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Solipse Festival – August 1999

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  • courtesy of marita* [august 1999]

    …..and there was much shouting and cheering and waving of little flags!!!

    So! i’ve finally sat myself down to it, after getting a bit of nagging from a few ppl, and many gentle but solid reminders. =)

    I’m not really sure where to start to be honest… er.. well.. at the start i suppose. okay. here goes. but be warned. it’s turned out much longer than i had initially planned…. =)

    Timo and i drove (as ever) down from amsterdam over a few days, and arrived at ozora early afternoon on saturday. lots of beefy security guys around wearing either all black, with ‘SECURITY’ on the backs of their t-shirt, or with camoflage combats, and ‘SECURITY’ t-shirt. very ‘don’t fuck with me’ kinda ppl, but i suppose it was necessary considering the size of the event.

    They refused to allow us to drive the car in with our tent and bags ‘n’ stuff, so that was a bit annoying considering the vast size of the terrein. it was *massive*! and that was our initial impression before we ever got a chance to poke around in the market and dance areas! so, after walking back and forth to the car 3 or 4 times, we finally got all our stuff down to our chosen tent site for the week, and built our house. =o)

    First night we were there, there was a massive thunder and lightening storm. the lightening was like strobe, quite impressive when you’re in a tent. =) overall the weather was quite good though. there was one day.. ehm, friday i think, when it did quite a bit of raining, but it was one of those days that we were completely flaked out and took a break from the festivities. i’ll go into that later though. =)

    Some of the first listees we ran into were chris (purusha) and brigid, and the cabbage crew. we recognised the van on the way to the loo sunday morning. =o) andrei and laura arrived later on sunday, and over the course of the week i ran into more and more people that i knew from the list, and that i had met at boom 97 & 98.

    Guys… the 604 meet at 5pm on tuesday 10th didn’t ‘really’ go ahead, although we tried our best, honest. trouble was… well… there was no chillout. =o)) there seemd to be lots of changes of location for where the artists camping was to be… and it eventually ended up being where the chill tent was initially to be set up. it didn’t make so much difference to the party overall, cuz there were so many bars and chaishops and restaurants in the market area, they also served as chill areas, but it kinda fucked up our attempts to have a meet-up. so what we did was, we went to the ethno-ambient tent, and sat accross from it in the grass where it wasn’t so busy, right next to the cosmophilia stall, with the 604 sheet on the ground in front of us. there were only 7 of us or so, but no-one noticed us, so we gave up after 30 or 45 minutes. but i managed to run into the others that i new before anyway, so big waves to chris, brigid, andrei, laura, denis, carsten, avi, sam (& jim’s organic coffee), jason c, andy, vadim, alex, mike, kostas, matteo, mike bruton, and jeff & aya. jeff & aya, it was brilliant to meet you both, it was certainly a pleasure to speak to you. i hope we get another chance again in the future. …ehm… i hope i haven’t forgotten anyone!

    Right. i suppose i should make a couple of comments about the toilets and showers now. this kept me amused for a couple of days. i discovered i can have an extreemly anal sense of humour, and chris and brigid can confirm, i’m sure. =o) well, considering we were there on saturday, and the festival ‘proper’ didn’t start until tuesday, we couldn’t really complain, but we could make lots of comments about the pyramid of poo that was building up to within 2 inches of yer bum after 3 days of not being cleaned. =) boom 97 attendees will recognise this. =) quite a harrowing experience as you can imagine. but fair dues, as time went on, more toilets were introduced, and they were cleaned…. no… they were *scrubbed* every evening from tuesday on, so that they were smelling of lemon, and they even put loo paper in there! so thumbs up on that one in the end.

    The showers on the other hand…. well… there was a block of about 10 in the truck ‘n’ camper van field. as time went on, more and more of them got fucked so that in the end, only 2 of them were working. there was another block of about 20 close to the market area (stupid place to have them if you ask me. why not put them in the camping field?) but according as the crowds poured in, the queue and waiting time were a bit unbareable. but one managed, as one does in these situations. and it didn’t take from the overall enjoyment. =o) i must say, the amount of guys that seemed to leave their undies behind in the shower was really amusing. especially when whoever went to use the cubicle just after them went to balance their showergel or whatever on some of the ledges and suddenly get someone’s undies falling right onto their heads. cracked me up, naked tho’ i was. =o))

    Oh, and the lake wasn’t there. seemingly the location for the party was moved ever so slightly, so the lake wasn’t within walking distance anymore. but we heard there was a bus going there from the main entrance.

