19 Feb 2018

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Festival Review: Bay Dreams 2018

21 Jan 2018 // A review by Freecell
Bay Dreams 2018 was the biggest one yet, from start to finish this was a great day out, great people, great services for drinks and food, rides and a brand new set up this year. The main stage was closer to the other stages so it made it quicker to get around all of the stages to see the artists. Huge event to manage, but Pato entertainment and Audiology pulled off the biggest festival over Summer with a whopping 25000 people through the gates and with out any dramas. This felt like a Big Day Out concert except it was more upbeat with a killer line up of high profile bands and some of the best International and local DJ's and musicians in the scene right now.

The staff at both the ticket entry and the Awop areas were very friendly and it took no time at all to get through. First up was T1R playing the Main Stage 12pm he had a crowd and was playing Bass heavy tunes. The Main Stage was impressive. The Viper recordings stage had Local DnB outfit Twenty two playing a great set they had a growing crowd, and it was quite an exciting vibe in there. This stage is one of the best and perfect for bass heavy EDM DJ's and DnB.

The Arena was very impressive and it was a big space, it was dark and it felt like it was night time when you were in there. First artist up was Ruse. The visualisations and sound system in the Arena were on point, a great set up in there, Ruse played a good set, with lots of energy and worked the crowd.

And finally The Cube was the last stage which had a range of artists in this unique area from House DJ's to DnB DJ's. It was a Inflatable cube. It was a blue colour inside. Cam Aldridge was the first DJ in the cube. He was really good, It was slightly hot in there, lots of sweaty smiley ravers when it packed out.

Next up on the Main Stage was Kiwi Hip-Hop legend P-Money - he played a solid set, he knows how to rock the crowd, People were singing and dancing, there was even a sense of respect and hype from the crowd it was awesome. Truth played a spectacular set and the crowd packed out to see the best electronic artist of 2017. MC Jabz reigning from Christchurch, he was great on the mic, he pretty much MC'd alongside all the DJ's at the Viper Stage for the whole day, a soldier!

Jason Davis had the groove going on at The Cube. Followed by Spectrum with a packed crowd. Over at the Arena Written By Wolves played a strong set. The Arena was a great spot to rest. There was lots of chairs and air con, it was great.

By 2pm it seemed close to full capacity at Bay Park, it took longer to get around through the people but it was actually smooth sailing everyone would give way or be kind and helpful when trying to walk around or through to get in between stages. Sons of Zion played the Main Stage, the crowd was filling out almost full. I went back to Viper to watch Concord Dawn, Matty played an excellent set, with a packed crowd it was a great vibe.

I caught some of Ocean Alley, they had a Reggae sound, it didn't grab my attention but they had a massive following.Theia was interesting, I stayed for a short moment before heading to Trei at the Viper Stage. The dance floor was on fire! Great crowd. Flatbush Zombies was alright, slow bass Hip-Hop/ trap sounding stuff, it was great to see so many talented international artists in one place.

Skism destroyed the place, it was the second time I've seen them at the same place last year. It was a great idea to book them again, He's a machine at mixing up multi genres of EDM and DnB it was going off!

It took ages to get into the Arena due to everyone going to Sachi. These 2 guys were very talented, with various digital instruments on stage. It was easy to see they had a huge following. Both dressed all in white, they performed well.

Kehlani had plenty of fans, people from the crowd were singing her songs word by word. Foster The People was another cool band to watch even when you don't know all of the songs. Eptic carried on the madness at the Viper Stage, another top performing artist. Swindail cleared the floor at The Cube. Home Brew were really good, lots of fans and people.

There was quite a long wait for FKJ his set was delayed supposedly due to technical issues with the sound system only being set up for DJ's at The Cube, but soon enough he was up and he played an amazing set on multiple instruments, he was quite the piano/keyboardist! A.Skillz was another fine DJ to rip it up in the Viper Stage. Followed by Koven, that chick was an awesome DJ, she had her own style of mixing it was a great set.

Machine Gun Kelly was mind blowing! I didn't have any ideas who they were, but the main guy had the sickest tattoo's. The band was on point, they sounded so good!

I had been waiting a long time to see Cyantific play live. He was a machine playing banger after banger. But I don't think he had the crowd that he deserved as there were so many top artists all playing at the same time. MC Jabz jumped up on the mic again and hyped the crowd up.

Over at the cube one of my favourites live DnB artists Hybrid Minds playing luscious liquid DnB bangers he was on fire! It was easy to see the dedicated fans coming through for his set. $uicide Boy$ sound was like a horror Hip-Hop style similar to Necro but even better perhaps more contemporary. It sounded really awesome and the visuals at the Arena were impressive.

I've seen Pendulum countless times but they never cease to amaze me, what an epic DJ set Paul 'El Hornet' played at Bay Dreams! He absolutely rocked the crap out of that Main Stage, the crowd was going off! His sound engineers was doing a great job. He even played the chorus of a Kiwi Classic - Slice of Heaven by Dave Dobbyn, what a legend.

Everyone's heard of DJ Snake and Major lasers "Lean on" it must be up there with the most played tracks of the 2010's DJ Snake's pyrotechnics and visual projections was world class, It was even more impressive as the sun went down. The build up on the intro to his set was amazing, He enters the stage, I was thinking when's the bass gonna drop? And then boom the whole place was moving, he played a great selection of songs, his mixing was tight!

Matrix & Futurebound they both played a good set while I was there it didn't grab me as much as I thought it would. But over at the Arena with Jeremy Glenn from one of the biggest DnB international exports from NZ The Upbeatsmaking us all proud. I put my feet up and enjoyed his set to finish off a massive day at Bay Dreams 2018. You could hear the bass quite strong even a block away from the Bay Park Stadium. Thanks Tauranga it was a great spot for an event of this size. Bring on the next one.

Review written by Kerry Kingi

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