AVA Festival 2018 Shines In New Warehouse Location

AVA Festival showed off its new location at S13 for what could be one of the festivals of the year.

| by | Features, News

AVA Festival. Audio Visual Arts. The last three years has been fantastic growing from a small time festival to one which has just held it’s fourth event in it’s brand new home at S13 Warehouse. AVA Festival 2018 was a festival to remember. This year it grew, this year it had a crowd that supported every artist that attended. This year it was a festival that has catapulted AVA Festival onto the list as one to attend each year.

AVA Conference 

One of the main parts of this year’s proceedings was the AVA Conference which takes place each year. This year the conference was held at the wonderful MAC venue in the city centre. Kicking things off was an opening speech from Sarah McBriar, the festival founder, who talked about the growth of the festival over the last few years. She touched on the dedication of the team to put it together and the dedication of those supporting who attended.

Following this was the opening keynote by Bicep. The Belfast duo have had an exception few years, especially with the release of their debut self-titled album. This was the focus of the keynote, as they dropped information on the techniques of their production work, how ‘Glue’ was a project from five years before the album, amongst other interesting topics. Oh and they revealed album number two will be happening at some point next year.

AVA Festival 2018 - Conference - conference_luke-joyce113

Amongst this, there was plenty of other conversations, tutorials and interesting debates taking place. Representatives from organisations such as the PRS For Music, Believe, Tunecore and Pioneer all descended upon The Mac. Key talks came from Kink who went into detail about his career, plus the musical pioneer Larry Heard finished off proceedings. It is certainly something which continues to help aspiring DJs and producers gain a foothold within a highly competitive industry. What was also a great factor within the AVA Conference was the closeness, and the detail which the panels went into. The attendees certainly felt included and there was plenty of time after each talk to grab a chat with those on the panel.

AVA Festival 2018

While attending the event, I overheard someone describe “B&Q was always like a Sunday Church service”. This was in reference to those pushing trolley’s around B&Q, boring, never buying anything and it always being so dull. This certainly wasn’t the case for the old B&Q site (now known as the S13 Warehouse) when AVA Festival turned up. The site was transformed to contain four major stages, each delivering some of the best local and international names, which is exactly what the festival aimed to do.  There was a number of key moments which must be highlighted.

“We are blown away by AVA this year. The energy, production, atmosphere and artists went to another level. There was something special about this year, like the pieces of the puzzle had clicked.” – Sarah McBriar (AVA Festival Founder)

The Garden Centre : Boiler Room Stage

This year the Boiler Room team returned to AVA Festival 2018 with a huge line up of local and international names. The weather was threatening to rain all day however it never came (apart from five minutes in which people ran outside to dance in the rain) and this meant that the vast majority of the crowd was outside. Therefore, right from the get-go, the Garden Centre was packed out, with the crowd up close and personal with the DJs. Proper Boiler Room style. And they gave it hell for leather all day.

AVA Festival 2018 - The Garden Centre - friday-lewismclay-thehypefactory6

A number of key performances ensued across the two days at this stage. Friday saw some fine performances from Jika Jika starting off, to Holly Lester smashing it with some hard tunes at five o’clock in the evening on her debut. On came Quinton Campbell, another debutante, who left the stage to a majority reception after delivering a mash-up of Moloko – Sing It Back with Donna Summer’s – I Feel Love. Adding into this set, he then went on to play a smashing end. Definitely one of the highlights of Friday.

And rounding off the brilliant Garden Centre stage was Job Jobse, followed by Mano Le Tough. Both played an absolute blinding set, and rounded off the Boiler Room stage in style.

Saturday’s antics was a little much the same as plenty of local and international names returned. Jimmy Rouge kick started the action, before followed by Aalice, who performed a blinding set. Also on the bill and who delivered brilliant sets to the crowd were Bobby Analog, the mighty Midland, Nez and Sunil Sharpe. Once again, it was a day of genre-mixing, sun shining, fist pumping action. The Garden Centre stage and Boiler Room certainly put on a show.