    The ‘information booklet’ that was being handed out deserves some comment. this kept me amused no end as well. =o) there was the usual… rules and guidelines, eclipse info, f.a.q., and of course a timetable of performances. what gave me the giggles was the list of stuff happening at the ethno stage.

    Intuitive singing workshop with jalada….
    (err…. )

    Rainbow chanting with jalada….
    (i figured i knew this one from primary school already…. red and yellow and pink and green… purple and orange and bluuuueeee… i can sing a RAINbow… sing a rainbow… sing a rainbow tooooooo) ;o))

    The rest were pretty okay…. then there were the lectures and discussions.

    one of the topics was “meet. destroying the environment & impoverishing the developing world”. well, it was the typo that gave me a tickle, but i’m easily amused. -ahum-

    Delicate mind transfer.
    (ehm…. i’ll keep mine if you don’t mind…)

    The one on dreams might have been interesting, especially considering some of the dreams that i have regularly, but i didn’t get there.

    Oh yeah! the eclipse itself! what an experience. =o) the weather in general had been really hot with clear skies, with the exception of the odd thunder storm at night, and all was looking good on wednesday morning as well. then about an hour before the eclipse was due to begin, those big cotton bud type clouds started to hang around a bit. the moon had started to move in front of the sun, and they’re were more and more of them coming towards us from the horizon. it was the first day since we’d gotten there that there had been any clouds at all, so we were starting to mutter obsenities at them. it took a good 45 mins or so from when the moon started to initially move in front of the sun until total eclipse time. and sure enough, just before total eclipse, there was a decent patch of cloudless sky. so there we were, all equiped with silly glasses, as you’ve prolly seen from the photo’s on timo’s page ( until the total eclipse hit. you could see the shadow coming from the west, and the hungarian airforce sent a mig up to observe, which zoomed across the sky. i had been expecting it to get darker, but it was more like dawn, just before the sun comes above the horizon. it certainly was an eerie experience. you could see venus and mars shining close by, and a couple of other planets that i’m sure the names of which some learned person probably knows. ;)) all you could see on the surrounding hills were tons of camera flashes as ppl tried to capture the event on film. =)

    Anyway, i bet you’re all bored shitless waiting to hear about the dj’s and live performances. if you’ve stuck with me thus far, fair play t’yaz. =o)

    /me casts her mind back to the dance floor….

    The music started up on tuesday night, but we decided to keep our energy until wednesday, considering we had a ‘few’ days ahead of us, so we sauntered down to the dance floor around 2am wednesday night/thursday morning, about an hour into tsuyoshi’s set.

    We weren’t impressed at all with him. he played very beat orientated, housey techno. it was awful. granted, some of the samples in the tracks he played were hilarious, but that was the only thing about his set that i enjoyed. in fact, we didn’t stick around for it all. we spoke to richard from matsuri a couple of nights later, and when asked what we thought of tsuyhshi’s set, we told him that it really wasn’t our kinda thing, that we found his set lacking melody and very beat orientated. his answer on that was that it wasn’t surprising considering that tsuyoshi is a drummer.

    Anyway. we came back in time to see analog pussy. i had heard and seen reviews before, so i was expecting the high heals playing electric guitar on the front of the stage, but i definitely wasn’t prepared for the actual experience. we stood in uncertainty for a while, looked at each other a few times, and then i fear, the wise cracks started. the music itself was ‘okay’ as long as you kept your back to the stage, but although i tried that tactic, i just couldn’t ‘not’ look, cuz the woman with the red fluffy long-sleeved belly top, with red leather mini-skirt, and huge bug sunglasses was performing on stage *exactly* what i take great glee in taking the literal piss out of in clubs. i was getting a great laugh from the fact that the electric guitar and drums that she was playing weren’t audible at all, so i still wonder what the point of that was. the jumping around waving arms in the air was just too much, but the final straw was when she started kissing the equipment and ran screaming to the front of the stage with her hands clasping both sides of her head, standing up on the montior’s and screaming ‘ANALOG PUSSY!!!! I LOVE YOU!!! ANALOG PUSSY!!!! I LOVE YOU!!!!’

