From last 18th to 19th of August, no less than 6000 festivalgoers attended Voltage Festival in the region of Zwevegem. After 4 years only this event managed to establish itself as one of the best techno festivals in Belgium. Let us look back at this 4th edition’s great success.
A power station as scenery…
For the 4th consecutive year Voltage Festival took place in a century-old abandoned power plant, which created a unique, industrial atmosphere.
In 2000 the European government protected the station and its surroundings due to its historical significance. Electricity production stopped in 2001 but it is in 2014 only that the city bought the building for cultural purposes.
The festival exploits both the inside and the outside and offers three stages, two of which are main ones. One is inside in a room made of concrete and high ceilings, which immerse oneself in a Berlin-like atmosphere. The other one is outside, beneath a bunch of high-voltage lines.
The scenery is unique; every detail is thought out to fit as much as possible the industrial setting of the site which is also called Transfo.
Besides the venue, the festival’s strength is definitely its line-up. Thanks to the different stage hosts we could listen to artists performing from deep to industrial not to mention acid techno. In addition, the organisers are used to putting a flourishing local scene to the fore.
This year’s edition abode by the rule with nearly 20 Belgian artists. It is obviously tough to mention them all but we will remember strong performances that worth the headliners.
Within these gigs it is worth mentioning Siwei’s live on Ohm’s stage. The young producer, running his own label Siwei Recordings, performed a dark, hypnotic live, mixing strong ambient influences with a complex deep techno.
On the same stage Pilose gig is also worth mentioning. This young Belgian artist has had an impressive artistic path. Indeed, the artist is member of Ohm collective and runs both the festival’s and Form and Function label’s artistic direction.
Outside as well numerous Belgian artists were playing – such as Spacid, Endove, SP-X, Cellini, as well as Phara and Border One performing B2B. These Belgian artists are renowned for the quality of their production and musical research.
As for headliners, the line-up is specialized as well, following an underground logic for the liking of an exigent crowd. There were for everyone’s taste: from Boston 168’s acid soundings to the industrial techno of SHDW & Obscure Shapes and SLAM, or else Keith Carnal’s melodious techno. What is more, the timetable was very well thought out and the shows generally lasted two hours, which allowed the crowd to enjoy the set and to go from scene to scene without missing their favourite artists.
Once again, Voltage Festival kept its promises with a unique venue and atmosphere and a finest line-up. All these good points gathered both a local and international public mainly made of this genre’s lovers and connoisseurs. A public which, in the manner of the organizers, supports the local scene. Voltage Festival truly is a must-have experience. Rendezvous in 2019 for the next edition, not to be missed…
English translation : Raphaël Rozenberg Pictures : Simon LeLoup (1), Ruben Van Vreckem (2), Cédric Dhooghe (3), Simon Leloup (4), Ruben Van Vreckem (5)