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May 10, 2021

Interview with Paul Abad from Earth Frequency Festival

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Earth Frequency Festival is at Ivory Rock, South East Queensland

Finding your Frequency

One of the most immersive festivals of the year is Earth Frequency Festival. Happening 15–18 February at Ivory Rock in SE QLD, this is a weekend of wild DJ sets, primal dancing, art installations, mind-bending light shows with strong messages about sustainability and travelling lightly on the planet. Festival director Paul Abad spoke with The Echo about what’s in store for 2019.

Who is Android Jones – how do you include a ‘visionary artist’ in the lineup? What is he planning for EF?

Android Jones is one of the highest regarded visionary artists, but he’s one of the few of this calibre who works entirely digitally. His art is totally next level, and now he’s exploring immersive 360-degree projections and virtual reality. He’ll be showing art and VJing and speaking at our festival, and also presenting his 25-minute film Samskara in full 360 mode at the Brisbane planetarium just before and after Earth Frequency. 

So what is planned for the lineup?

This year we’re extremely happy to have Clozee as our festival headliner. She’s a French electronic producer who has blown up massively. Her final set of the tour will be on Sunday night on the main stage. Her music bridges between world / tribal music and modern bass music styles such as dubstep and trap but it’s hard to categorise. She’ll have Android Jones VJing for her set. I think other unmissable sets are Dub FX in live band mode, the Grouch in Dub band, and for the techno and trance lovers… Electrypnose and Luigi Madonna.

What makes Earth Frequency unique? Is it becoming our Australian version of Burning Man?

I think Earth Frequency is unique mainly because of its iconic venue, super-chilled vibe, and the fact we pull together an epic international lineup while keeping the size of the festival under 5,000 people. Burning Man is a totally decentralised festival of about 70,000 people in the middle of the desert, while we have 5,000 people in the lush SE QLD nature, so there’s a very different experience to be had at the two festivals.

I see you have introduced Bunkhouse Cabins. Tell me a bit about the camping and accommodations on offer; it seems festivals have really taken on the idea that festival-goers really like a bit of comfort!

Our 4-day passes include general camping, but we have a range of upgrades on offer. For people with all the right setup but who want electricity, close camping, and one day early access, we have deluxe camping. We also offer 4m and 5m bell tents. And this year our venue has installed close to 100 bunkhouse cabins, which offer complete festival luxury – double bed, power, fridge, private toilet and shower, power and even a desk! For anyone wanting to pimp their festival experience, but also for young families and anyone with disabilities or heat sensitivities, this is a great option to make a super comfy festival experience. 

What are the core values for Earth Frequency Festival? How does permaculture play a role?

Earth Frequency started as a 300-person tree-planting doof and it’s developed over 14 years to what it is now. We try to balance the party vibe with an element of education, positive social impact, environmental awareness and personal transformation. We’re now doing tree plants in the local area, donating to local environmental causes, and we have a week-long permaculture retreat in the organic farm on the venue run by Grounded Permaculture.

What are the other local events that we have happening in our local area leading up to EFF?

This year we have a show with Thankyou City, co-presented by Electric Forest on 12 January, and also Harmonic Spaces, which is our annual visionary art exhibition and sacred sound event, will be happening on 2 February –- both events at the Byron Theatre on Jonson Street.

What should we be expecting from EFF for 2019?

We’ve worked hard on making a really standout lineup this year, across all the creative art forms. We also have two weddings happening at the festival so there is going to be lots of LOVE and we’re trending towards our biggest turnout yet. So for anyone who’s curious about our festival, it’s a great year to jump in.

Earth Frequency Festival is happening at Ivory Rock in SE QLD, 15–18 Feb. For tickets and program info go to earthfrequency.com.au.

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