Five years of îleSoniq: a retrospective review on the festival’s growth
In honor of the fifth anniversary of Montréal’s îleSoniq Festival, Dancing Astronaut has prepared a list of highlights from the last few years. Growing from 25,000 attendees in its first year to an expected 60,000 in their upcoming edition, the past five years have brought about an abundance of memorable moments that goes down in îleSoniq history.
Debut year, 2014
As îleSoniq 2014 marked the first year of the now annual event, the lineup proved to cater towards many styles of music over the weekend. With fan-favorites like Dillon Francis, Zeds Dead and Laidback Luke scheduled and matched with festival headliner Tiësto closing out the stage, the first year went off with a boom.
Trial and error can define one’s growing success, and îleSoniq worked hard to prove that the festival was here to stay. As the weekend grew into one with cold, windy drafts in combination with pouring rain, attendees still trooped forward to finish the weekend in great spirits. The devotion to the first edition proved to be powerful, as fans had quickly adopted îleSoniq as Montréal’s newest celebration.
Laidback played an eclectic set that showed his many colors. He said later on in an interview that îleSoniq was his favorite set of that year. “With the amount of amazing shows I do, naming a show THE show of the year isn’t something I do lightly,” he said. “I was on after Zeds Dead and the rain came pouring down. Yet I picked up the energy because of the incredible crowd. Felt great in the booth. Picked the right tracks on the right time to keep the crowd energetic and even the rain added up to the incredible vibe. I still remember it vividly and I’m so excited to be back!”
Pardon My French in Montréal, 2015
Growing at a pace that shocked locals and caught the attention of interested fans across the nation, îleSoniq 2015 secured international headliners deadmau5 and Above & Beyond for their main stage, along with the skyrocketing ODESZA and Get Real’s underground royalty (Green Velvet and Claude VonStroke) closing out their NEON stage.
In addition to the array of headliners, DJ Snake’s “Pardon My French” label took over the second stage over the course of the weekend. Artists and friends like Tchami, DJ Snake, Mercer and Shiba San were joined by some of Snake’s favourites, notably Busy P of Ed Banger and DJ Pone, as well as Amine Edge & Dance.
Accompanied by bold and refined visuals that lit up the event, the 2015 edition was not one to miss. Keep an eye out as DJ Snake returns for his second time at the festival, closing out the Oasis Fido stage on Aug. 10.
îleSoniq goes metal, 2016
The craziness of îleSoniq and its success is owed to their event organizers, evenko, as the company has embarked on several verticals in addition to the dance festival. Not only the owners behind îleSoniq, but of multi-genre Osheaga Music & Arts Festival and Heavy MTL as well, evenko decided to host two of the three events within the same island on the same weekend.
The 2016 edition brought on the sights of ravers and metal fans crossing paths, as each festival was held on two distinct zones of Parc Jean Drapeau. Contrary to popular belief, both sets of fans appeared to be similar in nature; meaning that Skrillex’s black-clad, masked fans were walking among similarly dressed metal fans.
îleSoniq’s all grown up, 2017
With the festival’s growing success across the nation, it could only bring more extravagant updates. With aims in elevating the îleSoniq fan experience, the most talked-about (and daunting) was the floating dance floor.
While safe and secure, last year’s edition brought out some of the heaviest and stomp-inducing names in the business, like Spag Heddy, Malaa and Excision to close out the night. By far the most amusing addition to the festival, it’s safe to say that the ensued yet organized chaos was enough to keep everyone intrigued for this year’s event.
The stage and set-up returns this year under the “NEON” stage name, with two days full of trance and bass set for the weekend.
Learn more and get tickets to this year’s fest here.
Featured photo: 99scenes