This is in no way, shape, or form an attack on you or on Ultra, which is a fantastic production. It’s simply a declaration of love for TomorrowWorld and the folks over at ID&T, who sure as hell know how to throw one incredible music festival. The inaugural festival, which took place last weekend in the “mythical” land of Chattahoochee Hills, is an incarnation of its Belgian counterpart, Tomorrowland. Tomorrowland was born in 2005. Its last occurrence just two months ago at the end of July sold out in one second. Now that’s impressive. So TomorrowWorld, whose location was announced March 21 at the Mondrian in the middle of WMC, made its way overseas and set up camp on the outskirts of Atlanta, Georgia. Why there and not a big, obvious city – like Vegas or L.A – was the question on everyone’s mind. We have 10 answers for you, which are the same reasons of why TomorrowWorld is better than our hometown EDM fest, Ultra.
Who doesn’t wish they could dream all day long? Here you can. TomorrowWorld had its own camping site dubbed Dreamville. An estimated 30,000 music lovers camped out from Thursday through Monday in order to immerse themselves entirely in the spirit of the festival. The festival experience alone was dreamlike. Now add camping for five days to the equation, along with a special performance Thursday night – “The Gathering” – which featured kings of TomorrowWorld Dimitri Vegas & Like Mike, and you’ve got yourself one amazing dream.
9. Sound, Sound, Sound
We’ll give it to Ultra that they have their shit together as far as festivals go and sound is concerned. In comparison to EDC Las Vegas, where if you weren’t standing directly in front of the stage you couldn’t hear jack, Ultra is a goldmine. TomorrowWorld, however, is on a whole other playing field. The main stage could be heard all the way atop the comfort zone, on the hilltop, which was a good five minute walk. And not just that, but it was better than if you were directly in front of it without being five rows away from the DJ. No sound from any stage, no matter the closeness, interfered with each other, which is another thing that kind of sucked at Ultra if you were in the Klipsch stage.
8. Just getting around the festival is an exercise and adventure, in a good way
Space is a big deal, and so naturally it would make sense that the organizers of the fairytale festival would decide on a 500 acre horse ranch to throw this little shindig. One even forgot the fact that it smelled, was kicking, and sitting on horse manure all weekend long. Cyonara water (a bacteria found in the lake) also didn’t matter to those walking on a bridge just inches above water with thousands of other people. It added charm to the whole thing. As did the snakes – giant snakes – rattling around. Still, people didn’t seem to mind walking through the forest or weird noises coming from nothing but a bush. Congestion was nonexistent, even when you looked down upon the main stage into the masses of people, it was easy to make your way around. At Ultra, one easily feels like going into a panic attack by simply going to the bathroom. Good luck at finding your friends if you get lost as service is at zero bars. Not here, service is better than anywhere else. You’re in the middle of nowhere, so you’ve got as much bars as there are trees.
7. No traffic, lines, or hassles getting in and out of the festival
South of Atlanta, Chattahoochee Hills is quite the drive. It’s a beautiful drive though, and because it’s 30-45 minutes from Downtown Atlanta, the city isn’t filled with ravers in fur and kanji (although you can find them in the hotels where the shuttles are leaving from). Shuttles take you to and from festival, and various parking grounds allow easy access to the festival from multiple entrances. No lines, no waiting, no traffic. Not to mention the ride back is gorgeous at night with all the stars shining just for you. Makes you wonder – are we all just a bunch of stars?
6. LIV ocean club, pool, and mushroom land
Oh yeah. LIV was at TomorrowWorld. The club hosted their own stage where Super You & Me, Laidback Luke & Friends took over along with lots of other big names like Benny Bennassi and Pete Tong. Mushrooms were the theme here, and who doesn’t love those? 3000 people were invited to the tent, as that was the maximum capacity. If you felt cramped or hot you could take a dip in the pool, just feet away from the mushroom infected dance floor. That’s one up from the LIV here where to get refreshed someone has to spill their drink on you.
5. Artist mansion
We’ll give it to Ultra. Artists transportation to and from Bayfront Park consisted of boats, and the artists area was a giant Yatch. You think Afrojack takes a cab or waits in traffic? No no no. What about TomorrowWorld, which was smack in the middle of nowhere? Oh jut build a mansion for the artists just for the event, duh! Life size lollipops (inedible), lobster, steak, and personal massages are all the perks available to those talented enough to play at this festival.
4. You want to party with adults and not kids who can’t hang
21+ changes a festival in ways you can’t possibly imagine. Girls aren’t twerking all over the place, dying for attention that can only be attained by taking their clothes off and “expressing themselves” in the most inappropriate of ways. No youngsters definitely changes the vibe and creates an overall better atmosphere. People know how to party responsibly and everyone is really here for the music and experience, not to just get effed up. There’s less bro’s and hoe’s, ya’ know?
3. Book of wisdom
The first chapter in the Book of Wisdom was written at Tomorrowland. TomorrowWorld was the second chapter, where readers got to step into their dreams and write their own history. Whatever you want it to be, it can be., and it was. At least for three days, where the energy from people who have gathered here from 75 countries and with more flags waving in the air than I’ve ever seen have nothing but love and insight to share with one another. PLUR has been taken to a whole other level, and we’re not just talking Lady Casa, although she was there sharing her higher consciousness and swapping kandi with fellow PLUR warriors.
Details are everything and everything is in the details. From trees in the forest dressed in fabrics with hidden messages inside to blowfish that breathe fire out of them. There’s giant buddhas in the middle of the forest. Although they are there for a reason – to give you insight. Even money doesn’t exist here Want to buy something? You need TomorrowWorld currency, or tokens. Money doesn’t buy happiness, after all.
1. Discover new music
TomorrowWorld had some of the worlds best DJs grace their stages. Calvin Harris, Nicky Romero, Afrojack, Steve Aioki, Afroki (a combo), and more hosted the main stage. Superstars moved the masses, but personally, I didn’t enjoy any of them, except Hardwell. The rest (that I got to see, at least) all fell flat. I did miss Porter Robinson and Tiesto though.
I didn’t, however, miss any of the hidden talent that arose in this occasion. By hidden we simply mean the opposite of mainstream. I think every artist but a handful I saw played Icona Pop’s “I Don’t Care,” and while it’s a good and catchy song, I too don’t care much for it after the 10th time. Diplo hosted his own stage on Sunday – The Mad Decent stage. Lilipads, water fountains and fireworks all encouraged ravers to release their inner freak, as did DJ Snake, a surprising performance I’ll never forget. The M Machine , Gramatik, and local acts Henrix and Digital Lab were all examples that EDM – whatever that even means – is ever-changing and constantly evolving. Its the sound of the past, present, and future.
Yesterday is history, today is a gift, tomorrow is a mystery.