Dive into the heart-pounding beats and electrifying moments of ARC Music Festival! From sensational headliners to immersive visuals, ARC delivered an unforgettable musical journey that left attendees buzzing with excitement. The festival’s stunning location and expertly curated lineup set the stage for an epic weekend filled with dancing, connection, and pure euphoria. ARC Music Festival, where music and memories unite, is a must-experience event for any electronic music enthusiast. Join us in reliving the magic of ARC!
ARC Music Festival Recap
I eat, sleep, and breathe house and techno music. When I first heard of the opportunity to attend the ARC music festival this year, I was ecstatic. The lineup was insane, and I was so ready for it. I had zero expectations for the festival, which made it all the better. In its third year, ARC astounded those new and old to house and techno music.
As soon as I stepped off the Ashland pink line L stop on day one I knew I was in for a treat, as the hard bassline of whoever was playing captured my attention. What I didn’t know was how incredible the experience was going to be. My friends and I started the day off a little bit later, around 4 PM. As we entered the park, we were astounded by the transformation of the park from essentially a children’s playground to a full-blown art installation.
We searched for the expansions stage, where Mall Grab and KETTAMA were set to play, and ended up wandering around the park for some time. Instead of seeing Mall Grab like we planned (Mall Grab ended up playing later in the day, and not at the expected set time), we made our way over to Elrow, which was a large covered tent in the east corner of the park.
Elrow was by far where I spent the most time at the festival. Bearing witness to the talents of James Hype, Ilario Alicante, Vintage Culture, and others was spectacular but the experience was even more so. Every hour or so performers dressed in wacky costumes came out both on stage and in the crowd, making the set interactive and even more fun.
When you thought that was it, at the bass drop every so often there would be confetti and streamers coming down from the heavens which enhanced the experience even more. There was so much love, laughter, and dancing in this tent I could’ve stayed there for the rest of my life.
After leaving Elrow, my friends and I were on a quest for water as we were quite parched from dancing the night away. At some points finding the water refill station felt harder than trying to find the Bermuda Triangle. They were tucked away in the corner by one of the two restroom areas. As there were no maps on the premises (as far as I could tell) it became difficult to navigate at some points, especially if like me, your phone wasn’t working amongst the swarms of people. Eventually, as the festival went on and muscle memory kicked in, it became easier to find the places to stay hydrated.
Courtesy of ARC Music Festival // KURSZA
By far, one of the most incredible experiences of my life was seeing one of my all-time favorites, Fatboy Slim. What made it twice as good was seeing him at sunset. The Grid stage for most of the day was a sauna as the stage faced West and there wasn’t much coverage to stay out of the sun. Nevertheless, the experience of being able to dance my booty off with amazing people was an experience I’ll never forget.
The times when we were sitting down and relaxing were few and far between, but when we were it was a little bit of a challenge. Unlike most festivals, there weren’t areas where you could go to escape the music. Even the portapotties were shaking from the reverb of the bass. The only major qualm I had was that the sound leakage was very intense and overstimulating. In many of the open areas where there was shade and a place to sit, you could hear three out of the four stages at once, which was unpleasurable. How can this problem be resolved to ensure the continued enjoyment of one of the country’s top parties? The solution could involve either changing the location or reducing the number of stages. One promising approach would be to search for a larger venue that could accommodate stages at greater distances, effectively minimizing sound interference. A potential venue to consider might be Douglass Park, the site of Heatwave, due to its larger area and potential suitability.
Sound leakage issues aside, ARC was still one hell of a party! Peggy Gou killed it at her set at sunset, followed by Tale of Us, which had incredible graphics and sound. Overall, this year’s ARC was one to remember, and needless to say, you can catch me partying hard at Elrow at next year’s festival.