Going to an all trance event has always been on my festival bucket list, and I finally made that dream a reality last weekend at Dreamstate SoCal 2019. The 5th edition of this festival called all trance enthusiasts to the NOS Events Center in San Bernardino on November 22nd and 23rd. I’ve heard rumors of the incredible crowd, uplifting tunes, and beautiful ambiance that this trance haven encaptures every year, and after attending I can confidently say it exceeded all expectations.
Here are the top three reasons why I will be celebrating Trancegiving again next year:
The Trance Tunes
I’ve been a fan of trance and psytrance ever since I came into the EDM scene years ago. The idea of a festival where every stage will be playing an incredible sound that I usually don’t get to hear in abundance at bigger events had my excitement levels through the roof. Each day I had a few artists on my radar that I did not want to miss, but in between those sets my friends and I let ourselves wander to where the music called us over to get lost in the beats.
The first day was highlighted by Ace Ventura, Gentech, and Aly & Fila. My favorite set from day one was Astrix. With a rolling baseline of 138 bpm, his set really set the tone for what psytrance is all about. High intensity beats made you feel like you were going warped speed on a spaceship, and we were all along for the ride.
The second day was more highly anticipated for me with the large amount of Ajunabeats artists present on the setlist. My low energy was immediately replenished during Oliver Smith’s set. The familiar beats drew in my crew and had us dancing throughout the whole show. My favorite sets from day two were Above & Beyond (of course) and Abraxis. This was my first time experiencing Above & Beyond at a festival and they lived up to the hype. Whether you were dancing with your friends, in the arms of a rave bae, or vibing by yourself, this two hour set transformed the atmosphere to one of the most euphoric and warmhearted sets I’ve ever experienced. I was astonished by Abraxis’ closing set. This new duo kept everyone on their toes with their experimental mix of psytrance and sneaking in some heavier beats along the way.
The Outstanding Ambiance
Walking into the NOS Event Center during an Insomniac festival is always a sight to behold, but walking into Dreamstate was on a whole different level. Blue, white, and pink lights were strung across the entire venue, casting a soft purplish hue over every surface not already illuminated by the stage lights. The NOS lake reflected the glowing lights from below as the water rippled from the three huge fountains that acted as the welcome sign to this utopian world. Dozens of shining cybernetic crystals sprung from the grounds, creating a perfect backdrop for anyone wanting to take photos and document a small portion of their time spent at this uplifting event.
Dreamstate hosted three stages, all equally impressive with their visual production and euphoric sounds. The Vision acted as a warm oasis away from the cold November air. An incredible multi-ring structure hung from the ceiling casting colored lights across the crowd. The Sequence was the home of psytrance heaven. I found myself being pulled back to this stage for the most psychedelic sets of the weekend. The Dream rightfully held the title of the main stage. Huge screens projected changing images of statues, lyrics, and utopian landscapes throughout each set. It acted as the perfect beacon to draw the whole trance fam together and vibe to our favorite artists. Oh, and did I mention the lasers? Getting lost underneath their atmospheric light did not disappoint!
The Most Incredible Vibes
I feel like a broken record when I say this, but this festival had some of the most incredible people in attendance, seriously. I’ve heard a few rumors about the trance community being incredibly amicable and bubbly, and experiencing the Dreamers at this event first hand validated that for me. I have never felt so welcomed into a family more than willing to share in the music and vibes they love the most. It truly felt like coming home to a reunion.
The Dreamstate performers were another huge highlight of the weekend. The shining zero gravity acrobats were entertaining enough to watch by themselves, but having the main stage centered behind them was the cherry on top of their performance. The luminescent cyber angels and other performers strolling through the festival grounds really brought the utopian society to life.
Photo Courtesy of Dreamstate
I’m so glad I made it out to celebrate Dreamstate 2019 with my crew. Not only did we make some great new memories and listen to mind-blowing music, we met some amazing people to share them with as well. If you’re a fan of trance, I highly recommend adding Dreamstate SoCal to your festival bucket list for 2020!