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Adventures at Springfestival

Adventures at Springfestival Since I came to Vienna ten years ago and got into electronic music shortly thereafter, I also got into the habit of visiting the Springfestival on a regular basis. For twelve years now, the Springfestival has established itself as probably the most important festival for electronic music in Austria (and certainly the most likeable). It takes place in the lovely city of Graz. Named the Cultural Capital of Europe 2003 and part of the UNESCO World Heritage since 1999, Graz has lots of great concert locations to offer like Dom im Berg, a huge cavern turned into a venue. But the most important thing of course is the line-up! Every day the crème de la crème of modern dance music make it really hard to create plans for the night without being at two places at the same time.

Every year me and lots of other like-minded kids end up coming together at Meidling without the need for scheduling or appointment-making. Some carry huge boxes with pounds of vinyl and others bring their computers and tape recorders. On the other hand, some don’t bother to pack anything for the upcoming four days of heavy partying aside from ‘tour support’ (as Mike Skinner put it in one of his records). No matter what sort of partygoers the people I ran into may have been, the party itself has always been united under one banner: the love for electronic music and all it’s sub-genres. One of the guys I always encounter also happens to be a good friend of mine. Together with Wolfram, Felix Fuchs – aka Felix the Houserat (no misspelling here!) hosts the monthly club series E-Nix Gang Bang, and is also (in some way) connected to Red Bull. Don’t ask me what his exact job description might be – nobody seems to know, probably not even Felix or his boss at Red Bull. Needless to say, Felix has more than a couple of tales to tell from his spring times spent in Graz, of which he decided to share a few below.

As far as I remember, I have been at every single Springfestival since 2001. Over the course of the last eleven years I might have missed a handful of days; they must have been Saturdays, because after three days of going out, the fourth is always hard to stand through.

Most times it has been really great – in fact, I can’t remember any bad moments at all. That doesn’t necessarily mean there weren’t any, I just can’t remember them (and maybe that’s a good thing). But I definitely remember the good times! One of the absolute craziest nights was in 2009 at Dom im Berg, when 2manydjs played. Honestly, I think it’s quite boring what they do and even back then they weren’t new or exciting at all. Somehow, though, they managed to turn Dom im Berg upside down that night. They even played Thomas Gottschalk and the show ended with ‘Happy Birthday’ by Laima Leyton and a drum session by Igor Cavalera, who were next with their DJ project Mixhell. Later that night an eleven pound jar of Nutella was being eaten backstage and Wolfram’s then-girlfriend disappeared in a gap between the stage. I know this all sounds a bit like a fairytale, but that’s what makes a magical night.

A not so great experience was DJing after Patrick Wolf last year. I guess he wasn’t in a great mood that night and neither was I since I had to DJ after his concert in front of about 50 people, when there was space for 100 times that many. But anyway, Springfestival is great and I’m looking forward to going there this year (like all the years before). I’m most excited about our Red Bull Music Academy night with Scuba, the new Drums of Death show, and of course Amon Tobin! And I never miss getting vanilla ice cream with pumpkin seed oil at least once.

Be sure not to miss the opening night of Springfestival, when Electronic Beats will be opening the party with Amon Tobin!

Published April 11, 2012.