As a Movement Detroit Electronic Music Festival veteran is was pleasing and exciting to return to techno city, Detroit. Once again every techno lover of all ages rejoiced at the Hart Plaza on this year’s Memorial Day Weekend. From the city streets to the music festival the entire experience was a wild ride.
Movement Detroit Electronic Music Festival is more than an event it is the soul and root of what makes Detroit Techno City with families bringing their children, Motown food and vendors, and of course the fantastic vibes, and Patricia Lay-Dorsey aka Grandma Techno. Being able to see her again warmed the heart. Everyone was welcoming, helping, loving and beautiful. Trying to move through the crowd was pleasing, people will make way for you, strangers dancing together truly making Movement Detroit a one of a kind experience.
Each stage was carefully created and designed for every Movement attendee, all with new details and placements. The Movement Stage was placed perfectly near the VIP and Media Lounge filled with hammocks, private bars, and massage beds in case you pulled a muscle if you shuffled too hard. The cement stairs directing towards the magnificent Movement MainStage at the bottom of the dancing pit where attendees can get down and dirty by showing off their moves. Creeping down further into the city realms to the Underground Stage or known as the Underworld where the grimy is strengthened through music. Some of the most legendary sets of the weekend were formed at the Underground Stage a place where special vibes are created at Movement Detroit. Stargate Stage was near the entrance, the moment you walk into the festival you devour techno and house music. The stage was placed next to the Transcending an arch sculpture getting the feels and vibes of Detroit and its history. The Son Memorial Fountain is in the center of the entire festival, a perfect place for group photos, meetups, and frolic around. Walking right from the fountain was the Red Bull stage where attendees can witness LIVE acts and the best of drum n’ bass. The Pyramid Stage is cement steps formed into a Pyramid where you view the Detroit River and the coast of Canada. On top of the steps has the best viewing spot of the entire Pyramid area, a site where you can only experience at Movement Detroit.
The lineup may change every year but the crowd vibes always remain the same. This year’s lineup was compelling and for this first time had more female artists than ever. It’s been confirmed that all the female DJs dominated Movement Detroit Electronic Music Festival - Ida Engberg, J.Phlip, Nastia, Aurora Halal, Helena Hauff, REZZ, Mija, Hito, Charlotte De Witte, Ellen Allien, and Nina Kraviz.
Day one was the Dirtybird day with FISHER, Justin Martin, and Claude VonStroke to close out the Movement Stage with a deep dark and funky set. Starting off at the Stargate stage with a live performance from Gaiser following by an exquisite set from innovator Stacey Pullen along with his family capturing the entire audience. With Pullen’s daughter sitting next to the decks moving and grooving to every beat with noise cancellation earmuffs completely stealing the spotlight. Continuing over to the Pyramid Stage for ADID creator Lee Burridge with another perfectionist and gripping set. Standing on top of the Pyramid once again was liberating and refreshing. This year the stage was placed directly in front of the Pyramid rather than last year where it was placed on the right side of the stage. The placement of the Pyramid stage this year was perfect receiving an even wider range of the Canadian border. Boats passing by to every techno tunes blasting through the speakers and into the atmosphere.
Shifting things to a more darker side with Tronic label founder, Christian Smith. Drumcode and Truesoul Queen Ida Engberg took over the Pyramid stage with a supreme and sexy set displaying an entire new meaning to dark techno. Closing out the Pyramid stage on the Saturday night of May 26th was Lone Romantic boss, Maceo Plex with a trippy and somber take on techno.
Day two began with Movement Yoga by the Pyramid Stage with the backdrop of the Canadian border and the Detroit River - a breathtaking sight. Starting off the Pyramid stage with Detroit native Ryan Dahl with a funky set. The Stargate Stage was taken over by one of Chicago’s icons Gene Farris with an entertaining and lively set. LISTEN TO FULL SET HERE!
