Photo Taken by Taylor Regulski for Festival Squad
If you thought a little rain was going to stop HomeBass Orlando from partying, then think again. The second edition of the resort-takeover event absolutely delivered on its promise of sun, fun, and dancing last week as EDM fans from all over flocked to the Avanti Palms Resort and Convention Center. Located at the heart of International Drive, the Avanti Palms Resort was a significant step up in quality from the Grand Orlando Resort where HomeBass held its inaugural event during EDC Orlando back in November. The hotel rooms were nicer, the pool area was more expansive, and there was much more space within the convention center for everyone to dance, relax, and enjoy the party.
That being said, the event did have its fair share of challenges over the course of the weekend but was able to persevere with the help of their outstanding staff and the undying enthusiasm of its fans.
Starting with the most important aspect of the weekend, the music was 100% on point. HomeBass made sure to supply their guests with more than enough artists to keep the party going each day and certainly kept things going well into the night. Starting on Friday, the HomeBass kick-off party featured a steady lineup of heart-pumping house music as Holly Woods, Gawp, and Noizu turned a hotel banquet hall into an all-out rave before What So Not closed out the night from 1:30AM to 3AM adding a heavy touch of bass to a crowd that was desperate to shuffle the night away.
While many guests were still getting settled after a long day of traveling, others continued to rage until morning as the hotel towers transformed into one hell of an afterparty. Leave it to some bassheads to set up a deck and some speakers right outside the elevators on the sixth floor.
If you were trying to sleep by this point, good luck. People were pouring out of rooms from every direction, dancing in the hallways, and enjoying an experience you’ll never find anywhere else. When all did seem quiet, rumor has it that a lone saxophone player would periodically make himself heard doing his best rendition of your favorite Griz tracks.
After catching a few hours of sleep Saturday morning, some of the more ambitious guests enjoyed an early morning yoga session before making their way to the pool-side stage where Prescription Records was set to spin the day away. The HomeBass team did an incredible job of transforming a normal resort-style pool into a dance music oasis filled with options for everyone. For those ready to dance, the stage featured an open dance floor with plenty of room for everyone to have their own space and get down. Others chose to be a bit more relaxed, lazily drifting around the pool on floaties or relaxing their muscles in one of the hot tubs or open lawn areas. At no time did the pool party feel overcrowded as Jack Beats, Dr. Fresch, and Damaged Goods closed out a long day of fun in the sun before guests made their way back to their rooms to regroup for the Wakaan takeover later that night.
The Wakaan takeover brought a fresh dose of variety to the party as they elevated the upbeat house vibes with their unique style of dubstep and heavy bass. Lucii, Luzcid, LSDream, and Shlump blew the roof off of the Avanti Palms Convention Center as bassheads rode what would barely qualify as a rail. The energy level of the room was on a whole different level than night one and carried on until 5AM as Shanghai Doom closed down the show.
On Sunday, the musical vibes subtly shifted yet again. Perhaps an underrated aspect of the weekend, HomeBass did an exceptional job of layering their artists in a way that felt exceptionally balanced. No two parties felt the same, but the transition between them felt smooth and effortless.
By Sunday it was time to replace the bass heavy acts with a more relaxed vibe of techno and house as the Dirtybird Players hosted the final pool party of the weekend. Despite a brief rain delay that moved the party inside for a couple of hours, guests had an absolute blast as Christian Martin, Kill Frenzy, Justin Martin, and Claude Vonstroke took the stage. The pool party wrapped up around 10PM before the crowd moved back inside for the Desert Hearts Takeover.
By this point in the weekend, even the most ambitious in the crowd were starting to slow down a bit. Desert Hearts delivered the perfect mix of house and relaxing techno to close out the night as Mikey Lion and Lee Reynolds spun individually and then B2B for an audience of hoopers, poi spinners, and fans who were just eager to spread some positivity. It was a beautiful ending to an action-packed weekend.
All in all, HomeBass 2019 was a resounding success. Yes there were a few things to complain about here and there like the overcrowded parking situation or the general busyness of the tourist-heavy International Drive, but if you’re looking for a one of a kind experience that celebrates dance music in a way that no festival can, then HomeBass is definitely for you.
The event will move back to its original location at The Grand Orlando Resort this fall and will once again coincide with EDC Orlando. While the Grand Orlando Resort is a bit of a downgrade from the Avanti Palms in terms of room quality and proximity to EDC, we are actually looking forward to the switch. The original location is much easier to navigate in and out of and seemed to offer a more intimate environment being tucked away from the lights and sounds of Orlando’s tourism district.
We look forward to returning in November and can’t wait to see what HomeBass has in store for us next.