Headliners Sven Väth and Deborah De Luca brought a slice of house and techno to paradise at Burning Beach Festival in Bali.
Burning Beach Festival, a journey that began with modest parties in Lombok, has now emerged as an awe-inspiring spectacle in the heart of Bali. The 2023 edition, held at the enchanting Mari Beach Club in Canggu, marked a significant evolution from its inception at Canna Beach Club. Featuring electronic legends like Danny Tenaglia and Richy Ahmed in previous editions, this year’s festival promised an even more mesmerizing experience with its stacked lineup.
Returning to Bali after four years, my anticipation was laced with curiosity. As I entered the festival grounds, I was immediately struck by the intricate decorations, presumably custom-made for the event. The warm welcome from both the staff and fellow attendees set the tone for what was to unfold.
The festival’s setting was nothing short of a dream. The beautiful weather and the breathtaking backdrop of Canggu’s coast blended perfectly to create a relaxed and bohemian vibe. The crowd, mainly in their late 20s to early 40s, shared a palpable excitement for the legendary dance music that awaited us. The beach-cyberpunk theme came alive with the entrancing performances of stilt walkers and dancers in luminous costumes, making me feel as if I had stepped into a bohemian paradise, far from the Bali I remembered.
The first day was a rollercoaster of emotions and sounds.
The highlight of day one for me was Matthias Tanzmann‘s set. He was someone who I had been wanting to see for a long time, and I felt particularly emotional when he played Michael Bibi’s “Different Side.” This track, Bibi’s last before his cancer treatment, resonates deeply with me, especially since now Bibi is cancer-free. Mixing both techno and house, I greatly enjoyed his set and appreciated his ability to read a crowd.
As night fell, Deborah De Luca took the stage with her techno beats electrifying the atmosphere. Her set, my second live experience, transformed the entire venue into a dynamic dance floor with people dancing on tables and raised platforms. The energy in her set was unmatched—a fantastic set to close out day one.
The festival’s second day presented an enthralling start with Stephan Bodzin’s set, a performance that took me by surprise.
Witnessing his live act for the first time, I was captivated by Stephan Bodzin’s dynamic energy and the artistry evident in his live mixing and beat creation. His performance, particularly the resonating kick drum, rekindled a sense of exhilaration within me, a feeling I hadn’t experienced at an event in quite some time. Bodzin’s set not only set the tone for the day but also served as an impeccable prelude to the next act.
Sven Väth’s ability to play to a crowd always leaves me in awe
The festival reached its zenith with Sven Väth‘s performance, my personal highlight of the entire event. Väth, a maestro with vinyl, delivered a set that was a blend of perfection and raw energy, characteristics that have always left me in awe. This was my fourth time seeing him perform this year, and each show brings a unique vigor reminiscent of an era in his extensive 40-year career. His ability to evoke such diverse energy with each set reaffirms why he is revered as a true legend in the world of music.
While I couldn’t see every artist at the festival, attendees I talked to had great things to say about Nicola Septem, Sergio Cucalon, Melaine Ribbe, Maurizio Schmitz, and Touch the Sound. Every artist brought their own personality, contributing to a wonderful event.
Reflecting on my experience at Burning Beach Festival, it was exactly what I needed.
I have nothing to complain about; everything was well done, and the organizers were so helpful. It was a great showcase of Bali beach club and world-class talent. Everything was reasonably priced, and it felt like a festival for music lovers by music lovers. The higher average age range also contributed to a more mature vibe I welcomed.
For those who find themselves in Bali or have the opportunity to visit, I wholeheartedly recommend attending the next edition of the Burning Beach Festival. It’s an event that caters to music lovers and creates a sense of community and belonging, a true testament to the unifying power of music. I look forward with great anticipation to what the next chapter will bring in this incredible journey of sound and celebration.