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Shambhala 2016 review the amp


Shambhala 2016 Retrospective: The Weekend of our Lives

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The Music

The lineup at Shambhala is always something to appreciate, and 2016’s batch of acts provided something for everybody. There’s a lot to get to, so we’ll get right to it with the impressive artists we enjoyed on Thursday. A renovated Amphitheatre stage provided quality sights of one of the most stacked days of the festival, while the Living Room created the addictive atmosphere over at the Salmo River. (How great was the return of the river!?)

By the time both stages were going at full-force around noon on Thursday, we were beginning to feel those familiar emotions from Shambhala’s past come rushing back. There was little time to reflect, though, as Zeke Beats and Stylust Beats blew us away with bass, kicking-off the AMP in style throughout the afternoon. Between trips to the river, and early-tasting of the delectable food options throughout the festival grounds, we were back at the AMP, getting down far-too-hard and far-too-early at Shambhala. Right? It was Thursday, for Shambhala’s sake. There were three more days, and four more stages, to go.

But, we had no choice. Skiitour, Fort Knox Five, Tennyson, Space Jesus, El Papachango, and more were putting on incredible performances that deserved our attention, and we were happy to see that thousands of other early-arrivals at the Farm agreed.  The AMP and the Living Room were well-attended on Thursday, and satiated our appetites, giving us plenty to look forward to on Friday.

Shambhala AMP 2016

The AMPhitheatre – Photo Credit: Joffrey Middleton-Hope

Full of set-time conflicts, as any great festival with six sexy stages would be, Friday at Shambhala gave everyone a chance to indulge heavily in their genre(s) of choice. Dying for some funk in the Fractal Forest? A string of funkalicious acts featured in toon-town, with Neon Steve, OPIUOStickybudsThe Funk Hunters, and Defunk making us feel right at home on day one at the Fractal Forest. After a beautiful opening ceremony over at the Grove, Hermitude and Troyboi broke in the Funktion-One system in grand fashion with their blend of hip-hop tunes.

The Pagoda, the brilliant main stage of Shambhala, proved once again why it is just that. Headlining acts Justin MartinAlunaGeorgeGorgon City, and Boys Noize showcased house music and the diverse blend of EDM that graces the Farm each summer. As we’ve said many times, any and all stages and sets are good choices at Shambhala. It sounds lame, but it is more true at Shambhala than any other festival around. There’s a wide variety of genres and styles of music available each year at Shambhala, and finding that diversity isn’t hard to do. While this is true, the Village was the place to be at Shambhala on Friday night.

Shambhala 2016 the village

The Village – Photo Credit: Joffrey Middleton-Hope

Any stage that features the likes of legendary drummer/producer/DJ/madman KJ Sawka, Datsik side-project Ephwurd, and drum & bass royalty Roni Size & Krust deserves a festival all on it’s own. The fact that those acts were followed by dubstep’s finest in Caspa & Rusko, and Shambhala’s golden-bass-god Excision was almost too much to fathom. Yet, they delivered far beyond our expectations. All of them. Whether we were at the Pagoda, the Fractal Forest, the Village, or any of the other stages we continually bounced around on Friday night, we were able to enjoy any type of Shambhala we wanted.


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Born and raised in the Northwest, professionalized in Pullman. Enjoying the ride that dance music provides in our lovely corner of the country.

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Important things happen in Pacific Northwest nightlife, and DMNW will send you alerts!

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Important things happen in Pacific Northwest nightlife, and DMNW will send you alerts!