The Loading Bay : Red Bull Music Stage

You will begin to see a theme running through this festival review and it really takes hold of the event space which AVA Festival 2018 took over. The S13 Warehouse provided a number of unique stage locations, with The Loading Bay being one of them. Red Bull Music was tasked with hosting this stage across both days of the festival and the artists which performed here really knew what they were doing.

AVA Festival 2018 - The Loading Bay - friday_jakethompson141

It’s hard to picture lorries pulling up and unloading their stock, and then switching it to a stage with party-goers jam-packed like sardines into the ramp. Friday saw some fantastic performers, with hard hitting Techno coming from the likes of LDR, and Misfit providing the goods before this. It was the main headliner however who caught the eye of many. Helena Hauff has become one of the most sought after artists within the underground scene. And seeing part of her set showed exactly why. Her energetic style just oozed confidence and this fed directly into the Friday night crowd, made all the better by a certain Rodhad who had performed before her.

Saturday was a similar experience with the Loading Bay jam packed to the end. Key performances came from the likes of Brame & Hamo, who showed why they are hailed as some of the best up and coming stars. Hunee rounded off the stage with a show to remember.

The Warehouse : The Main Stage / Smirnoff Stage

Two stages were contained within the main warehouse venue. The main stage was an immense size with a brilliant light show keeping the party goers in awe – one at the size of the stage and two at the unique location. Also included in the main warehouse was the rather cozy chill out zone, as well as special art installations to fit with the ethos of AVA Festival. The Smirnoff Stage was a smaller, more compact area, but held its own within the daunting warehouse space.

Friday night saw the hard hitting, face-melting sounds of DSNT / Lumen on the Smirnoff Stage, with key artists like Myler, Ossian and Rackitt performing into the early hours. It was certainly one for the more harder listening fan. The Main Stage was one which contained some huge names. Hammer delivered his usual antics with some sweet vibes at the main stage, with the magnificent Larry Heard performing live directly after. You could tell this was one of the moments that festival goers had waited for, and they weren’t disappointed.

One of the more iconic moments was something which was totally unexpected. Kink was performing live and living up to the reputation he has built and nurtured, but bringing out a live samba band to perform alongside of him… well that just says it all doesn’t it? Denis Sulta followed suit with his madness before handing over to the Belfast demanded Bicep. And this has become a bit of an AVA theme. Bicep certainly pulled the crowd, and when they played their album-lead track ‘Glue’, you couldn’t have asked for a better reception.

Saturday was all the more better with a star-studded line up for the main stage and also the Smirnoff stage. It was a challenge to pick and choose where to go. All be it, you had Mella Dee, Mall Grab and OR:LA performing at the main stage, with DVS1 delivering the hard Techno tunes. Floorplan was a must and the crowd really turned out to see Robert Hood under his alias. But it was the Smirnoff stage that caught my eye, and this is where I ended up staying for the majority of the night. DJ Deece, following his AVA Boiler Room debut the year before, played what could be described as one of the best sets of the weekend.

But it was the two artists who followed on from him that really delivered the goods. It was a step down from the main stage vibes, but Jayda G rocked the stage with a mix of Disco and House beats. The funky nature of her set, the real groove and energy just seemed to bring a close knit crowd. And Moxie followed. And she delivered. Her set contained the energy to finish off a brilliant weekend. It worked, and for those that missed her, they missed a cracking set.

AVA Festival 2018 to be brutally honest, took it to a whole new level this year. The brand new location was a risk, it could have been a step too far and too soon for the festival, but that certainly was not the case. The conference continues to grow, the festival packed in close to five thousand people across both days, and the vibe surrounding it just keeps getting better and better. As platform, it has allowed many local artists to gain a foothold within the industry, and perform alongside international names. I honestly don’t know what to expect from the team for 2019 but I am sure it is going to fantastic. What a weekend.

Stay up to date with highlights from AVA Festival 2018 below and stay tuned for 2019 news:
http://avafestival.com/
 https://www.facebook.com/avafestival/
https://twitter.com/AVAFestivalNI

AVA Festival 2018 - Saturday - Photo Credit Grant Jones

AVA Festival 2018.

