When one attends Sonic Bloom it might as well be a happy trip to a little model of utopia. Of all the festivals I have personally been to, Sonic Bloom’s amazing display last year certified it as one of most cohesive, beautiful, smooth and purely friendly gatherings out there. I had heard great things, and the experience trumped them all. Sonic Bloom’s subtitle for this year is “The Unified Field”, in reference to Nassim Haramein’s teachings and Jamie Janover’s excellent conveyance of them; but there is another meaning to this title for me, and it is the unification of all the aspects of transformational gathering culture into a fully immersive and authentic experience. From the Colorado scenery to the fans to the overall atmosphere and aesthetic to the music to the many offerings present, Sonic Bloom is a fest and a feast for the soul, the mind, the heart; and a very unique feeling one at that. It is one of those festivals that carries with it a magic and an air of joyousness that goes far beyond any one of the standout elements, a gathering that feels whole, complete and totally worthwhile. With this years lineup and offerings, we are in for another amazing time.
Sonic Bloom took, in my opinion, an amazing leap of confidence and seriously welcome innovation when they debuted their full lineup. Its not because of the amazing acts present, in fact its just the opposite. Sonic Bloom booked almost no acts that were present last year (just 5 or 6). That is awesome! And what’s more awesome is the incredible lineup that has resulted. This lineup is just pure FUN:
The happy hard-hitting world-renowned Australian glitch-hop headliner Opiou. The soul-touching subtle stylings of Bluetech (and an uptempo set under his other name, Evan Marc). The extremely talented and explosively fun band The Werks. Rare appearances by Whitebear, LYNX and Lucent Dossier Experience. Lesser known and simply amazing Australian acts such as GOOSEBUMPZ. Time-honored bastions of the culture like Desert Dwellers, Govinda, Akara, Random Rab, Adham Shaikh, the list really does just go on and on and on. In terms of the styles of music present there is a comfortable variety here, hard-hitters and chillout masters, a great range of tempos and styles. But there is one thing that all the music of Sonic Bloom has in common, and that is that it is of the utmost quality of production and live presentation. All of these performers, like the ethereal and beautiful Akara, have splendid stage presence, and create truly fresh and original music, spread across many different styles. Also, the lineup of painters is great as always, these are true visionaries creating a new paradigm of expression, and their work re:expresses the feelings of these gatherings, re:creates and intimates the symbology of this culture, and also serves as a reference point for the truth that this culture is engaging in a renaissance of creative potential and output.
Moving past the music, the real meat of Sonic Bloom, or should I say the real nectar of Sonic Bloom, comes clear. There is a lot to take in, so lets start on the stage performance. Sonic Bloom always includes extensive and constant displays of amazing stage performance. Wether it be dancing, fire or toys, the flow arts at this festival really make the sets something special. Furthermore, Sonic Bloom does not skimp on the quality of the performers (I mean, what’s worse than a stage “performer” that just looks like a drunk fan?). These are world-class artists of movement, so prepare to be impressed. Moving on from that there is an entire world of workshops and yoga and movement offerings for participants. From astrological work with Adam Sommer to Earthship classes with Baron Kinder, the workshop lineup is truly stellar and covers a lot of topics and areas of learning and experience. Last year I found myself stumbling across offerings that really opened my mind and heart, and that inspired me spiritually as well. One interesting offering this year that I will have to attend is being given by the musician Temple Step, and it is a Sound Activation experience that “fuses self created sound design, live FX processing with sacred audio
from a diverse range of mediums such as binaural and holosync sounds, recordings of outer space by NASA, monks, shaman’s and sound healers.” Being a huge fan of sound healing, this one is for me; and since there is a fairly wide array of topics covered at Sonic Bloom, I suspect that everyone will have a “hey this one is for me” moment looking at the workshop lineup. Focusing, as it has in recent years, on quality over quantity, Sonic Bloom’s workshop lineup gives everyone’s interest just enough service. Looks like once again I will have to find a way to recharge without sleep after the epic sunrise sets so that I can nourish my mind and soul during morning workshops.
As a final note, the overall aesthetic of Sonic Bloom must be mentioned. Simply put, the festival is beautiful. Hardworking hands deliver inspired and engaging stage designs (and word around the rumor mill is that a new stage is going where the Buddha Lounge was last year, the people putting it on are a great crew as well); mandalas and art installations abound; spaces and places of interest as well as beautiful and friendly natural surroundings inspire epic relaxation and intimate connection among friends new and old. The truth is that one of the hallmarks of the transformational multi-faceted festival movement is beautification and re:creation of space, and from what I have seen at Sonic Bloom, this gathering absolutely nails it.
So there you go, if you didn’t know already then you should have an inkling as to what Sonic Bloom is: one of the most beautiful, multi-faceted and well run festivals on the planet. If you have been on the fence about attending, go ahead and find the time and the funds. Price your travel, get a ticket, and come join an all star crew of musicians, artists, spaces and a seriously welcoming crowd that stretches well beyond Colorado, for a weekend of fun, learning, and life-changing experiences.
-Edwin John Leskin