    *cough* ‘right!’, we said, ‘who’s going to pick up those pieces?’
    well, in fact, chrisbo did, and he did a great job, luckily. =o) next up was shakta, and played a good selection of old and new shakta stuff. we really enjoyed his set with ping pong.

    ’round this point i was distracted cuz i saw some ppl walking on the far side of the dance floor to where i was, that i ‘thought’ i recognised, but wasn’t sure, so i set out in investigation, and sure enough, it was an old mate from new zealand that’s travelling with the mutoid waste co that i hadn’t seen in quite a number of years. so that was a joyous reunion i can tell ya. =) ran into another 2 mutoid friends that i hadn’t seen in years either later on. *hihi*, yeah, twas a good place to run into old mates it seemed, also met an old mate from zagreb that i hadn’t seen in about 4 or 5 years. =)

    Anyway, at this point, we were getting a little tired, cuz we were still going on our own steam, so we left shiva jorg to it, and headed on back to the tent for a bit of shuteye.

    Thursday night. *best* night of the whole festie if you ask me. it started off at 20:00 with cosmix, which imo, was a pity, cuz cosmix plays such wonderful morning sets, but he played great, and the first prize for *seamless* mixing of the whole festival (well, as much as i saw) goes to the man. we were really impressed with some of the mixes he pulled off.

    There was a change in timetable, and next up was s.u.n. project. man, people were talking about their performance for days afterwards!! they pumped so much positive energy into the whole party, the whole floor was rocking. what a performance! i’d seen them at earthdance in koln, germany, last year, but this was 100 times better. this was *amazing*. they came on, as before, wearing their alien hoods, so when the naked guy got up on stage to dance with them, him being with shaved head, and being tall and skinny with long arms, he really looked like part of the show. *hihi*

    I think that scotty was up after them, but we took time to trek back to our tent, and make some coffee and have summit to eat. when we came back funkopath must’ve been playing, or at least the end of scotty’s set. ehm… can’t remember anything bad about them, so i guess they must’ve been doing an okay job. =)

    That’s when we did a drop of liquid, i skipped off to handle the toilets while i figured i still could, and by the time i skipped back up to the dance floor, many litres lighter, olli wisdom was on the decks. *horray* best set of the party that was. he played a brilliant morning set, we really really enjoyed him. of course, more and more sad gits were getting up on stage to dance. you couldn’t even take a decent photo. but the naked guy got back up for a while… and treated olli to a full frontal. as jason c said ‘i don’t know how much of a distraction that might have proved to be.’ =o)) but saying that, with what olli was wearing, there wasn’t much more between him and us either. *hihi*

    Yeah, people on the stage were a roite pain in the arse. but they did give us a few giggles on quite a few occassions… like (as purusha reminded me) the two guys that couldn’t seem to get their arms back down again… they reminded me of those two monsters in sesamestreet… one with unbendable arms stuck up by the side of his head, and the other with unbendable arms stuck straight ahead of him. they wanted to eat an apple, but the one with arms sticking out couldn’t reach the apple, the one with arms straight up could, but neither of them could bend their arms to get the apple to their mouths. so one would hold the apple to the other ones mouth, and between them they were able to eat the apple. it was a lesson in co-operration. *hihihihihi* i’m still a sesamestreet fan. *proud* none o’ them tellytubbies for me! gimmie big bird n’ mr snuffelupagus innieday!! *hahaha* anyway, there were 2 guys standing on the front of the stage, talking, with their arms stright up, with hands flopping around on the top. don’t know what the plan was.. maybe they were trying to dry off their armpits or summit, but they looked dead daft!

