Belfast’s notorious AVA festival returned last weekend after a 2 year hiatus and it marked the first major festival on the isle of Ireland since the Covid 19 pandemic began.
The festival’s reappearance came with a new date in September opposed their usual June date and in a new location, Boucher Playing Fields. The whole weekend reiterated a neoteric presentiment of life in the forthcoming weeks, months and years. After a lengthy break from clubs, festivals, dancing and everything that comes with those types of events, this two day festival pronounced a new beginning for life in Ireland and the feeling of ecstasy ran through the festival grounds.
As always AVA festival returned with their infamous Boiler Room stage and with added production, it was the centre piece to the festival. A tremendous line-up of international iconic selectors, up and comers and local acts made for miscellaneous and party starting affair.
We picked our 5 favourite acts that graced the Boiler Room stage last weekend.
The Belfast native marked his homecoming with an absolute blinder of a set for his debut on Boiler Room. The rave infused set encompassed everything Kessler is about within an hour, which is no mean feat. The Rotterdam based DJ whizzed through breaks, techno, acid, dubstep, bass, drum and bass and more. The genre bending set had dancers hypes shaking right from the off and we couldn’t wait to listen back over the set once we returned from the festival.
One of Irelands most cherished selectors Cailin returned to Boiler Room for her second junket on the revered platform and it was an absolute master class from the moment the first record hit the needle. The all vinyl affair from the Waterford native comprised of deep techno grooves, Detroit rollers, hypnotic driving techno, crunchy broken slammers, Electro soaked techno numbers and more. Music came from Blawan, Shed, Lewis Fautzi, KRTM, Cailin amongst others. The set was as dark and sinister as it was blissful and jubilant. An absolute must listen for techno enthusiasts.
One of Holland’s most exciting techno prospects made her Boiler Room inception with great great flair that was matched with absolute composure. Spinning a mix of records and digital tracks, the Spielraum resident smashed out a varied selection of classic trance, hard dance and some more cutting edge techno slammers. KI/KI blurred the lines of techno and trance with great ease as she had the Belfast crowd in the palm of her hand. This one is both euphoric and slamming which is not easy task for any DJ to pull off.
Another Netherlands selector steps up for AVA’s Boiler Room but this time it’s a more seasoned Boiler Room affiliate, Carista steps up to the plate for her third Boiler Room. The eclectic selector moves through house, techno, breaks and UK Bass with great proficiency. The dynamic hour is full of straight energy right from the kick-off. I was expecting a mix of jacking house, acid and garage which is what I came to know from the Netherlands selector, but I was pleasantly surprised to find Carista playing an hour filled of mostly techno. The set was a mix bag of vintage Detroit techno to newer groove filled tracks. This is a soulful masterpiece from a modern day legendary selector.
Kink playing a live set for AVA’s sixth edition of their Boiler Room was always going to be goose bump worthy stuff. Not many artists can shake up a room with such a varied style as Kink can. Kink showcased in an hour and a half why is he is one of the best live acts on this planet. We can’t recommend this enough.