PSYCHEDELIC MUSIC AND ART FESTIVAL
15/21 JULY 2014
Primislje / Croatia
MOMENTO: MO:DEM Festival hosts one of the most alternative line-ups on the festival circuit. It’s driven by an ethos to deliver the best in current underground music - and takes place in a beautiful natural location in Croatian town of Slunj. Thanks to the success of previous editions, the event is getting stronger by the year - and in 2014, gets ready to celebrate its third edition...
If there’s one festival on the circuit that sticks out like a big hairy monster with tentacles that curl through the trees of the forest that surround it - it’s got to be Croatia’s Momento Demento.
Almost every psychedelic trance gathering has a string of common [yet inspiring] denominators: art, music, decor, visuals, healing, nature and a big bunch of hippies on a quest for spiritual enlightenment. It’s the same beloved script that moves us to leap from village, town, city, border and country as we fly towards the next event.
Like a flock of bats outta hell, a small crew of pirates had been the last ones to leave. They shot through the dust bubble of the Ozora Festival and belted through country lanes in the middle of the night. The taxi drove at breakneck speed towards Croatia - the driver seemed keen to match the BPM of the dark-forest-grooves that blasted through the speakers. Destination MO:DEM was an exhilarating ride from the outset. It led to a vortex-like dance floor with basslines that sucked you in come rain, mud or shine.
Like most psytrance events , features the usual suspect tribes that bring with them their light, magic, art, creativity, love, talent, dance, music and therapy: the usual co-creative components that we all adore so much about this incredible scene.
Yet the one thing that sets the festival apart is a zesty music program with sounds that are strong enough to cut through the cheese and disintegrate any suspect slime. It has clean basslines, groovability and is psychedelic to the core, thanks mainly to a highly organic line-up that inspires all the gnarly creatures from the underworld to come out and play.
In other words, there’s not much room for cheese at MO:DEM. It’s a strange and unusual setup though between the two main music stages: chill out down on the lower level next to the river - and the main floor to be found in a forest space perched on the higher ground of a mountainous terrain.
The two floors represent a dichotomy of worlds - upstairs is the underworld: a glade-green forest that connects you to the unseen - where druids with horns run about by night through a woody village soaked in a warm, fuzzy light. Meanwhile, downstairs at the lower level - thanks to the hypnosis of the chill vibration stimulated by flowing water, art and healing - a pure galactic light energy neighs, sorry, we mean reigns: keeping you locked in the same space for hours on end.
Huitti Heitta played last year and recalls the main floor experience: “In the mind of a forest artist, this location is perfect: the dance floor is like a huge cocoon surrounded by high trees and the sky, open and full of stars. Forest trance has typically more dynamics and is less compressed than most other psytrance styles, so it fits a lot better in nature where there’s room for it to fill the air. MO:DEM is for sure a special pearl; a classic, and I consider it as one of the top, if not the best forest festivals of 2013.”
So there you have it from Mr Heitta. If you love forest and other unusual or quirky styles of psychedelic trance - then you will definitely love MO:DEM. But not everyone can handle the intensity of the main floor and the strange thing is: even if you don’t want to be there, for some reason, it’s difficult to leave. But once you do manage to unclinch yourself and descend down the hand-built staircase (300 steps which lead to a funky little roots-music sound system and cocktail bar!] - you won’t regret it. Chill Out is immense. The river will freeze your balls off but also kickstart your engine.
has a strong concept - it’s not commercial, and there are very few usual suspect artists on the line-up - so unless you’re into those darker, more hi-tech and foresty kinda vibes, you won’t recognise too many names - though Kanka, Gaspard, Malice, Noitrik, Mark Day or Sprocket might ring a bell.
Returning to the scene of the crime this year will also be Grouch - so a touch of Zenon will balance things out for those who might find the music too heavy - an insignificant factor though in light of the surrounding nature, chill area option and all-round eye candy.
EVP is also back this year. Never one to mince his words, he says the festival is ‘concentrated not diluted.’ This year he’s produced a track specially for MO:DEM and masters the festival’s V/A compilation. ‘I think given a few more editions, MO:DEM will mature even further. It’s already created an excellent platform for real psychedelic trance music - without focusing so much on the more ‘commercial’ styles.’
Words: AnuKi Media [Anu Sharma]
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