Have you ever felt the ground hum with energy? Have you ever looked up to the heavens, only to see an electric sky? Have you ever been surrounded by thousands of people whose purpose of the moment is enjoying life in all its grandeur? If you haven’t, the famed Electric Forest is the place where all of those things become reality.
I first ventured to the Double JJ Resort in the small town of Rothbury, Michigan in the summer of 2014 with two of my best friends to experience my first festival -- Electric Forest. As the last leg of our nine-hour journey came to a close, I began to feel the anticipation and wonder start to build up inside me. What would the stages look like? How loud could it really get? Would a trap DJ even be any good live? These questions tormented me all the way up until we pulled up to the front gate. Once I pulled up and saw the elated faces of thousands of people, I knew I need not worry about whether the hype was true. Their smiles told it all; I knew the forest would exceed my expectations.
I’ve had the privilege of attending Electric Forest twice, and the artists, artwork, vendors, performers, and crowd has consistently impressed me. Let it be known that the Forest tries to incorporate multiple styles of music outside the EDM genres, so die-hard bass heads might be somewhat underwhelmed by the varied lineup. For the typical eclectic music listener however, Electric Forest might have the best lineups you will ever run across. Acts such as Bassnectar, Flume, The Sting Cheese Incident, Schoolboy Q, Luminox, Lindsey Stirling and Yonder Mountain String Band are just a very few performers that exemplify this diversity.
OK, so Electric Forest draws a lot of acts. But are the stages adequate, properly spaced and can the speakers even handle them? In a word: yes. In 2015 Electric Forest had seven stages (not including the Silent Disco) ranging from the hid away and diminutive Forest Stage to the larger-than-life Sherwood Court. Each of these stages is equipped with top of line equipment allowing for the loudest possible bass production while still maintaining razor sharp clarity free of distortion.
Case and point? The technical aspects of Electric Forest ensure everything runs smoothly, divinely and beautifully, but it’s the crowd that makes it a once in a lifetime experience. When you are surrounding by thousands of people feeling monumental moments of unity through sound together -- perspectives change and the world becomes a little bit more open. So grab a tent, a few friends, and a camera and make the forest part of your summer experience.