Photo Credit: Katarina Cvetko
Written by: Katarina Cvetko
Last weekend marked another successful edition of one of Holland’s favourite events and my 20th festival for the year: WiSH Outdoor! After attending the smaller version in Mexico a couple of weeks ago, I was beyond excited to see what the original had to offer. Dutch events have a strong reputation in the festival world and this one definitely lived up to expectations! Here’s what I loved about WiSH Outdoor.
THE OPENING PARTY
One thing I found really interesting about this festival was the opening party. On Friday evening, festival goers can enter the grounds and explore seven of the thirteen stages while the remaining area is fenced off. This is a great way to get a feel for the festival and the stages before the entire festival ground is opened up to the public. After spending most of the evening at one of two hardstyle stages, I closed out my Friday at the Cirque Du Rave stage with hard-hitting EDM duo LNY TNZ.
THE FESTIVAL GROUNDS
The festival is located about 30 minutes from the city of Eindhoven in a small town surrounded by grass and trees. The festival grounds definitely have a very Dutch feel from the moment you arrive, with thousands of bike racks set up alongside the festival for ravers to arrive in true Dutch style. Upon entry, there are hundreds of lockers available to the left and token exchange booths along the right side. The stages were situated quite close together making it quick and easy to go from stage to stage. Indoor tent stages have a tendency to contain the sound within the area but somehow there was never an issue with noise pollution amongst the outdoor stages. Along with the various activities and over 25 different food vendors, my favourite part was definitely the Ferris wheel! For only two tokens (about 7 euros), you can make your way to the top and experience one of the most incredible views of the festival grounds!
Along with the killer lineup, WiSH Outdoor also made sure to include various activities throughout the festival grounds including a mini-golf course in the middle of the festival and XXL beer pong! For all you FIFA lovers, the Chef’s Kitchen food court also featured a large screen, which live-streamed the games all night!
The Netherlands is probably the only place in the world where the hardstyle stage is bigger than the main stage and that was definitely the case at WiSH Outdoor. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the large outdoor megastructure, which was one of thirteen stages, was in fact that ‘dedicated’ hardstyle stage. Three other large tent stages hosted some of the bigger names while the remaining smaller outdoor stages hosted any and every other type of music! I definitely spent most of the weekend at the larger stages but loved the way they incorporated music and production into every element of the festival. Even one of the cocktail bars was transformed into a mini stage with flames shooting out of the roof and hardstyle blasting all night long!
One of the most unique things about WiSH Outdoor is that the entire lineup is made up of exclusively Dutch artists! The Netherlands is home to many of the biggest names in the world and along with seeing some of my favourite artists, I was able to explore different styles of music and immerse myself into a different cultural experience! Here are my favourite three sets of the weekend.
Without a doubt, my favourite set from the entire weekend was seeing Wildstylez on the Dedicated stage. The Dutch hardstyle DJ and producer played a 90-minute set filled with his classic hardstyle anthems as well as a tonne of new music and mixes! He also noticed me on the rail and instantly played my favourite song for me, which is definitely one of my most memorable festival moments to date!
LUCAS & STEVE
Over on the ‘Main Stage’, Dutch duo Lucas & Steve tore up ‘The Grand Theatre’ with their unique future house sounds and tropical remixes. I have been eagerly waiting to see these guys after listening to their festival sets online and they did not disappoint! The energy at this stage was entirely different from the rest of the festival and perfectly captured the essence of EDM in The Netherlands.
One of the most insane acts I’ve ever seen and one I can’t not mention. I came across this party stunt by accident at a smaller Dutch festival earlier this year and it absolutely blew my mind! The thirty minute set consists of entirely original Dutch songs, which have the entire crowd moving with the music. Certain songs have choreographed dances while other songs take crowd control to the absolute next level! The energy at a Snollebollekes set is absolutely next level and it’s one of the most insane cultural experiences you will have at a music festival!
The latest edition of WiSH Outdoor exceeded my expectations. After attending the Mexico edition, I knew that this festival was going to be next level and it has been one of the most unique and exciting festivals I’ve attended so far. With an insane lineup and impeccable organisation and production, this festival is definitely worth making the trip for and I can’t wait to return! Mark your calendars -the 2019 edition will take place on July 5-7.