ECHO FESTIVAL CONFIRMED FOR 2013!
At the end of June this year a new festival was born in Croatia and, after a highly successful first innings, the Echo team have confirmed that preparations for next year are well under way...
Echo was born from an ambitious group of friends that wanted to bring together different cliques and crews on a beautiful beach for one rather epic holiday. Whilst their musical integrity couldn't be questioned there was always going to be challenges to overcome when entering a crowded, complicated and highly competitive market place. But the Echo team really pulled it off and there was no sign that this was their first year. From start to finish, from DJs to party goers, everyone was loving it.
One of the things that really made Echo was the size: with less than 1000 English festival goers there, it was a very relaxed atmosphere. It had to be: with temperatures topping 40'c on a couple of the days thanks to a freak heatwave, there was no excess energy to deal with stress. Luckily throughout the whole event there was no bravado, no agrro and no drama. Plus due to the small number of people and the fact that those who made it out were often tied in with the DJs or organisers, most people knew each other through less than two degrees of separation and those that didn't were swiftly initiated. After years of going to festivals and events, I've never known a friendlier crowd.
On top of this all of the DJs were on excellent form all weekend, from the deep house and techno at the beach bar to the residents up in the woods and the ravers down on the beach, it was all going off. Personal favourites include Pariah's marathon sesh featuring the Pariah-ettes (above!), Zero T, Bailey and Ant TC1 as well as Midland and The Well Rounded takeover. We hosted a 5 hour slot on the Friday night down on the beach featuring Sully, Pedestrian, Pusherman and Alors Cors and had a whale of a time. Special shouts to all the artists, they smashed it.
Wind up ya batty!
The timing for Echo was definitely right. Kicking off at the end of June, it was the first real taste of both summer and festivals for most people so there was a lot of pent-up party waiting to explode. Especially with a lot of people having literally just completed their exams and dissertations. After weeks and weeks of grey skies, exams, dull work and £4.00 pints, the Echo experience is a sure fire winner. Those who went have also discovered the bonus of going away at the start of summer, namely that you get a killer tan and stay well ahead of the game for the rest of the season! Bonus.
Of course there were a few issues that will have to be addressed. Being on such a small site led to soundclash in certain points but it was never an issue for those in front of the speakers. The campsite also seemed to be initially bemused by the idea of camping: its primary business being in static caravans and chalets. As with most of Croatia the ground is not very hospitable to pitching tents. However, after a brain wave, pallets were produced and people slept on an improvised wooden floor which I am told was very comfortable and definitely preferable to the rocks.
But to be fair that was pretty much the worst of it (Oh and they didn't let you go Bungee Jumping if you were having problems walking). For a first year festival, if those are your only real problems then it's safe to say that you got away with it. It's also a testament to the people who came and the spirit of the festival: there were no fights, no real arrests (Henry!) and no beef, just good vibrations. Everybody we've spoken to regarding Echo and all the DJs we chatted to out there had a great time and even before the weekend was out the organisers had DJs, managers and punters all asking them about next year.
Speaking of next year... Below The Line has got all the hot goss from the Echo camp and we can confirm that the team are already putting things in place for 2013.
So we recommend keeping your eyes on the prize, make sure you follow them on Twitter and Facebook to stay in the loop for early bird tickets as well as their series of exclusives mixes.
So until next year, hats off to the Echo team and to everyone who went. If you missed out this time then make sure it’s on your list for 2013!
Words by Dickie. Shubs to Nick, Marcus, Lucy, Maria, Loren and the rest of the Echo gang.