Last year one of our reporters pilgrimaged over to Vietnam on a planes, trains and automobiles kind of mission, returning with rave reviews of Quest Festival, an annual music and arts festival taking place in northern Vietnam.
For those of us that didn’t make it, however, it wasn’t until we saw the photos above did we realize just what the festival, now in its sixth run, has evolved into and just how idyllic its surroundings are. We swiped through the images, eyes wide and mouths agape, and opened up Google Flights right after.
Quest is Vietnam’s premier cross-cultural multi-day outdoor music and arts festival. This year it will happen from the 4th to the 6th of November in the spiritual, serene and scenic Son Tihn Camp in Ba Vi, which is situated on the banks of the pristine Dong Mo Lake.
Over 150 performances are expected across four hand-crafted stages, including a broad collection of bands representing styles from hip-hop and soul through to metal and indie rock. On the DJ front, genres will run the gamut from deep house and techno through to psychedelic trance and ground shaking bass.
The full first line-up announcement as provided by the festival is below.
The calendar is also full to the brim with theatre performances, installation art, film screenings, natural adventures, workshops – teaching everything from circus skills and projection mapping to yoga – and more. It promises pop up cafes, sumptuous feasts, two camping grounds and heaps more, all together painting a picture of an all encompassing and fully immersive experience designed to eliminate boundaries between the audience and performers. And that’s exactly the kind of atmosphere that the pictures above depict.
This year the festival draws inspiration from the legendary tale of Son Tinh and Thuy Tinh, where the lords of the mountain and water vie for the hand of the beautiful My Nương in an eternal battle symbolizing the monsoon season.
Tickets start at 1,120,000 VND (US$50) and are on sale until October 3rd at which point they increase in price. Still, what a bargain. Further information on single-day and weekend ticket prices is available here.
Line-up round 1:
Indie electro pranksters SAY YES DOG (LX) lead the charge, bringing their upbeat synth drenched pop to Vietnam for the first time. Funk, soul and jazz quintet WINDSTAR SOUL (US) will be channeling Detroit’s vibe with a modern twist. SAIGON DUB STATION (FR/VN) are heading north, delivering a layered feast of reggae, bass, dub and hip hop. Cross cultural hip hop and grime crew HAZARD CLIQUE (UK/VN) return whilst DJ SOUP (AUS) will be cooking up a medley of hip hop, funk, blues and soul. SQUIDEYE (USA) are sure to impress with their twisted blend of psychedelic prog rock.
Rounding off the first announcement of bands are singer songwriters MATT MONTEZ and LA BELLE ET LA BETE (FR), shoegaze artist MADAMOISELLE (VN), emerging metal stars WINDRUNNER (VN), local hardcore heroes MXM and ADRIENNE MACK-DAVIS & FELICIA CRUZ (US / VN / IN), whose powerful performances and workshops have seen them perform across 10 countries to assist victims of sex trafficking.
With a focus on live music across the day and evening, followed by some of the finest electronic music by night, Quest have assembled an enviable list of talent including deep house purveyors ME & HER (SW) and hip hop, funk and breaks guru JON KENNEDY. Bangkok based drum and bass maestro DJ INSTINCT will be bringing some rumble to the jungle with support from fellow bass heavy-hitters IPHAZE (FR),SOMEK (UK) and 1DAN (UK). Fresh from Glastonbury and Boomtown, LIQUID ROSS (UK) brings his signature psychedelic trance grooves while DJ duo HAUSWORK (SA) round off the first round announcement.
Watch the preview for this year below and connect with the festival here.
[photos via Dao Tiep, Jesse Meadows, Kyle Davidson & Linka O Odom]