[Event Review] Why Mysteryland USA Is The Festival Of The Future
Mysteryland is the longest-running dance festival, and Mysteryland USA is quickly becoming the festival of the future. The festival blends art & culture, diverse musical talent, unbelievable food and a tight-knit community on the former grounds of the legendary Woodstock Festival.
We experienced this unique festival this past Memorial Day Weekend, and had a chance to speak with some of the artists before their sets. During the three-day festival we spoke with South African electronic band Goldfish, hardstyle veteran Audiofreq, rising star Mekanikal, trap-stars GTA & CRNKN, and producer-turned electronic band leader Netsky. The whole festival was an incredible experience and we’ll share with you the Top 5 Reasons Why Mysteryland Is The Festival Of The Future.
Reason #1: Diversity of Music
If there’s one thing Mysteryland excels at, it’s pulling together a lineup that touches every aspect of electronic music and caters to the wide range of festival-goers tastes.
In the course of three days we heard hardstyle, trap, house, live bands, drum & bass, and everything in between.
This sort of lineup is a refreshing break from the Top 100-based lineups of some other popular music festivals, where big room drops are the main attraction.
Mysteryland’s variety of acts reflects the same mission as the Woodstock Festival that came before it, and opened a lot of festival-goers eyes to new music, and entire new genres.
Reason #2: The Culture (Diversity of People)
The only thing more varied than the actual music was the community at the festival. People of all countries and ages came to experience Mysteryland this year. We even met a couple attendees from the original Woodstock festival, returning to the grounds for a new generation of music.
Mysteryland’s decision to go 21+ helped keep the community focused on the music, art, and good vibes of the festival rather than just the drops and drugs. After only a few hours at Bethel Woods it was clear that people were there to truly appreciate the music and art more than anything.
Reason #3: Location, Location, Location
There’s no place more appropriate to host a festival like Mysteryland than the original Woodstock grounds. Woodstock embodied the same mission as Mysteryland: a sense of freedom and expression. Though we didn’t camp this year, camping adds a personal touch to the experience on top of the festival itself.
Watching Diplo move a crowd the same way Jimi Hendrix did decades ago is something special and exclusive to the Mysteryland experience. The feeling of isolation in upstate New York also made the festival a more intimate event, where miles of trees and hills replaced what is usually freeways and buildings.
Reason #4: Art Installations
Everywhere you went during the festival, there was some sort of funky art installation to catch your eye. In the course of three days we saw two giant bears, numerous walls of graffiti, a life-size game of Mousetrap, a dome of fire, and a frog/go-kart/disco-jukebox hybrid, to name a few.
If you needed a break from the music there were countless art installations to keep you occupied. Mysteryland is shaping up to be the festival of the future because it’s more than just a music festival – it’s a collection of art.
Reason #5: Stages
Mysteryland did a great job of keeping the stages as interesting as the artists performing on them.
The Boat housed mostly the heavy bass music of the festival in a massive steamboat, complete with a top deck that looked out on the crowd.
There were two big top circus-style tents for the club and hardstyle end of the lineup, and the mainstage consisted of two massive horses overlooking the hill.
Mysteryland did not hold back on the theatrics this year – the stages, pyrotechnics, lasers, and sound systems were all on point and created a mesmerizing experience for everyone there.
From the moment we arrived until the moment we left, there was an overwhelming amount of peace, love, unity, and respect coming from every attendee and staff member. The happiest and most welcoming of vibes were radiating throughout the entire festival, and Mysteryland USA definitely made history in Woodstock all over again.
AJR — Andrew Rauner // @AJR_photos for Mysteryland
DLG — Danilo Lewis for Mysteryland
JL — Jackie Lee for Mysteryland
JT — Joey Timmer | pikzelz for Mysteryland
JC — Julian Cassady for Mysteryland
TD — tomdoms.com for Mysteryland