As this year’s round of sun soaked sound-systems shines on the horizon, Europe’s seminal bass-fest Outlook Festival presented a taste of what is to come at their hard-hitting launch party this Saturday, inviting crowds to thaw out the cold winter in the slightly less glamorous but no less serious setting of Ewer Street car park, East London.
The venue, encompassing near festival sized crowds, was filled with highly stacked sound systems and pop-up bars complete with cocktail lists, conjuring bustling high energy celebrations that seemed a world away just a few steps outside into London’s unforgiving backstreets. Upon arrival, an almost daunting plethora of sound vibrates from the dark tunnel ahead, with the night’s stages spread across three colossal arches. Encompassing the nights up and coming acts, Arch 3 saw the likes of Dark Sky, Fantastic Mr Fox and Girl Unit injecting a fresh and contempory twist to proceedings. Eliphino’s playful set which drifted through some of the UK’s finest underground bass and beats into some sure fire dance floor rhythms set the tone for the good-old-fashioned-party atmosphere flooding the entire night.
With bass rattling between car park walls, the only downfall to the night was that the sound was TOO good. Filling the vast, bricked environment with immense vibrations, the engulfing sound of Iration Steppas completely drowned out the beginning of Dark Sky’s set, causing crowds to chase bigger and better things that were felt through the wall.
Fighting the corner for Arch 2, Mungo’s Hi-Fi spread the peace and dub along with The Bug and Daddy Freddy, with The Bug in particular taking no prisoners, ending his set with some harder, techy beats. The pounding bass of The Bug’s ‘Poison Dart’ crawled up my spine at least four times throughout the night and having crept into my brain the song has been stuck ever since. Re-listening to it on humble speakers it is an entirely different song to the ground shaking power force delivered in the tunnel. Junglist heroes Congo Natty, Kenny Ken and Benny Page also delivered a relentless energy that ensured the party erupted into a sweaty frenzy of chest rattling celebrations.
Whilst Vivek and J:Kenzo ran the closing ceremonies, sending kids swarming to the speakers to soak up the last instalment of sounds, the spotlight shone over the crowd like a rising sun set and no one was ready for it to end. It looks like Outlook had done its trick on us, creating a scene more at home at a carnival, with a sea of sweat and furious bass that only left us hungry for more.
Adding fuel to the desire for the festival’s next instalment, the launch was sure not to only dispel any doubts you could have about the festival, but throw them to the floor and mercilessly skank all over them, with Outlook reminding us just why they earned a reputation as the best bass-oriented festival in the world, just in time for their ticket release this weekend… what an excellent coincidence!
OUTLOOK 2012 OFFICIAL VIDEO