It's about time we had a closer look at CRSSD festival beyond what you will see in most reviews that revolve around the great line up, beautiful venue and sunset. So now that it has completed its 5th edition this month (this time with rain instead of the ocean side sunset) it's time we examine what CRSSD is about and how it's having an impact on our scene. One writer previously stated that the festival is a sign of a dark outlook for House and Techno, let's see if this year tells any different tales.
I read the article that was previously written about CRSSD signifying doom and gloom after having attended the same festival it was written about. I didn't agree, but was it because of a different perspective? I prefer to be in the crowd and enjoying the experience instead of being a backstage critic concerned about networking and being seen. I try to write from the crowds perspective, as I believe writing from a similar experience is the best way to earn trust with the reader. So I went into the spring 2017 CRSSD looking for signs of the doom and gloom theory. Even with gloomy weather throughout the weekend and the absence of the usual beautiful sunset.
This year the festival is really starting to come into its own and showed it's going to continue to play a role in the direction of the scene. The people that flock to Waterfront park are cooler and more influential, part Detroit Techno snob and part Coachella cool, musically knowledgeable with an understanding of the roots of the scene. Other “cool” crowds at comparative festivals run to the main stage for the Rock band teaming up with a rapper who surprisingly brings out a k-pop sensation for a pop culture frenzy. At CRSSD, one of the largest crowds all weekend was for the Seth Troxler b2b with Eats Everything set. Why? Because usually, you would have to travel half-way around the world to see that. Everyone seemed to know the back 2 back was something not to be missed and the DJs delivered with a 2-hour set that Ibiza regulars would appreciate, instead of a "dumbed-down Americanized" performance. DJs at CRSSD are starting to become aware that they can dig deeper in their arsenal and play tracks they usually save for the seasoned European audience.
The festival is also starting to understand its FOMO factor and they took full advantage with one small and seemingly insignificant move. The “Wish you were here” neon sign that was perfectly placed. If you weren’t at the festival you have probably seen a picture on Instagram showing this sign. These pictures tend to show a group of generally good looking people with the stage and the city skyline as the backdrop. The tone of the sign comes across as if Nelson from the Simpsons is voicing it. “Ah-hah, wish you were here”. FOMO overload, especially as Claude VonStroke closed out the Birdhouse take over of the Palms stage Sunday night. The Palms is the smaller of the three stages where many CRSSD veterans end up spending a good deal of time, creating a great vibe. This all ensures more people wanting to head out to San Diego this fall when the festival returns.
CRSSD is full of influential, good looking people that have great taste in music and appreciate the value of an experience leading me to believe that some of the future leaders of the scene are in the crowds. I see this as a good sign, a sign that the future of American House and Techno music is in good hands and headed in the right direction. So, I for one am looking forward to the Fall edition to once again reunite with one of the most unique crowds in our scene.
More info on CRSSD: http://www.crssdfest.com