Thunder Stage has always been home to LIB’s bass-heavy music dance party. While The Woogie holds it down for house and techno, Thunder offers a variety of genres to inspire high energy dancefloors. At LIB 2017 you can expect the bass music for which Thunder is known and loved, as well as a few fresh psychedelic sounds.
LIB Assistant Music Director, Megan Young, explains, We think fans appreciate going on a musical journey. As curators, we want to book things that are interesting to us. We are influenced by our international experiences in the psychedelic festival culture. Rather than adhere to music trends, LIB musical curation reflects the expansion of that edge.
We caught up with three Thunder Stage artists, Perfect Stranger, Hedflux, and spacegeishA, to learn about their personal experiences with psychedelic sound for a trip out of the ordinary to LIB.
Yuli Fershtat, the heart and mind behind Perfect Stranger, is a genre-defying music producer bridging progressive trance and techno with psychedelic elements. Originally based in Israel, his late 90’s goa psytrance project, B.L.T. (yes, Bacon Lettuce Tomato) reached speeds of 134-145 bpm. Iboga Records pressed the not-as-fast B.L.T. tracks to vinyl and encouraged Yuli to make more music at that pace. Yuli complied and Perfect Stranger was born, along with the desire to create a universe of slower psytrance at 130-133 bpm. Feeling the appeal of the melodic and emotive sound, Iboga Records signed Perfect Stranger and in February 2006 released his first album, to be followed by three more. His groovy playful beats quickly established him among the global festival community, where he continues to perform worldwide at the most acclaimed festivals.
With a successful music career spanning nearly 20 years, we asked Yuli/Perfect Stranger about what keeps him inspired to continuously push his creative edge.
Perfect Stranger: I enjoy experimenting with grooves and melodies and tweaking knobs in the studio of course, but what mainly inspires me is the reason why I do it. My musical influences range from techno to progressive rock of the 60’s and 70’s. Artists and bands like Genesis, Janis [Joplin], King Crimson, Jethro Tull and Pink Floyd impacted me early on. I remember listening to Dark Side of the Moon when I was 12 yrs old. The lyrics on Brain Damage & Eclipse are as powerful today as they were then, and I am still moved by those lyrics today – because it’s a story, rather than a loop, and that story intends to bring one’s consciousness somewhere else.
And so my belief is, that as musicians even without the usage of lyrics, it is our job to make a space for people to dance and let go. To do that, one needs to get that consciousness somewhere else… Dance to lose oneself, or perhaps find oneself, to break the walls between each other, and between us and nature, and feel one’s place on the planet. Cleanse – that’s what happened to me when I got hooked with the psychedelic sound… A space for contemplation to shift one’s perspective. Meditative Trance Dance if you like – we can create moments to nourish the soul.
The unique opportunity to perform at LIB is very inspiring. I am humbled and excited to represent the psychedelic sound to the dwellers of Thunder Stage.
Be sure to catch Perfect Stranger on the Thunder Stage, at what is sure to be a legendary set by this beloved veteran of the global psychedelic music scene.
If Soul Science, the latest album release by Hedflux, is any indication of what to anticipate during this dance-worthy LIB set, prepare yourself for an audio journey through the many realms of psychedelic breakbeats.
Originally from Scotland, Hedflux producer Steve Young’s early music career focussed on creating up-tempo psychedelic breaks (see the album In Retrospect), while his more recent output has diversified to encompass a wide range of tempos and beats. In 2015, he left the UK and spent 6 months in Central America before coming to the US. The album Soul Science was composed in Honduras, and mixed in Hawaii, where he now resides.
We spoke with Steve/Hedflux, between tour dates, as he prepared for the bi-annual Audio Alchemy Retreat – a 12-day music production intensive, culminating in a 300 person micro-festival on the Big Island of Hawaii, which he facilitates alongside co-founder Andy Freist (DJ Opulence).
Hedflux: Music written with the intention of expressing the psychedelic experience. It should break down the ego and transcend culture. Whether it’s psy-trance, psy-chill or psy-bass, it all has a similar sonic texture, an aesthetic that represents the world of ideal forms and mental geometry. It can transport us out of our bodies until we feel like a dot flying through hyperspace. It can be fast or slow, funky or full-on, but it always reflects that uncanny otherworldliness of the psychedelic realms.
LIB is excited to welcome the eclectic sounds of Hedflux to the Thunder Stage. Treat your ears and listen to Soul Science in its entirety. From the luscious liquid glitch-hop of Peyote Dawn, to the dub-inspired Meatsuit Maintence, this will be a set you won’t want to miss!
Becca Sou is a multitalented woman on a mission. As the creative behind genre-blending spacegeishA, she has a penchant for bass-driven music with picturesque soundscapes that peak the imagination. As the Street Ritual Label and Agency Director, she steers the label to share as much limit-expanding music of all tempos with as many people as possible.
spacegeishA serves up diverse styles of electronic music whether performing at international festivals or as a resident DJ at Wormhole Wednesdays. Running 3 years strong, Wormhole Wednesdays is Oakland’s very own weekly bass party at the New Parish, drawing the largest crowds in the bay area for all types of bass music.
We spoke with Becca/spacegeishA just before her performance at Earth Frequency Fesitival in Australia.
spacegeishA: It’s the unique environment the music curates. But it’s not the music alone, it’s many factors like the place and the state of mind of the listener. The music is a tool for people to move and vibe, allowing them to express freely. All of these aspects create the container, promoting a psychedelic experience. Like on the dancefloor on one of the best dancefloors in the world at Boom Festival. People there are serious about letting go through movement and expression, one of the many things contributing to a collective happiness and unity.
spacegeishA: What I like about being a DJ is the art of creating a journey for that particular moment in time. Since realizing I would have the opportunity to perform for the Thunder crowd I’ve been exhilarated. LIB has always been trendsetting and is one of my favorite festivals; I’m thrilled that they continue to push their musical boundaries every year and feel honored to be a part of it.