Tingting Wu

Das Energi Brings Huge Surprises to Utah (DMNW Review)

Being from the Pacific Northwest, we don’t know what “Utah Weather” is; at Das Energi last weekend, we found out…the hard way.

Taking place on the sands of the Great Salt Lake, V2’s Das Energi Festival is the biggest electronic music festival encompassing the Beehive State. This year’s edition featured a ridiculously stacked lineup spread across two days. Lead by Pacific Northwest favorites Dillon Francis, Kaskade, Rezz, and the legendary Deadmau5, Das 18 had a little something for everyone. It was Mother Nature, though, who tried stealing the show, creating mass chaos on day one. Despite the madness, the Energi never left the Great Saltair– making for one of the most memorable festivals we’ve been to this Summer. Let’s break down the action, shall we?

Location

Das Energi takes place at the Great Salt Air, located roughly 20 minutes away from downtown Salt Lake City. Parking is available on-site for $10, and there are also shuttles and ride shares to take you to and from the city.

Photo: Tingting Wu

Set-Up

There are three stages, all nicely spaced so far apart that bleeding sounds weren’t much of an issue. One stage was inside the Great Salt Air Music Hall itself, and the other two were outdoors. We had plenty of room to dance at each stage, but navigating to the indoor stage became an issue as the main outdoor stage started to fill. You had to move through the crowd to get indoors- no ifs, ands, or buts about it.

The Music

Bass, trance, house- Das Energi covered all of EDM’s many sub-genres. We were also treated to 1788-L’s festival debut, and NGHTMRE b2b Snails for the first time ever! Other standout sets include the four aforementioned headliners, Seattle’s own SHARPs going back-to-back with Salt Lake heroes Fransis Derelle and Toothpick, GG MaGree, and NGHTMRE’s solo set.

Photo: Tingting Wu

Photo: Tingting Wu

Chaos Strikes as the Weather Rages

On the first day, a storm hit the festival, and gusts caused the smallest stage, the Galatic Flats, to partially collapse due to these high gusts.

As the storm worsened, the second outdoor stage shut down minutes into K?D’s set (three hours after the gates opened). Fans retreated into the indoor stage, where Anjunabeats up-and-comer Spencer Brown was playing an extended set after fellow Anjuna labelmate Andrew Bayer pulled out of the lineup after falling ill.

It didn’t take long for festival organizers to cut Spencer Brown’s set and announce a weather delay. Fans were advised to wait in their cars, to which most refused – staying inside the indoor arena, which quickly became overcrowded.

The delay lasted three hours, and during the wait, fans broke out into random chants. It was a sight to behold- the festival had been shut down, but the energy never left the grounds.

To make up for lost time, the festival extended its hours to 3 AM. The delay affected some sets, but fans were able to catch the big names of day 1: Dillon Francis, Kaskade, What so Not, just to name a few. Unfortunately, the Galatic Salt Flats Stage remained closed but was open for business come day 2.

There’s not much you can do about the weather but we commend V2’s response as the situation unfolded.

Photo: Tingting Wu

Biggest Surprise

Utah has some headbangers! We’ve been to many non-Northwest festivals this year, but the crowd at Das was as loud and raucous as the ones we are familiar with in our region. Necks were definitely broken last weekend.

Photo: Tingting Wu

Verdict

The weather situation was unfortunate, but hey, what can you do? Das delivered with a strong lineup, and its location is easily one of our favorite venues. You have to be there and see it for yourself! We’re already counting down the days to Das Energi 2019.

Photo: Tingting Wu

Did you go to Das Energi 2018? What were your favorite sets, or moments? Let us know in the comments below!