It started with a trip up north from the city that never sleeps to the campgrounds that operates just the same. Mystery-Landers Mini Festival in Narrowsburg, New York is keeping the love of Mysteryland going despite its cancellation. OneEDM was there to show support and join in the fun.
It was one heck of a trip on the road just to get to our Airbnb, but we managed to make it. Cold, greasy, hungry, tired, and cranky, we still muscled on and caught the tail end of Friday night’s festivities.No longer than a five-minute drive from where we were staying, the Landers campgrounds awaited our arrival. As we pulled up to the parking lot, the four of us could hear the thump and thuds of amplifiers a few hundred feet away and see the glow of strobe lights within the forest’s trees. Honestly, it gave me excitement and my exhaustion quickly turned into adrenaline. After receiving our wrists bands, we pulled in, parked the ride and took a walk around the campgrounds. Directly in front, the “Main Stage” stood proudly where later that weekend awesome acts like Ronaissance, Zealous, Jaenga, and Minnesota would rip up the stage.
To the left, campers and vendors lined the edge of the trees. Body paint, craft stations, and decor were among the tents. As you followed the path, you came across the Never Daylight Stage, an indoor stage with an exclusive
underground party vibe. Continuing down the campgrounds, we came across Jaenga’s party bus! This was a fun way to break the barrier between the audience and the stage. Jaenga’s way of bringing his music, his fans and the parties in one place, all on a vehicle!
As we made a right on the campgrounds, we noticed we were making a circle with next stop being by far my favorite stage: the “Woods” stage. The energy, the design, and the signs were all positive.
A little place of refuge and comfort coated with hammocks and mystical lights that pleased the imagination. It was a fairy forest dreamscape with shuffling beats and hula girls all while bad ass beats were dropped by DJ RT. His grooved out percussion heated things up and kept the festival goers warm as the brisk night wind blew.
We continued on down the line and stopped at the “Secret Society” stage where I had the pleasure of meeting and interviewing Orlando Bass artist D3V. He’s a humble young man with a spirit to connect and spread love and positivity while bringing the heat! He awakens the Landers campers with his heavy low ends and infectious bounce. Writing from one place, his heart, the melodic bass sound of D3V expels the “death to genres” catchphrase. He had me bouncing to his beats within the first three minutes, and I’m not even a bass head. If you don’t have the energy to keep going, you can look to D3V because his waves of bass power will revive you. When he spins, he puts in work, but I wouldn’t even classify it as work when he’s up there having so much fun. Doing this all for his mom, the genuine newcomer has a bright road ahead of him.
As I took in the rest of the campgrounds and festival, I thought to myself, this is a lot of work to do in seven weeks. Hats off to Rick Landers, Elaine Garufi, Philip Montgomery, Zach Hamilton, Jeff Storm, Mike Campbell, DJ Zealous and anyone else who played a crucial role in putting this all together.
“I’m not having a good time unless the guests are having a good time, and I was seeing that they clearly were and it just put me to another mood and level! From the people who played the largest role… to the dude who dove thru my set, everyone was part of it everyone made it the unique experience”
– Philip Montgomery
It was then Saturday and a whole new day of festivities awaited us. The sun was shining, the sky was blue, and our spirits were high. Character dancers entertain the “Never Daytime” Stage, club vibes and disco dance feels monopolize the Woods Stage and roaring effects escape the Main Stage as we made our way throughout Mystery-Landers festival.
Hours passed, the sun began to set and the fierce potency of night claimed the atmosphere. It was a night full of young talented acts that performed their best and continued the dispersion of love. I had the pleasure of meeting and interviewing Ronaissance, the New York DJ, with an affection for the 80’s. His up and coming EP blends the go-to bass and electronic dance sound with fusions of Hip-Hop, Classic Rock (his big inspiration) and House. A young man with a dream, passion and high hopes for making it to his maximum level, is a likely foot.
Space Race, the Californian/New York-educated bass artist, joined in on the Mystery-Lander weekend. With a passion for EDM that he brings to his fans, he’s inspired and thrown right in the middle, letting it out and living it up. His enthusiasm for the culture was a pleasant and heartfelt share that can inspire the lot.
As time went on, the sets continued on and the Cartel Twins had a seat with OneEDM to discuss the styles of their deep house, tech house, techno sound. Nothing else, in my opinion, is better than that. The similarities between the brothers were just as strong as the differences and you appreciate seeing both. Taking charge of their career all on their own and taking charge of working with family and maintaining strength together, the Cartel Twins are one of the best to see in NYC. They are happy to work long hours and dedicate their lives for what they love to do and you couldn’t ask for anything more genuine.
I then caught Champagne Drip’s set back at the main stage. His wavy and chill low-end spills that move your bones and massage your organs was what my body was experiencing. I took a seat on the floor of the barn with my back against a haystack and got “bassed” out from moments of low and sensual moods to bops, bounce and more bounce. His use of tracks with vocals and R&B flairs warmed my bottom on the cool barn floor. He also had this computer kinetic presentation that turned into this danced up and popping dance theme. He’s the bass DJ you can almost choreograph a modern dance to, like telling a story with your body as he drips all of his colorful mind rays upon you. The integration of genres influences and multi instruments presented the white suds to the style of Champagne Drip.
The music of today’s bass, trap and dubstep artists all have this very interesting way to making their music. It’s almost like math, an equation that they and their fans can understand. They can make unusual sounds sound like an actual language or musical method. It’s as if they all have a new talent that only the millennials can produce.
I then made my way over to the lawn to catch Robby Bell and David Mashiah’s “Glow Shower Hour”. It was a nice change of scenery and pace. With the imagination that’s put to an image paired with big party beats, the boys nailed a cool idea. As I sat, watched and listened, I notice the Kingston DJ Robby Bell spinning a very New York City sound. His dream to play in the big Apple could be closer than he expects if he keeps it up, as he’s just what a Manhattan crowd looks for at their Thirsty Thursday happy hour. David Mashiah, the Poughkeepsie visual artist, presents his video tribute. With vinyl sheet panels and two projectors, David presents a clever and fun way to turn lawn parties into theaters for the mini-festival. If Landers promises more of what they had displayed this weekend again in the future, they will have no problem reoccurring.
Getting to know artists on a more intimate level lets you get to know the person behind their stage image. As far as the campers/festival goers appeared, everyone seemed very trusting. They all came to have a nice time, doing what they love with who they love most, all in nature! And that’s the point of festivals- to come together and have joy. Even if one path doesn’t continue where you expected to, it doesn’t mean it’s really over and that’s what Mystery-Landers did for the nomads- they kept the circulation of love going.
I’d like to thank the Landers Camp crew, the festival organizers, the performers, the teams, the campers, and guests. You were all part of what made it one to remember. Lastly, I’d like to thank our One EDM team members Tom, Constantin, and Eunyce for all their help and support during the entire weekend. Oh, and earplugs!