Electric Forest has come and gone once again. The 4-day festival held at the Double JJ Ranch in Rothbury, Michigan from June 26-29 sold-out for the first time in its history—and for good reasons. The reputation of Electric Forest has grown tremendously over the last year and this year’s lineup, combining Jam-band super powers with EDM superstars, provided no excuses to sit this one out.
We arrived early Thursday afternoon and we were pleasantly surprised at how organized and efficient it was to enter the campgrounds. Despite the festival being sold out, the campsite did not feel overcrowded. However, the one difference that we noticed immediately was that a younger fan base was in attendance, one that had come specifically to see the medley of DJs.
Our biggest issue with the festival this year was the amount of overlapping acts, but we mentally prepared ourselves beforehand for the acts that we knew we were going to miss.
Thursday was our toughest day with the most conflicts. We started Thursday off with Cherub. Cherub played a phenomenal set and they informed us that their flight had been delayed and they remarked several times “fuck the plane”. We next saw Paper Diamond at the Ranch Arena who threw down a set that can be only described as perfect festival music – the mesh of intricately woven bass and trap had the crowd amped from start to finish. We were next faced with one of our largest decisions – to see EOTO or head over to the Tripolee stage for some deeper beats. We chose the latter and were not disappointed whatsoever with Dirtybird’s Justin Martin. The remainder of our night consisted of The Glitch Mob, Dusky, Zeds Dead, Classixx, and a taste of Umphrey’s McGee. The LA Duo Classixx surprised us with a killer set and we highly recommend giving them a listen.
Friday was our first full day in the forest and we entered in time for Lauryn Hill’s 5:30 performance. Unfortunately, Lauryn Hill decided to keep her fans waiting for over 30 minutes in the scorching heat before taking the stage. We almost left, but we were glad we didn’t. Lauryn Hill had not performed in years and it was truly a special moment. She performed all of her classics including ‘Killing Me Softly’. We decided to stay at the Ranch Arena after Lauryn Hill’s performance to catch some of The String Cheese Incident’s first night. The rest of our night consisted of Conspirator, STS9, Dantiez & Kevin Saunderson, Zedd, and we made a pit stop at Excision on our way out.
Saturday was the most music packed day with the final set ending at 3:15. We entered in time to catch some of Xavier Rudd, which we thoroughly enjoyed. Next, we decided to stay at the Ranch Arena to listen to Stephen Marley and chill out to some reggae. The rest of our Saturday consisted of us hopping around to MK, Destructo, Booka Shade, Steve Angello, STS9, and Art Department.
Sunday was the final day and you could sense the angst amongst the crowd as nobody was mentally prepared to leave the forest and travel home. We spent a large part of Sunday relaxing in a hammock in the forest and listening to Earphunk and Kygo. We next headed over to Tripolee to catch some of What So Not and Seven Lions (both acts that we are huge fans of). The rest of our Sunday consisted of some more Cheese, Tycho, and finally, we closed out our forest with Moby.
It’s hard to believe how fast the event seemed to fly by. All we can do now is countdown the days until we return to the magical world that is Electric Forest in 2015. Until next year.
[Article and photos by Dan Drufovka]
Please let us know what you thought about the show in the comments box below the photo gallery!
You can view additional photos in the gallery below (click thumbnails to enlarge):