Making ways back to the Pyramid Stage for one of dance music’s heavyweights, TIGA - playing all favorites such as Mind Dimension, Stay Cool and, Bugatti. The sun was setting over the park, the music sets become darker. Stroll over to the Movement Stage to witness the master and legend in all that is dance music, creator of Bedrock Records - John Digweed. Showcasing some of Bedrock XX in celebration of 20 years - playing every hypnotic club track that looks set for heavy rotation over the summer. Taking everyone on a wild journey through time and sound dimensions. The entire crowd lost their minds during the entire set. Shifting things to a more groovy volume with Seth Troxler to his trippy set and psychedelic visuals moving to the beats he provided. At the Red Bull Stage beautiful and soulful tunes were being played by none other than maestro Laurent Garnier which brought tears to everyone’s eyes. Seeing Garnier in person for the first time released every emotion within me. Taking things to an, even more, darker side with the Russian seductive and somber artist Nina Kraviz. The fast-paced playing dancing techno queen blew everyone away with her dark seductive and loving attitude of techno. Nina’s set was by far one of the best of the weekend then following by her after party that she conducted the entire night. Seeing true artistry and its finest with her somber set as the moon shines over the crowd and the riverfront creating the ultimate scenery. Electrifying with her chords hitting to the core. Still cleaning the brains from when it exploded from that abrupt ending.
Third and final day with hardly any energy within and the body is over exhausted but the power of music and mind over matter will still keep me moving. Starting off Day 3 at the Stargate Stage with Golf Clap for another groovy and festive set. Continuing at Stargate Stage with the first lady of Dirtybird none other than J.Phlip with a powerful set. At the Pyramid stage Hito who completely destroyed it. A first timer in seeing her and it won’t be the last, she left everyone wanting more. The music of Italian superhero DJ - Joseph Capriati with a captivating performance. Standing up front and cent middle of the crowd dancing behind the one and only Grandma Techno, between all the great vibes, the music and being in the moment, Capriati’s set literally moved me to tears flowing down, completely losing control of all emotions.
At the Pyramid Stage the beautiful and Berlin-based badass, Ellen Allien. Giving the ultimate set of all with old-school techno tunes along with her own original tracks including Mind Journey, Call Me, and her killer remix to Depeche Mode – Cover Me. Their jaws dropped as Ellen Allien took over the decks on the Pyramid Stage, with her dark and defying set. Completely stealing the show and making things a little difficult to close the night at stage. Closing the Movement Stage was the highly anticipated performance from Wu-Tang Clan, the first time in 25 years all living members together on one stage. From New York to Detroit bringing all worlds, cultures, and backgrounds together. Performing all classics such as Wake Up, Protect Ya Neck, and C.R.E.A.M. The entire crowd singing and dancing along, clouds of smoke rising from within. Champagne showers spraying into the crowds, people getting drenched, Wu-Tang Clan put on an immaculate performance fulfilling everyone’s expectations. Checking out the Red Bull Stage where Diplo performance his closing set, with some deep house bass tunes. Closing out the Stargate Stage was the Ukraine rising-star, REZZ with her mesmerizing performance, playing some new tracks from her forthcoming album Certain Kind Of Magic. Dubfire closes out the Pyramid Stage with another excellent set with refreshing tunes. Proudly taking over the stage to close out this year’s Memorial Day Weekend. Another successful Movement for the books.
Movement Detroit Electronic Music Festival is the home to the largest techno festival in the US. Bringing everyone together from all over the world and welcomes all ages. It's been established that the female performers dominated this year's Movement Detroit. The people at Movement are unified by the power of techno and house music a universal language and they will never disconnect. Being able to witness the greatest performances from elite artists. As well as making new memories with old friends and making new friends that will last a lifetime. As the gates close and the Movement crowd descends back to their hometowns only before getting last licks of after parties and Movement vibes. Returning back to Techno City was like seeing an old friend. Thank you to everyone that was involved with Movement Detroit, see you next year.