Melt – It’s the time of the year, when the city of iron is blooming and people from all over the world are coming together to celebrate a weekend full of music, love, passion and art.
DAY 1 at Melt festival just started as usual – collecting our wristbands, building our camp for the next three days and making it a home. It’s always an incredible feeling to arrive at Ferropolis, which is an old industrial peninsula near Dessau (Saxony-Anhalt), with pleasant anticipation for the entire set-up and of course, a nicely mixed line-up. Excited for the festival site we took the shuttle bus and arrived at the location, wondering what it might look like this year. We quickly noticed that the organisers hand changed the stages and compared to the last two years we’ve been to Melt and this really captured our curiosity. Melt 2018 had just one main stage, which is formally known as Melt Stage, in the centre of the location. There’s another big stage, called Meltselektor, at Gremmin beach. We found the Big Wheel (stage) where it’s supposed to be, the Sensi Stage in a tiny forest, the Superdry Sounds (stage) and the Forest Stage in a wonderful, trippy forest and surrounded by art installations. Of course, for all of the 24/7 dancers and non-sleepers there was the infamous Sleepless Floor in front of the entrance, outside of the area. We didn’t stay long but we did take a quick peek.
As interesting and as exciting exploring the peninsula and the set-up was, our highlights were without doubt the artists. To be honest, we didn’t have so many on our list as the line-up was a bit different than it was in previous years. We felt the lineup was focused less on indie and rock music and that this year, it was a bit more electronic. On our list for Friday, we only had Cigarettes After Sex, the exclusive and only German show this year of Florence + The Machine and Yellow Days. But it didn’t matter, the shows were mind-blowing and it was more than enough great entertainment for one evening. Throughout the day, we caught a bit of this and that from the other stages and generally, immersed ourselves in the vibe watching stylishly dressed festival-goers and up and coming, exciting bands. We really enjoyed our first day at Melt.
It was the 21st edition of Melt and as climate change is becoming more and more of a thing that seems to affect us in our daily life, people were literally melting in the heat of the sun. But hey, we don’t wanna complain about nice weather and a hot summer, do we?!
With sunburn on our backs, we started off DAY 2 in style and we were excited to see Rex Orange County, Who Made Who and Odesza. This was a full on day of music with other great artists like Fever Ray, Alma, Hundreds, Gurr and Apparat (DJ set) playing. The festival-site opened it’s doors at 4pm to all the music lovers as per usual. But this year was different, there were also the football fans. It was a festival inside a festival when Belgium played against England and won 2:0 in the World Cup 3rd place playoff. The screams of Belgian fans could be heard soaring over Gremmin beach and whilst English fans were a bit more sombre, anyone not following the football would have assumed that they had won after ‘Footballs coming home’ started being chanted across the site. The Melt party continued and the site was full with happy, smiling people reveling in the great music and sunshine.
Our main highlight of the day for us was spending time with the German print magazine INTRO, who had set up an auto scooter that had a DJ booth next to it. They were there to say thank you and goodbye to all their readers and with tears in our eyes, we were dancing to the sounds of our favourite DJ’s from Berlin, A Design For Life. It’s truly a shame that a magazine like INTRO needs to say goodbye after more than 27 years of reporting about music, culture and lifestyle. But, in these times of social media and the world wide web, it’s a hard world for print magazines to thrive in. It’s a common trend that we’ve been seeing in recent times and we are really sad about it. We want to say thank you INTRO for all of your hard work, expertise and love you were showing us over the past 27 years. We still remember your bombastic 25th birthday bash at Huxleys Neue Welt in Berlin and we will never forget your outstanding reviews and great taste in music – thanks for being such a trusty buddy!
With headaches and smiles, we woke up to DAY 3 of Melt festival, which marks the last day of this very unique European festival. It’s not just that 20.000 people came together in Ferropolis to celebrate life, it’s the special location, the diverse line-up and the magical vibe that makes each and every single Melt festival a spectacular event. On this last day we were dancing to Parcels, Erobique, Little Dragon, BadBadNotGood, Mura Masa and last but not least The XX. It’s hard to deny that The XX had one of the best, and most spectacular light shows and compared to their set at last years Lollapalooza Berlin, they seemed more confident with their whole stage appearance. The XX headlined Sunday and were able to pack the entire area in front of the Melt Stage. This wasn’t just with people, but also with love. Especially when Romy Madley Croft played her acoustic solo and Oliver Sim said some wise words in support of pride and free love. As Jamie Smith, better known as Jamie XX, is an old Melt fellow, his solo set brought the people into ecstasy. It was the perfect closing act as a Sunday headliner at Melt 2018.
We found an official Melt after movie in cooperation with Colours, which truly shows off all the pretty facets of Melt festival. From the city of iron to the mysterious and trippy woods, the lake Gremmin and it’s beach, love and passion, confetti and fire, this video is the perfect summary of all of the above. Lean back and enjoy!
Once again, ARTE Concert was on location to broadcast a selected number of concerts. All videos are available here: http://concert.arte.tv/de/melt
A Best of Melt 2018 will be broadcasted by ARTE on August 31, 2018.
Unfortunately we didn’t get a chance to take some portraits in the photo pit this year, but here are our highlights from last years Melt!
M.I.A. live at Melt 2017 shot by Juliane Johannes
Glass Animals live at Melt 2017 shot by Juliane Johannes
Warpaint live at Melt 2017 shot by Juliane Johannes
The Lemon Twigs live at Melt 2017 shot by Juliane Johannes
Von Wegen Lisbeth live at Melt 2017 shot by Juliane Johannes
Bilerbuch live at Melt 2017 shot by Juliane Johannes
A massive thank you to all of our constant readers and followers, listeners to our playlists, all the lovely and motivating things you said, the opportunities we were given, the mails we’re getting every day, every like and heart, to all of you artists who already worked with us and at least for sharing the art and love with us! Also a huge THANK YOU to all the agencies, labels and managements for given us various opportunities and for making our journey something exciting and special.
We are beyond words and deeply grateful for all the love and support we received since we started smoke and echoes back in February 2016 and wanna say thank you to every single one of you!
We know that we’ve been a bit quiet these last few months due for a variety of reasons and we’re really sorry about that, but we’re trying our very best to feed you with loads of ear and eye candy very soon!
Stay tuned, keep ya ears and eyes peeled and follow us on our journey through this wonderful world of music, fashion, art, passion and love!
xx smoke and echoes