Review: Found Festival 2016

Brockwell Park hosted the sixth edition of Found Festival on 11th June with a serious House and Techno lineup. Whilst there was plenty on offer from the genres up and coming artists, the stellar headline set from Kerri Chandler and his deputy Derrick May genuinely stole the show and reminded us that, sometimes, the old guard know best.

The festival was exceptionally well crafted; it’s stages were all well sized and aptly powered with their industry associations, be that XLR8R, FACT Magazine or i-D Mix to name but-a-few, worked very well. There was a balance between traditional open stages, large marquees (perfect for avoiding the rain) and even a small stage ran out of a caravan tucked away in something of a forest in the middle of the site. This diversity guaranteed value for money, since tickets at their most modest (super early bird) were a mere £15. The main downside as far as site set up is concerned was that the queues for the toilets and booze tokens were unbearably long. The cashless system can work well, but here was incredibly frustrating. When time is of the essence, as is true for all day festivals, any of it spent needlessly queuing is doubly painful, especially when the drinks are so expensive.

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The atmosphere was buoyed by a friendly crowd, indigenous to the type of music and not deterred by the intermittent rain of a typical British summer day that required sunglasses and raincoats in equal measure.  Leon Vynehall’s 1.30 set was far too early considering most punters arrive around the four o’clock mark, but was predictably impressive, debuting several tracks from his recent E.P. Rojus. The ‘Find Me in the Dark’ stage was suitably dark (and heavy) following towering performances from both Blawan and Surgeon’s Trade, and the Berlin architect-cum-techno heavyweight Rødhåd. The German female duo Mara Trax engrossed with an energetic performance, but to a fairly small crowd.  This, in large tents, unfortunately became a feature of the day, and similarly afflicted an epic 4 hour Theo Parish and Marcellus Pittman b2b, which for the most part only saw one of the pair on the stage at any time performing to a half empty marquee.

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This encouraged us to stick to the main stage, and we were rewarded for doing so. Derrick May took the crowd back to Detroit with an upbeat and saxophone heavy set, rattling off classics before Kerri Chandler took to the stage. As the rain began to fall, Chandler expertly adapted his set accordingly by dropping the Jazmina rethink of the Intense classic ‘Let the Rain Come Down’. Between hits, several of which were weather related, he treated the crowd to intermittent keyboard solos, expertly incorporated into his tracks and earning unanimous approval. The highlight came when he played Danny Krivit’s edit of Derrick May’s own classic ‘Strings of Life’, prompting widespread euphoria. There were desperate attempts to force an encore, but strict licensing agreements meant, much to the chagrin of the crowd, that the music ended at 9pm sharp.

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Overall, despite some organisational difficulties, the power of the music from an extraordinarily well thought through lineup made this year’s Found Festival a success.

Organisation 5/10

Music 10/10

Site Setup 7/10

Festival Communication 6/10

Attention to Detail 8/10

Creative Content 8/10

Value for Money 10/10

Overall 7/10

Photos – Marc Sethi

Tom Evans


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