AVA Festival. Audio Visual Arts. The last three years has been fantastic growing from a small time festival to one which has just held it’s fourth event in it’s brand new home at S13 Warehouse. AVA Festival 2018 was a festival to remember. This year it grew, this year it had a crowd that supported every artist that attended. This year it was a festival that has catapulted AVA Festival onto the list as one to attend each year.

AVA Conference 

One of the main parts of this year’s proceedings was the AVA Conference which takes place each year. This year the conference was held at the wonderful MAC venue in the city centre. Kicking things off was an opening speech from Sarah McBriar, the festival founder, who talked about the growth of the festival over the last few years. She touched on the dedication of the team to put it together and the dedication of those supporting who attended.

Following this was the opening keynote by Bicep. The Belfast duo have had an exception few years, especially with the release of their debut self-titled album. This was the focus of the keynote, as they dropped information on the techniques of their production work, how ‘Glue’ was a project from five years before the album, amongst other interesting topics. Oh and they revealed album number two will be happening at some point next year.

AVA Festival 2018.

Amongst this, there was plenty of other conversations, tutorials and interesting debates taking place. Representatives from organisations such as the PRS For Music, Believe, Tunecore and Pioneer all descended upon The Mac. Key talks came from Kink who went into detail about his career, plus the musical pioneer Larry Heard finished off proceedings. It is certainly something which continues to help aspiring DJs and producers gain a foothold within a highly competitive industry. What was also a great factor within the AVA Conference was the closeness, and the detail which the panels went into. The attendees certainly felt included and there was plenty of time after each talk to grab a chat with those on the panel.

AVA Festival 2018

While attending the event, I overheard someone describe “B&Q was always like a Sunday Church service”. This was in reference to those pushing trolley’s around B&Q, boring, never buying anything and it always being so dull. This certainly wasn’t the case for the old B&Q site (now known as the S13 Warehouse) when AVA Festival turned up. The site was transformed to contain four major stages, each delivering some of the best local and international names, which is exactly what the festival aimed to do.  There was a number of key moments which must be highlighted.

“We are blown away by AVA this year. The energy, production, atmosphere and artists went to another level. There was something special about this year, like the pieces of the puzzle had clicked.” – Sarah McBriar (AVA Festival Founder)

The Garden Centre : Boiler Room Stage

AVA Festival 2018.

This year the Boiler Room team returned to AVA Festival 2018 with a huge line up of local and international names. The weather was threatening to rain all day however it never came (apart from five minutes in which people ran outside to dance in the rain) and this meant that the vast majority of the crowd was outside. Therefore, right from the get-go, the Garden Centre was packed out, with the crowd up close and personal with the DJs. Proper Boiler Room style. And they gave it hell for leather all day.

 

A number of key performances ensued across the two days at this stage. Friday saw some fine performances from Jika Jika starting off, to Holly Lester smashing it with some hard tunes at five o’clock in the evening on her debut. On came Quinton Campbell, another debutante, who left the stage to a majority reception after delivering a mash-up of Moloko – Sing It Back with Donna Summer’s – I Feel Love. Adding into this set, he then went on to play a smashing end. Definitely one of the highlights of Friday.

And rounding off the brilliant Garden Centre stage was Job Jobse, followed by Mano Le Tough. Both played an absolute blinding set, and rounded off the Boiler Room stage in style.

AVA Festival 2018.

Saturday’s antics was a little much the same as plenty of local and international names returned. Jimmy Rouge kick started the action, before followed by Aalice, who performed a blinding set. Also on the bill and who delivered brilliant sets to the crowd were Bobby Analog, the mighty Midland, Nez and Sunil Sharpe. Once again, it was a day of genre-mixing, sun shining, fist pumping action. The Garden Centre stage and Boiler Room certainly put on a show.

