Anomaly 2023 Summer Of Love Festival Recap

by | Sep 11, 2023 | EVENT FEATURED, EVENTS

There is something incredibly amazing about an intimate event

With trance, intimate venues tend to have better feels but tend to not have a stacked lineup.  So, when Anomaly: Summer of Love announced they were returning in August of 2023 I was on board quickly. Having gone the previous year, it was one of many favorite events of 2022.  I couldn’t wait to see the changes and be back in Birmingham, England partying with my some of my favorite people.  Taking place August 5th and 6th at Sandwell Valley Country Park, this 2-day event unlike last year happened with a wet and rainy UK summer having festival goers grab their wellies and boots as rain was not going to detour people from dancing to trance.

Leaving the heat of Los Angeles, I landed in the UK with my winter clothes that included many layers, Ugg boots, beanies and a couple of jackets. I was not taking any chances getting sick or soaking wet being outside in the rain, but rain or shine the party was going on. The park was big enough to host multiple functions in various areas. For the event, a large area was fenced off allowing for the camping section to be right next to the festival. Being a small festival, it still took up a good amount of space. Hosting three stages, one food truck, a covered bar area and two carnival rides, there was ample space for the guest.

This year seemed to have more people camping, especially with the RV’s. It was a great idea considering you could hear the music from your campsite and had in-and-out privileges for the festival. A great way to dodge the rain and have a seat if needed. We opted to stay at a shared Airbnb, and that was an experience for another day. I wasn’t sure what to expect being on the fields under the rain, but lucky I had a pair of boots hidden in my closet because or else, my shoes would have been ruined. Needless to say, my boots were done after two days from the mud and dancing with some amazing people. Attendees this year came from all over the UK, as well as Ireland, Malta, other parts of Europe, me from Los Angeles, and one gentleman all the way from Hong Kong. It is always crazy to see how far people are willing to travel for trance, but when the music is great the travel is always worth it.

This year the music was top notch. Unfortunately, the main headliner Simon Patterson had to pull out last minute due to health reasons, but that did not stop the party. Stepping up to the plate was the legend Jorn Van Deynhoven and Cold Blue who both played extended sets and just held the crowd in the palm of their hands on day-1. I was taken away in trance bliss from both sets but my favorite set of the day was Simon O’Shine who I truly believe he is underappreciated because his music and sets are spectacular. Having him play Above and Beyond’s Sun and Moon as the rain was pouring down created just the perfect mood. One of the best parts of this venue was that the artists were in the crowds before and after their sets mingling with fans, taking photos or just enjoying the music. It was really nice to see and catch up with some of my favorites.

Day-2, the lineup was stacked. I made my friends get there early so I could finally see Peter Steele play and he did not disappoint with a perfect opening set. After that, it was nothing but banging set after banging set from some of my favorite people, Asteroid, Factor B, Sneijder and Renegade System. But Signum stole the show. This man is incredible, every single time he plays, words cannot describe it. I was in trance bliss and left on a high note.

The event came and went too quickly. As we said our goodbyes, many of us were sadden because this was to be the last Anomaly event. But over the past weeks, demand from fans is pushing for the event to come back next August. I really do hope they come back. The small intimate crowd who consists of the most passionate trance fans with the big headliners should come back.  So, if you are interested get your tickets now for next year because you will not be disappointed.

-Danielle Sanders