    Anyway, next up, kode VI. first time seeing them live, and i enjoyed them very much. obviously *very* into the music and having great fun dancing around behind the equipment. =) they had barely handed over to tristan, when it started raining. we hung around for a wee while, but at some point the rain started dripping off the end of our dreads so we headed on back to the tent. pity, cuz i’d seen tristan play the gargoyle circle party in july (review is half written – honest! *hihi*) where he played really excellently, and i was really looking forward to more of the same. it was fun tripping in the tent though, sound of rain pattering all around. *hihi* the only problem was the 15 or so times i had to get redressed to walk the 10 minutes or whatever roundtrip to the toilets and back. must’ve been all that running water on the tent. =o)

    Next day, i was pretty shattered, and did a *lot* of sleeping. we got ourselves up to see total eclipse… got to the stage… some’thing’ was playing… we were too tired to hang around for it to get better, so although we wanted to see chris organic, electric universe, and anti, we ended up back in the tent, crashed out, and woke up next day sometime. learned from andrei and laura afterwards, that the performance we’d rapidly witnessed earlier, *had* in fact been total eclipse. 8o/ we weren’t too bothered about missing sonic fusion, cuz we’d seen him at the taboo festival in belgium only a couple of weeks before, and hadn’t been too… ehm… impressed. *titter* (but! review of that in the works too – really! =oD )

    The last night, saturday night, started off with highlite tribe. scheduled to play for an hour from 20:00, at 23:00 or later, they were still going strong. very hands on performance, with some vocal assistance, they delivered a great show! heard that they’d been going for summit like 5 hours! but they had the whole crowd going, that’s for sure.

    The whole timetable for saturday night/sunday morning was completely arse about face, so i won’t be able to give you a definite rundown of who followed who. i think that haldolium were the next live performance, but i don’t think that we were very impressed by them either. a bit mundane. not very outstanding either way.

    I think i remember mike dog playing inbetween, but i don’t think i was over impressed by his track selection / set either. but x-dream played next, and we went right off to their set. i think that next to s.u.n. project, x-dream played one of the best live performances of the whole party. couldn’t tell you who dj’d next, could’ve been domi pastor, (of which i can’t remember much), or could’ve been mark allen, of whom i remember i did enjoy his set.

    And then, at some point, etnica took the stage. they played a good stomping set, my 3rd choice for best performance. =) ran into max later, introduced him to yoh-hie, and am happy to report that he was looking *much* better than he was at boom last year. =oD

    Again, i’m at a loss for what dj came next, but at some point the female half of analog pussi took the decks again for a dj set. her mixing was okay, but it was way too israeli for us. it was unfortunately verging on the point of cheesy. so we (me, timo, & jason) sat in the shade for a while, chatting with matteo and sam, and then wandered back through the market place towards our tent. i presume i slept. i’d be very surprised if i didn’t. =)

    We had an absolutely brilliant week. we met up with some fantastic people. =o) the only thing that ‘kinda’ annoyed us were the gang of israeli’s that were camped beside us. don’t get me wrong, i know lots of israeli people, i like lots of israeli people, but this lot were ignorant, arrogant, dickheads. (to put it mildly.) i mean, granted, we really had to laugh at them, music pounding, standing, bending at the knees in time to the music in the middle of the walkway in the campingarea in 40 degrees, passing chillums around. i mean, come on. ‘yes! we see you, okay?’ but in comparison to the groovy italians and english crowd to our left, this crowd to our right were just rude, filthy, disrespectful gits. it reminded me of momra. they insisted on using the wooded area behind our tents as a toilet instead of walking to the toilets like everyone else. they were the only ones i saw going in there. and on the warmer days, you could smell it. and when they left. jeez. the *rubbish* they left behind them! yeah, that’s another thing i don’t think i mentioned, the rubbish collection was great. horse drawn trailers came around every day and took all the rubbish away, and replaced the rubbish bags. there was one such rubbish point 20 meters away from our, and their, tents. did they use it? no. everyone else made a great effort to keep the camping area clean, with the obvious exception of this lot. *argh*

    Anyway, that, to be honest, is the only real gripe i had about the whole week, and that wasn’t the fault of the party organisers.

    Phew! fuck, that was a long one eh? it’s more like a personal diary than a review, but yeah, that’s one of the reasons i write these reviews, as a reminder to myself of how much i enjoyed (or not as the case may be) myself.

    It’s been a long time coming, maybe now you can understand why. =o)))

    Hope you were able to capture some of the atmosphere and fun i tried to recreate. we had an absolute blast. many thanks to all the listees that made it even better. =o)

    Okay, i think it’s *really* time that i wrapped this one up.







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Forums Rave Festivals Solipse Festival – August 1999