With an incredibly diverse lineup to choose from, here are some artists you won’t want to miss at Electric Forest 2018 including #ForestFam veterans and newcomers alike!
We are mere days away from the start of the best time of the year: eight days of Electric Forest in beautiful Rothbury, Michigan! Christmas in July has come a little early this year as Forest HQ kicks things into gear starting on Thursday, June 21, although you can pay a little extra for early arrival on Wednesday, something we highly recommend doing.
Once you arrive home in the forest, the fun literally never stops! There are curated events, interactive art installations, hammock cities, renegade sound camps, and way more to occupy your appetite for excitement. The main course is no doubt the Electric Forest lineup, which continues to grow more and more diverse each year.
With such a large lineup over the course of two weekends, it can be a little overwhelming with so many artists and genres to pick from, but fear not, as a veteran of hundreds of festivals (including Electric Forest 2011), I am prepared to offer my insights!
Bryan’s Top Picks at Electric Forest 2018
The String Cheese Incident (performing both Weekend One and Weekend Two)
I’ll be honest, I’m not as familiar with this band’s discography but what I do know is this – they may be old but they know how to jam!
I’ve had the pleasure of catching many “Cheese” sets over the years at Electric Forest and, while very different from the dance music side of the fest, they never disappoint. Not to mention that their marathon sets often include special guests, which in prior years have included Bassnectar, Skrillex, and Big Gigantic. You may get lucky and catch a super jam!
Make sure to get inside early for at least one set from them before your weekend is over; it is their festival after all!
Bassnectar (performing both Weekend One and Weekend Two)
Speaking of Bassnectar, let’s add him to the list and get that out-of-the-way right now. Simply put, you’re a fool if don’t at least consider going to Bassnectar at Electric Forest.
Yes, there are other great artists inevitably scheduled at the same time. Yes, you may very well choose to go to one of them instead, and that’s fine, but please at least consider seeing the Bass God since, again, it’s kind of his festival!
TESTPILOT (performing Weekend Two only)
You probably know him better under his other alias, but whether you see him as TESTPILOT or deadmau5, Joel Zimmerman has proudly incorporated his renewed focus on techno into all of his sets (with a middle finger in the air, I might add). That being said, TESTPILOT is no doubt his true techno alias and these shows are few and far between and not to be missed!
As part of the mau5trap curated event, the mau5 man and crew will takeover Tripolee on Saturday, June 30, all day including two-hour sets from Claptone, Lane 8, and TESTPILOT! Other mau5trap event acts include Attlas, BlackGummy, Jeremy Olander, and Chris Lake, making this showcase a must-catch during the Second Weekend!
Jauz (performing both Weekend One and Weekend Two)
As a result of the “EDM Twitter” take-down of Datsik, one of the most talked about and anticipated sets of Electric Forest 2018 has been #SharkSquad (^^^) leader, Jauz. Unless you have been living under a rock, you know that Datsik was accused by numerous women of sexual assault earlier this year. This led Forest HQ to replace him for the Bassrush curated event during Weekend One with Jauz, who was already slated to perform during Weekend Two.
Why is this so interesting? Well, quite a few people jumped the gun and voiced their displeasure with this substitution, arguing that Jauz was not the same type of heavy-hitting dubstep producer as Datsik. Jauz, in his typical composed fashion, saw these tweets and responded by alluding to a potential “throwback dubstep set” if the environment was right.
Jauz always throws down a fun bass fueled set but we will see if he decides to put the Twitter trolls to shame with a special dubstep journey. Don’t sleep on his set!
Mija (performing both Weekend One and Weekend Two)
Mija is known for her “FK A Genre” attitude and her sets showcase this mindset beautifully by touching all kinds of dance music, from bass music to tech house to hardcore. Fittingly, Forest HQ has awarded her with a whopping FOUR sets spread across the two weekends (albeit with three of them occurring during the First Weekend).
Bouncing between the Forest Stage and Tripolee, she will participate in the This Ain’t Bristol curated event on Saturday before playing two sets on Sunday to cap off Weekend One. Then, during Weekend Two, you can catch her at Tripolee on Thursday right before #ForestFam favorites Golf Clap.