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HARD Summer 2019 brought serious heat to SoCal [DMNW Review]

Hard Summer 2019
Ivan Meneses for Insomniac Events

This year, HARD Summer Music Festival made its return to the Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California for its 12th iteration. Music fans from all over the country travelled far and wide to gather at this highly anticipated summer event over the past weekend. The iconic event set a new record by drawing in over 170,000 attendees across both days. For comparison, last year’s HARD Summer saw an estimated crowd of 155,500 attendees.

With daytime temperatures hitting over 100 degrees all weekend long, fans were treated to a weekend full of the very best in electronic dance music and hip-hop, hosting artists like Dillon Francis, Kid Cudi, Alison Wonderland, RL Grime, Anti Up, Kayzo, and more. This year’s lineup captures the range that electronic dance music has to offer with various rare back-to-back sets that were nothing short of iconic, such as Excision B2B NGHTMRE, ZHU B2B Tchami, and more.

It’s safe to say that HARD Summer 2019 seriously brought the heat to So Cal, and we were there to witness it all.

Let’s Talk:

Venue, Stages, and Amenities:

This past weekend was…HOT. HARD took place at the Speedway in Fontana, and the venue layout reminded us of EDC Las Vegas. We were immensely impressed with the efforts Insomniac made to ensure the safety and well-being of festival attendees under such heat. The event was equipped with 102 misting fans, 2 water cannons, and numerous free water refill stations that were easily accessible. There were also misting teams roaming the venue at all times to keep attendees cool and happy.

Doug Van Sant (Alive Coverage) for Insomniac Events

The two main stages “HARD” and “HARDER” were on opposite ends of the speedway, and what really wowed us was the over 2,500 feet of misting line running through “Shady Lane” connecting the two stages. Moreover, there was over 168,000 square feet of shade structures providing protection from above. HARD also blanketed the Speedway with 1.2MM square feet of ground cover, not only did that help address the dust issue but also helped combat the glare and heat reflecting off the black pavement.

Music and Highlights:

The rare back-to-back billings were the most anticipated and talked about leading up to, during, and after the festival. Respectable monsters in the bass music scene, Excision and NGHTMRE came together to bring major headbanger energy to HARD. They also brought out Los-Angeles based duo Slander to kick things up a notch, sending the crowd into a frenzy.

The special surprise set was revealed to be a back to back set by DJ Snake and Malaa. Another one of our favorite sets was the rare ZHU b2b Tchami set as the sun set over the stage.

Drew Ressler-Rukes for Insomniac Events

Kayzo reunited The Binches by bringing out Yltron, Ookay, and Dotcom for his epic hardstyle set. LA icon Shaquille O’Neal also destroyed the stage as Diesel. Other noteworthy performances of the weekend include Dillon Francis, Alison Wonderland, Ghastly, 12th Planet, and more.

Kid Cudi took the stage and opportunity to premiere a special remix of one of his best tracks, Erase Me. He started off by playing the original song before revealing mid-song the Steve Aoki remix, then moving to debut the remix afterward.


After a full weekend of impressive production, epic musical performances, and great vibes, HARD Summer 2019 came to a spectacular and successful end. It definitely proved once again that it is a festival that successfully blends electronic dance music and hip-hop in a way that is nothing short of epic.

Big hats off to Incomniac for organizing such a successful event and we definitely appreciate all the efforts made to ensure that this year’s HARD Summer was one for the books!

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