and that it was going to be fucking cold. Luckily our camping gear was already sorted upon arrival, thanks to legendary Icelandic graduates who set-up Rent-A-Tent, an on-site festival tent hire service, providing us with everything from tents to mattresses.
Clean cut, well dressed, with better spoken English than 90% of the northerners I know, best part of it all was how incredibly easy it was for the Nottingham Uni raving squad to chirspe all the Icelandic girls? The name scared a few English guys who were too high to read correctly and mistaken it for ‘Supa Vagina’.
The brits were buzzing because it was daylight past 10pm, and the Icelandic locals were too high and excited over the fact that the biggest music festival to hit Iceland was actually happening. We also discovered a few acts that are on our radar including Nordic solo singer Disa, Icelandic hip-hop group Shades of Reykjavik and, women only collective rap group – Reykjavikurd?tur (“Reykjavik’s Daughters”). Handpicked by a panel of experts that includes Audiofly, Ben Turner, Danny Whittle, Nick Curly, Steve Lawler and Renato Ratier among others, the series will launch at Sands, before visiting Space Ibiza, Zoo Project, Amnesia and Sankeys, among others, during the week. Between the 19th and 21st June 2015, there will be a spectacle of established artists with up-and-coming talent that will be electrifying with the midnight sun, lighting up the Hot Spring Valley. Add a virgin beach or lush green mountainscape as a backdrop, and you are ready for total transcendence.
The pricier shows feature big names but free day parties like Lee Burridge’s All Day I Dream, also dot the offerings. The Summit also coincides with the annual summer openings of the island’s palatial, mega clubs Space and Pacha.
Multiple stages outfit the Fort’s 100,000 square-feet hosting some of underground music’s finest. In total there were 5 stages, three outdoor and two indoor arenas, all with Icelandic names, which nobody seemed to have clue of, with everyone thinking, “where the fuck is this stage?”  The rise in festival attendees came on day two, where the crowd grew exponentially and the vibe was unreal, with an overflowing amount of Icelandic hipsters and zero British festival wankers, we were in our element.
For some unknown reason they craved the brits, maybe it was all the mandy shuffling on the dance-floor, or maybe all those cheesy one liners we overheard?


Embracing the Icelandic culture and vibe, we lived off the traditional Icelandic lamb soup, and caught up with Gabriel, who had been perfecting his soup recipe for the past three months, he says “It used to be a means of survival to get us through the harsh winters”.
We even managed explore the country and squeeze in some breath-taking sights during the day thanks to Reykjavik Excursions. To break it down, attending Secret Solstice Festival in Icleand is like having sex on MDMA for the first time. If you have any sense you will make sure you get your tickets early, as next year is going to be mammoth. It’s crazy, mind dazzling, euphoric, and full of adrenalin – yeah, it was exactly like that.
More specifically, pull a ridiculously hot Icelandic human regardless as to what your face looks like. Hence, the title Weather Festival might seem churlish, especially if it's attended by loads of Brits. Also in Reykjavik, Stockholm, Tokyo, Cape Town and Mexico these days, the Catalan capital is still the daddy.
Secret Solstice is the new three-day dance fest in the Arctic Circle where ravers won't have to worry about the sun going down.
Located in the stunning volcanic, hot-water spring surroundings of Iceland at the height of summer, this event won't stay secret for long. From Afrobeat to funk and soul, all with a futuristic edge, there's plenty here to get you dancing. Originally offering an escape after years of an oppressive war, this coming together in the Petrovaradin Fortress also has political meaning.
Or it is until you have experienced Mysteryland, 12 hours of non-stop carnage across more stages than Gandalf can shake a wand at. Aside from the definitive line-up covering big room monoliths and underground stars, it's Mysteryland's production that really takes the biscuit. Probably Amsterdam's coolest promoters, Dekmantel — also a label — really proved their worth with their first-ever festival last year. Entering its ninth year in 2014, Tauron Nowa Muzyka is a four-day showcase of avant garde electronic sounds set in the industrial realms of a Katowice coal mine.



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