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Happy goes to Psyfari!

Have you ever been to Capertee? Let me describe it for you, the second largest canyon in the world, beautiful orange cliff faces, rugged brown and green landscapes, frosty clean air and the unmistakable sounds of pulsating trance music dancing off the Teatrees.

Psyfari

Well, that is what Capertee was like last weekend. Psyfari Festival took over a local farm just north of Lithgow and the musical talent displayed was phenomenal. Dressed in tie-dye, and adorned with feathers, face paint and animal masks the festival goers squelched their way through paddocks to soak up some sweet, sweet tunes. The intimate festival had three stages nestled in the Canyon each offering a range of floor stomping genres.

Zoolu stage was the little corner pumping more glitch, techno and dub than you can poke a stick at. The night kicked off next to the giant campfire, under hanging mobiles of dream catchers and totem poles. Positioned furthest from the campsite due to the sheer size of its speakers and the rib-shaking vibrations pounding from the bass was Life Cycle – a huge butterfly DJ booth providing a one stop prog trance and psy party floor. This is where the serious dirt kicking, hand clapping and head banging happened. My personal favourite, however, was Stampede. Adorned with a giant chicken and next to the Toucan croquet lawn, this stage is where live music took flight.

With Friday night came Brotherfunk who shook the paddock with their big seven-piece band sound. The crowd did not hold back in their dancing as they were engulfed in those fantastic ska, reggae and funk rhythms. Big props to the lead female vocalist Rachel Shead whose belt took the party to a new level. Hailing from the Blue Mountains I would highly encourage you all to seek these guys out if you are looking for a dance and to witness some serious musical talent.

Saturday saw a great line up of Australian musicians with dexterous fingers producing beautiful flamenco guitar from Kallidad and catchy hip shaking grooves from Babushka doll lookalike band, Edema Ruh. But despite this fabulous company Saturday night was all about one band. Wild Marmalade. This was evidently the band that was most anticipated by not only the festival goers but also the other performers. The fact they arrived an hour late only increased the crowd’s anticipation. This anticipation was not met with disappointment as Wild Marmalade delivered an hour of uniquely Australian dance music.

The duo of Si Mullumby on the Didgeridoo and Matt Goodwin on the drum kit were joined by Tijuana Cartel’s Paul George, who complimented their original flavour with his flamenco guitar. The threesome improvised their mesmerising style of contemporary didj dance music achieving the same rhythm, pace and sound as many synthesised songs you might have heard one stage over. They, however, surpassed these songs in energy and talent as the threesome spun a frenzied web of musical mayhem.

The connection between band and audience was electrified as inhibitions disappeared and the mosh-pit writhed. This is the only band to instigate a complete disregard for the stone boom built a few feet in front of the stage, as dancers clambered over and onto it to close the distance between them and the wonderful anomaly occurring in front of their eyes.

Considering it is a relatively new festival Psyfari did an exceptional job of rounding up a wide ranging, well respected and exceptionally talented group of Australian musicians and DJs.

All organisers must be praised for producing an eco-friendly and environmentally sustainable festival that was both intimate and adventurous. The count down is on for next year’s festival so decline that two-for-one degustation you just got emailed for next August and come run with the Wild Things at Psyfari.

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