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Review: Found Festival at Brockwell Park London, 13th June

17oC and light drizzle? It must be time for a British festival!

Returning for a third year, but now relocated to South London's Brockwell Park, is Found Festival: a one-dayer boasting a mouth-watering mixture of some of dance music's finest underground heroes and up-and-comers. With a main stage, three tents (not including the VIP-only one), forty acts and only ten hours from start to finish, it was impossible to take it all in. Spotlight had a bloody good go at it however, helped by Found Festival's very manageable scale, with a few thousand revellers spread across a site you could see across from one end to another.

(As a side note, clashing set-times is an inherent problem with almost all festivals; headliners always go on at or near the end and you find yourself torn between multiple options with no realistic chance of being able to take it all in. Still - there are worse dilemmas to have. And while I'm at it, is it me or are the body searches on entry getting extremely thorough nowadays? I was damn near sexually assaulted! At least the bouncer was good-humoured about it when I said he hadn't even bought me dinner beforehand...)

The atmosphere throughout the day was very friendly and good-natured though, especially when the sun burned away the clouds and finally said hello mid-afternoon. Out came the sunnies, down came the brollies and off came the tops as droves of revellers made their way from the tents to the Main Stage, which had been quiet up until then. Anja Schneider's stand-out performance of percussive techno certainly helped fuel this migration too.

There were other highlights aplenty across the arenas: Bob Moses impressed with an innovative live performance (and not “live” as in tapping away at a laptop, but as in singing and actually playing instruments). KiNK followed suit, creating a spirited atmosphere relatively early-on in the George FitzGerald-curated tent. George himself closed things off there in fine style, taking things deeper, but not before Alan Fitzpatrick treated everyone to a set of powerful, atmospheric techno, his own For An Endless Night (Jel Ford remix) getting a deservedly huge reaction.

Over in Nick Curly's tent was the tantalising prospect of one third of Better Lost Than Stupid (Matthias Tanzmann) handing over to another (Davide Squillace) with both bringing the sound of DC10's outdoor terrace to South London. Tanzmann was good, certainly, with plenty of warmth and energy to his set, but Squillace absolutely smashed it.

As for the Main Stage, whilst Anja Schneider put together a perfectly judged set and Ellen Allien opted for lots of acid squelching, it was left to a true master to close things off with the set of the day, Guy Gerber. A great piece of booking by the Found team as Guy is world-class, crafting assured sets with extended mixes, heavy builds and tremendous pay-offs, even on an outdoor stage. There were many of us who wished his Wisdom of the Glove parties had worked out better as they brought incredible sounds and much-needed weirdness to Pacha. His free Rumors parties at Beachouse Ibiza are now are must-see though, as was his performance on Saturday at Found Festival.


WORDS | Andrew Fulker PHOTOGRAPHY | Dan Medhurst


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