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Favorite ThisWhat The Festival Review / White River Canyon, OR / 7.28.12 (Day 2)

Published: August 13, 2012
Article By: Gracie Roberts ; Photos By: Mason Trinca (

Saturday morning of What The Festival was filled with sunshine, happy faces, and a palpable sense of excitement in the air. The possibilities were endless inside of the festival, as attendees had the options of lounging in a luxurious splash pool (complete with inflatable pool toys), participating in a yoga session led by Nona Fender at the LOL stage, or enjoying a wholesome meal from the many edible options provided at the event.
At 5:45 p.m., Mansions on the Moon welcomed in the evening on the WTF Stage. This three-piece chillwave band hails from Los Angeles, and by fusing their musical styles together, they have brought forth a sound that incorporates indie rock, hip-hop, and electronic sounds. Mansions’ first release, Paradise Falls, was presented by Diplo & DJ Benzi, which successfully put a spotlight on the emerging group in 2011. Now, with two albums and a slew of singles released, MOTM have an impressive musical repertoire underneath their belts. With their early evening performance time at WTF, Mansions embraced an intimate performance where they could closely connect with each member of the audience. Tracks from Lightyears EP including “Leaves Fall” and “Athens” made for a soothing atmosphere wherein fans and artists alike could float along together in musical bliss.
Dillon Francis really got the party going when he stepped up to the plate at 8:30 p.m. Over the past couple years, Francis has been becoming more and more of a household name in the EDM world with his unbeatable skills as a DJ and keen ear for moombahton sound. This 24-year-old is also based out of LA, and with his continuous growth in popularity, his tour locations have been spreading farther and wider. “A shout out to everybody who doesn’t like me,” Dillon said as he warmed up to the WTF crowd in his own quirky way. Contrary to his comical remarks, Dillon seemed to enjoy the mid-sized crowd that was present at the WTF Stage. His set packed a punch, featuring crowd favorites such as RL Grime & Salva’s remix of Kanye’s “Mercy,” Knife Party’s “Sleaze,” and Skrillex’s “Bangarang” during his 90 minutes onstage. Nearing the end of his performance, Dillon decided to change things up a bit by remixing the 70s hit “Low Rider,” making his performance equally as upbeat and energetic as Dillon himself.
Dominic Lalli and Jeremy Salken of Big Gigantic took the stage as one of the festival’s anticipated headliners. 2012 has been a big year for the duo, who released their newest album, Nocturnal, in January. Their blend of electronic and jazz genres gives their music the unique kick that is cherished and appreciated by anyone who is able to experience it. Onstage, Lalli blasted away on the sax and Salken gave it his all on the drums while they pumped up the crowd with tracks “The Uprising” and their new album’s title track, “Nocturnal”. Big Gigantic always gives their audiences the love they deserve, which continues to make them a privilege to encounter in a live setting.
What The Festival’s top headliner, Ghostland Observatory, closed out the second night on the WTF Stage. Comprised of Aaron Behrens and Thomas Turner, Ghostland is a duo that could easily be mistaken for a large band due to their enormous sound and distinguished onstage presence. This rock-funk-electro pair has been around since 2005, when they released their first full-length album, Over the years, Ghostland has revamped their sound, releasing the more electronic-centered Codename: Rondo in 2010. Ghostland hypnotized the crowd with their reverberating vocals and bone-shaking bass, laying down hit after hit for the audience to groove to. Tracks “Glitter,” “Freeze,” “Kick Clap Speaker,” and “Sad Sad City” filled the walls of White River Canyon that night, setting a funky mood that encouraged nothing but dancing. The portrait of Ghostland Observatory’s performance would not be complete without a description of their laser light show that was mystical and almost unearthly in its nature. Instead of spotlighting the artists onstage, the lasers gave the venue technicolored hues that made Ghostland’s performance equally as stimulating visually as it was aurally.

Check out reviews from the other days of the festival:

What The Festival Review - Day 1 (7.27.12)

What The Festival Review - Day 3 (7.29.12)

Tags: DubstepElectroHouseLivetronica