Lalala la Munkeys!! I am officially Sunburnt, danced out and not brain dead enough to wish each one of you seething dance souls a very Happy New Year.

May the pumping bass lines, tinkling synths and catchy breakdowns carry us collectively forward in to the spanking new music horizon of 2012.
So getting down to the burning business at hand of Sunburn; arguably Asia’s biggest electronic dance music festival got underway and I was right there on the sands of Candolim to experience some of my most insanely emotive moments to close the year down. Whether the festival is the most fertile ground for cutting edge dance music are debatable, hats off though to Percept for pulling in a record number in the 3 days of its 5th year, at once impressive and unprecedented indeed.
With the festival’s day time programming and the cream of the dance music crop at the night time sessions of Afterdark; has music fiends flocking from all over the world like never before. From the 27th-29th December, it’s a place to network, catch new artists and old along-with a plethora of fringe parties springing up around the city during festival time, the fact that Goa is such a vivaciously vibrant city it’s no wonder that Sunburn has become an unmissable part of the dance calendar for many.

I hate to be granny miserable but there are a few points I need to rave and rant about- I love an experience of musical talent, mix it up with visual grandeur to the maddening throngs gathered for one cause which is Sunburn, but here goes the spiral heading downwards…. To be greeted with an assortment of insects as the theme goes, in ostentatious finery was by far an eye sore with unimaginative names attached to each arena. I don’t know whether I want to include Coollu the sweet owl looking over us who endeared. So seriously to the powers that be I along with many others missed the sleekness of the earlier years. The look and feel was electric back then.

Me monkey felt quite soggy jouled seeing these mammoth insectizoids in fancy dress…the festival felt more like a circus gone wonky…this was no Alice in Wonderland!!

I did have a giggle with all that walking between Plot A and B got me killer calf muscles..I heard like a zillion peeps complaining and groaning about it, for gawds sake I mean we are at a festival which requires one to get down right dirty and dancing, so if one has to walk to get to the guy whose flown  thousands of miles to entertain you, then damn walk to get there.
To move along, if there is a mother of all clobber points, then it is definitely looking towards the artist programming. The show flow left me cold. I was often scurrying to catch some of the more prolific acts who all seemed to be slotted all at once and at other times I had no choice at all.
Another sore point was the artist slots; with a bit of clever planning one can easily vanquish the argument of does a big room Dj with big room sounds change his style and pace to suit the slot the artist is at to create a bit of a journey through the day, or does one just come and burn it all up with the following act with a lesser pace dropping it down and no one really cares… Beats me hollow…
There were some artists who were outstandingly mediocre, plus the much awaited sets of two top quality djs Pete Tong and Nic Fanciulli nearly turned out duds. I am not sure if I want to beat myself for being indifferent to the Global Underground legend Nic Fanciulli’s set, it was border line could’ve touched good, Pete Tong got boring and was unlike what he can do which is usually exciting.
To get to the part where it was all worth it; cutting edge wonders were churned out by Helium Project with his warm underground sounds, a perfect opening for the Perfect Stranger beauteousness. Tocadisco and Junior Jack/ Kid Crème were funtastic.
The real storm turned out to be Spartaque though; he was beautifully young and energetic. As far as I am concerned the Cubezoid stage on Day 2 with Spartaque was an education and a defining set securing a place in the hearts of clubbers present. He gave us the most reckless workout with his driving bass filled Techno and not to forget his all smiles presence. I didn’t have the requisite courage to leave his arena to catch Laughing Buddha next door.
Moguai and X P Voodoo were next level super super electronic gods with attitude and musical sensibilities all in place. Sunburn got the timing right with these two artists.
Ankytrixx played like a brave soldier at the Psychedelic arena at a dodgy time, but the boy wonder with the Midas touch packed in a considerable crowd very quickly. As always he was progressively stomping. Clement was groovylicious during sundown, he did nearly split my cranium with the mother of a closing set at Afterdark, Butter- Sir, take a bow!! His set was razor sharp and devoid of any inhibitions, just like his rib tickling humor.
Ah! The long lost art of playing vinyls with the showmanship. My personal highlight of Sunburn 2011 godly aggravation reached an all new musical high with Sanjay Dutta playing Classic Trance at Afterdark, Butter. I revisited the super clubbing days of the late 90’s and early 2000 with a euphoric, melodic, bouncy and mind-numbing all put in to one large ball of blissed out hands in the air nostalgia of dance fun.  I feel complete after this goliath outing by us and the Beast from the East.
A special mention to Dan Booth, your visuals were sorely missed.
Sets by Axwell, Infected Mushroom, Skazi, Above & Beyond, Liquid Soul, Jerome Ismae, Gabriel and Dresden to name some packed up at their arenas as expected with sing along friendly sounds. The crowds so obviously packed up for the big labels like Defected & Toolroom Knights like never before.
Poor sound at my favorite Cubezoid stage was no fun at all, in fact its quite unacceptable, as Skazi struggled too at the Psychedelic stage. If you want to throw a good party, have kick the guts sound me thinks.
Oh well, Percept takes risks and gets away with being the omnipotent bastion of hosting mighty like Sunburn. My urge to get communal and heinously twisted hasn’t diminished with the Sunburn 2011 edition one bit. As a serious music lover, I am excited and optimistic as ever for the future the festival brings me.
With an irrational love for the beats, I move on to stretching my limbs to a pot-pourri of extra-ordinary talent further North as we get in to January action. Tell you all about the hopping sooner I get my brains back.
I leave you cheery heads with a mixed set, by an artist who is rising in meteoric fashion in the dance radar and his sets are munkiness personified, so here goes…
Download- Sunburn 2011 by Helium Project
Till then stay intensified munkies!
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