The Loading Bay : Red Bull Music Stage

You will begin to see a theme running through this festival review and it really takes hold of the event space which AVA Festival 2018 took over. The S13 Warehouse provided a number of unique stage locations, with The Loading Bay being one of them. Red Bull Music was tasked with hosting this stage across both days of the festival and the artists which performed here really knew what they were doing.

AVA Festival 2018.

It’s hard to picture lorries pulling up and unloading their stock, and then switching it to a stage with party-goers jam-packed like sardines into the ramp. Friday saw some fantastic performers, with hard hitting Techno coming from the likes of LDR, and Misfit providing the goods before this. It was the main headliner however who caught the eye of many. Helena Hauff has become one of the most sought after artists within the underground scene. And seeing part of her set showed exactly why. Her energetic style just oozed confidence and this fed directly into the Friday night crowd, made all the better by a certain Rodhad who had performed before her.

Saturday was a similar experience with the Loading Bay jam packed to the end. Key performances came from the likes of Brame & Hamo, who showed why they are hailed as some of the best up and coming stars. Hunee rounded off the stage with a show to remember.

AVA Festival 2018.

The Warehouse : The Main Stage / Smirnoff Stage

Two stages were contained within the main warehouse venue. The main stage was an immense size with a brilliant light show keeping the party goers in awe – one at the size of the stage and two at the unique location. Also included in the main warehouse was the rather cozy chill out zone, as well as special art installations to fit with the ethos of AVA Festival. The Smirnoff Stage was a smaller, more compact area, but held its own within the daunting warehouse space.

Friday night saw the hard hitting, face-melting sounds of DSNT / Lumen on the Smirnoff Stage, with key artists like Myler, Ossian and Rackitt performing into the early hours. It was certainly one for the more harder listening fan. The Main Stage was one which contained some huge names. Hammer delivered his usual antics with some sweet vibes at the main stage, with the magnificent Larry Heard performing live directly after. You could tell this was one of the moments that festival goers had waited for, and they weren’t disappointed.

One of the more iconic moments was something which was totally unexpected. Kink was performing live and living up to the reputation he has built and nurtured, but bringing out a live samba band to perform alongside of him… well that just says it all doesn’t it? Denis Sulta followed suit with his madness before handing over to the Belfast demanded Bicep. And this has become a bit of an AVA theme. Bicep certainly pulled the crowd, and when they played their album-lead track ‘Glue’, you couldn’t have asked for a better reception.

AVA Festival 2018.

Saturday was all the more better with a star-studded line up for the main stage and also the Smirnoff stage. It was a challenge to pick and choose where to go. All be it, you had Mella Dee, Mall Grab and OR:LA performing at the main stage, with DVS1 delivering the hard Techno tunes. Floorplan was a must and the crowd really turned out to see Robert Hood under his alias. But it was the Smirnoff stage that caught my eye, and this is where I ended up staying for the majority of the night. DJ Deece, following his AVA Boiler Room debut the year before, played what could be described as one of the best sets of the weekend.

But it was the two artists who followed on from him that really delivered the goods. It was a step down from the main stage vibes, but Jayda G rocked the stage with a mix of Disco and House beats. The funky nature of her set, the real groove and energy just seemed to bring a close knit crowd. And Moxie followed. And she delivered. Her set contained the energy to finish off a brilliant weekend. It worked, and for those that missed her, they missed a cracking set.

AVA Festival 2018.

AVA Festival 2018 to be brutally honest, took it to a whole new level this year. The brand new location was a risk, it could have been a step too far and too soon for the festival, but that certainly was not the case. The conference continues to grow, the festival packed in close to five thousand people across both days, and the vibe surrounding it just keeps getting better and better. As platform, it has allowed many local artists to gain a foothold within the industry, and perform alongside international names. I honestly don’t know what to expect from the team for 2019 but I am sure it is going to fantastic. What a weekend.

Stay up to date with highlights from AVA Festival 2018 below and stay tuned for 2019 news:
http://avafestival.com/
 https://www.facebook.com/avafestival/
https://twitter.com/AVAFestivalNI

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