Following the move from East London’s Haggerston Park, Found Festival 2015 made the journey South of the river to a new home in Brockwell Park, Brixton. Already known for their deliberately eclectic choices when booking artists Found continues to focus on showcasing producers and DJs that strive to develop the multiple strands of House and Techno – who keep pushing the genres forward and this year was no exception.
Across five stages, ravers were treated to some of the best sounds old and new, the much loved The Black Madonna whose own story is one that started over 20 years ago and who has seen a rapid rise since the 2012 release of “We Don’t Need No Music (Thank You Rahaan)” continues to go from strength to strength. Spinning a special brand of true Chicago influenced House music to revellers that couldn’t believe their luck when the sun began to break through the meanest of clouds, the party started in earnest in the ‘Feelings’ tent.
With clean production and crisp sound across all stages, there was no chance of drawing a short straw and in the sunshine, the crowds ebbed and flowed through the park like party moths to the electro flame. Bulgaria’s Kink had ravers stomping to his blend of broken beat House and Techno in the George Fitzgerald tent where some of the largest crowds could be found in the middle of the day.
The crowd at Found, was one that is now typical of Dance music festivals around the country and across the continent; from the recent graduates all determined that their student lifestyles will live on even though university has officially finished, the out-of-towners from Essex and Oxford, drawn into one of South London’s best known areas to sample the promised sounds on offer, the locals – cocksure and ready for a dance off and possibly my favourite group, the veterans, the mums and dads who have managed to escape their homes and their children to come out to this park and rave it up like it was the Summer of ’89 all over again.
The main stage boasted the likes of Germany’s Anja Schneider a seasoned producer, DJ and broadcaster that steered the huge crowds gathered in the open air, through an hour of expertly curated up-tempo Tech House Sound that she continues to champion on her label Mobilee Records. Quickly followed by Ellen Allien another of Germany’s Techno loving female label manager/DJ/musician and a expert in dynamic dance music sets this open air main stage lived up to its billing, in full flow for the arrival of headline act Guy Gerber.
Found Festival 2015 had everything from Ron Trent’s Disco-Techno and Dez Andres following suit, it was a stomper’s paradise that built wonderfully to the combination of Alan Fitzpatrick and George Fitzgerald in the tent of the same name that had me sorry it couldn’t go on beyond its 9pm finishing time, laying down tracks like The Laybouts‘ classic featuring Portia Monique “Bring Me Joy”, with the sun streaming down is what summer is all about.
Considering the spate of London club closures over the last two years from Cable, Area and Plastic People to Inc Club and the continued threat of closure to places like Fabric and Ministry of Sound, there has been a noticeable shift in venue choices to places South of the river. The emergence of Studio 338, and the continued success of Vauxhall’s Fire and Lightbox remain glimmers of light as dedicated music venues in an increasingly difficult scene.
The decision to move Found Festival to Brockwell Park speaks of its growing popularity and ambition and it may have just found the right new home in it’s relocation, this is a dedicated Electro all dayer that is gimmick free, trouble free and swimming in loved up vibes. Whether you’re heading over to continent later in the year or keeping it close by, this was a great way to kick things off. The Found Series returns in August with 51st State and we look forward to sampling.
Words by Akua Ofei // Photo Credit: Dan Medhurst