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HARD Music Festival

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The Top 3 Identity Festival Acts in Charlotte, NC

This list is admittedly genre-centric and compiled without witnessing every set (there were three stages). Nevertheless, here we go...

Number Three: Leon

I had the pleasure finding a new artist, Leon, and with a unforgettable sunset we met. While everywhere else at the festival artists were driving beats as hard as they could, Leon played deep melodic pads with futuristic bass lines. This forward-thinking set took place on the Advent stage. Here, Leon translated the sunset sonically to the lucky few that stuck around for this mature ride. In fact, Leon became his own genre here, throwing away traditional sounding tech-house form and playing with emotional and experimental house. This is the beauty of underground dance music; usually the best music occurs when the hype isn't around and comes unexpected. Consider this the sleeper set of the entire festival.

Number Two: Booka Shade

It felt so good to hear their classics, with live acoustic, keyboard, synths and more. Walter Merziger and Arno Kammermeier gave it all for us while maintaining a high energy level and command over their audience. Booka Shade really set the tone for the festival. They performed material that has made them famous while also teaching newcomers a unique genre of sound.

Number One: Modeselektor

The fashion in which these boys delivered their music was wild, groovy, bassy, with a touch of glitch and a dash of trip. It all went down under the hot sun on the Dim Mak stage where Gernot Bronsert, Sebastian Szary and another, who goes unnamed, gave it to us raw and uncut. You could tell that these guys were having a great time performing. These characters were witty and uniquely theatercal. Imagine a techno-play with singing, dancing, perversion, oddity and über coolness.


Modeselector was reallly good, he really knows how to work a crowd. I missed most of Booka Shade tho :<
Modeselector was special indeed : ) For Booka Shade, look up their "Movements" album. They played most of that.. and you can probably find it free.