Endless Memories at Beyond Wonderland
A wonderland where endless memories are built
March 24th-25th, 2017, SoCal’s infamous Beyond Wonderland officially kicked off the festival season for the many joyful ravers returning back to the NOS center featuring an underwater exploration of PLURmaids and headliners in ‘The Endless Sea’ theme festivity.
Back at the NOS Center in San Bernardino from the last year’s San Manuel grounds, I couldn’t wait to see how they would utilize the space incorporating the stages and props. As always, they do such an amazing job by beautifully lighting it up into a spectacular musical world from entrance to exit. Large sail boat welcomed you in and so did the Bassrush stage with its loud, head banging music. You could hear the dubstep all the way from over other stages. There was the Queen’s Domain main stage, Bassrush, Dreamstate, Upside-Down House and the Aquarium techno room. With five distinctive sound area in total, you are sure to hear some new funky beats for your external buzz and style of tune.
Day-1 of Beyond Wonderland, I started off with my favorite local artist Leiel at the Dreamstate stage. With his hypnotic beats, he will take you on a trance journey for sure. Being one of my favorite sets that night, Leiel started off my festival season on a good note.
Once dusk set upon us, Beyond Wonderland turned into a magical wonderland. With character like the Queen walking around and full on costumes performers such as mermaid in character, there was so much entertainment all around you, places to eat, rest or beauty yourself up. And for the first time, I came across the Holy Totem tent. Insomniac is one of the very few festivals that allows their participant or ‘Headliners’ to create a sign representing themselves, their rave family or favorite artist. It was a God sent tent when your friend’s totem lights failed. They were able to restore his lights and minor adjusts. Thank you Holy Totem!
For the first time, Insomniac placed Bassrush and Dreamstate side by side on both days. With growing fans for both styles of music, there was no missing any of your favorite artists on both stages. Unlike last year’s Beyond, there was only a day of each style which wasn’t enough.
The high demand for Bassrush created one of the biggest section this year. It was filled-packed with head bangers ready to get loose and let it all go. With artist like Alison Wonderland, Illenium, Ekali, Camo & Krooked to name a few, this stage had a way to shake and rattle the whole ground. To the right of Bassrush in the small Citrus building was the funky sounds of techno music filling up fast for Rezz set. People were trying their hardest to get in on time and get a glimpse of those crazy funky lenses she’s infamous for wearing. And in between Bassrush and techno was the Upside-Down House hosted by Discovery Project featuring contest winner artists bringing their styles and funk to the world. Making a name for themselves, it was a smaller section but I must say for those two days, it was always bumping and packed.
Exiting from the techno room was my favorite stage of them all – Dreamstate – definitely welcoming to all, with Vini Vici bringing in new faces into the trance scene. It was a fun-filled room with nothing but good vibes side to side. It was a beautiful sight and rare to see Bassrush flags at Dreamstate but it was welcoming. With a night of psy trance of Astrix, Vini Vici and Simon Patterson, they threw down by taking us all on a whole other journey as always.
As the night progressed along, so did the main headliners. An artist not to be miss was one of my favorite house artist – Martin Solveig – who was playing his old and current tracks. Audien and GTA took over and brought down the house with no disappointment while Sandern Van Doorn closed out the main stage on a good note.
Day-1 ending with my running into the Insomniac man himself Pasquale Rotella, it’s always a pleasure seeing him walking among us and partying with us, even more so being able to thank him for his hard work and everything he created and maintained.
Starting day-2, I brought my brother who hasn’t gone to an event since the early 90’s along with his wife for her very first rave. Heading directly to the main stage to warm them up to the unexpected, I wanted to make sure they were getting a better visual on the scene with its different styles walking around the grounds. She familiarized herself really fast with the music genre and the many different attires that many headliners represented themselves through the expression of fashion. After exploring the grounds, she found herself immersed with bass heads at Bassrush enjoying sets from Bro Safari and Snails, then soon after we returned back to the main stage to catch a little of Diplo set. Leaving them for some bonding time, I found myself lost at the Dreamstate stage again and enjoying the beautiful sounds of Aly & Fila, Markus Schultz and Paul Van Dyk.
This year was definitely an epic year at Beyond Wonderland as we were spoiled with two days of Bassrush and Dreamstate. Being dust free, this was the perfect place to relocate the event. Having no complaints via social media on being sick or having some sort of valley fever-like symptoms from the San Manuel dusts. Everyone left happy, sore and ready for another round of adventure at EDC as ‘Endless Memories’ were made.