Last weekend Hardstylemag visited Intents Festival 2017. Personally, this was the third year I visited the festival and it is my favorite weekend festival. The weather Gods were with us this year again. I think the grounds of Oisterwijk have a blessing for this weekend every year, maybe even too many blessings, but we’ll get back to that later. This is our in-depth review of Intents Festival 2017 including all days and camping!
Intents Festival 2017 - Endshow Saturday
So, we arrived early on Friday to get good camping spots. Some of us were staying in a Friendship camping but we still didn’t want to end up next to the portable potty that was included in the friendship camping. The queue for the parking and the festival was already, quite long at this time, but we managed to get in within 1,5h, not too bad.
They had a VIP lane for those with VIP tickets, which was nice, for them. In the Friendship camping there is one ride included for bringing all the camping gear and bags, unfortunately, our friends already took this ride before we arrived. Other than that the staff and organizers were really helpful and helped us out with our problems and questions.
The camping is growing for each year it seems. Last year they had one big station with toilets and showers, this year they extended this by having another spot at the end of the camping where they also had toilets, showers, and place for getting water. These facilities are pretty festival-standard and the showers cost 1 token to use but were free in the early morning.Since it was so warm and dry, it was not allowed to BBQ at your own camping spot, however, they had put up two areas where the BBQ was controlled, compared to the one area last year. This was very nice and a lot of people were BBQing the first day. They had also stocked up on security in form of firemen walking around the camping. Good precautions!
One of the good things about the IntentsCity camping is that it’s not too big and you can pretty easily reach the whole camping with the laid out wooden floor. Easy to reach your friends that are camping on the other side from you. The camping also has funny signs for the “streets” and if you had a Friendship camping, they even printed up a sign with the name of your groups camp.
There was also a square where they play music at the camping. You could even listen to the music at a lower volume due to the set up speakers at the camping ground. You could also find some fast-food restaurants, drinks and the IntentsCity bank for token withdrawal. The tokens could be bought in advance for a lower price of 34 € for 14 tokens instead of 40 € at the site.Connected to the square there was a place where you could play different games (like Bubble Bump football) and competitions during the festival, even a movie theater and a scene that would be used for the afterparty. They also had lockers at the festival for a very affordable price, for storing your valuables during the festival. In total IntentsCity is one of the best campsite at hard dance festivals. It offers such a great variety of facilities, services and activities!
The Pre Party
The pre-party started at 17 but most people weren’t done with their BBQ. We came in the pre-party just before 19 and headed for one of the open air stages the Circus Animals – Gearbox Digital stage. The stage was pimped out with animals, to big images of tigers, an elephant etc. really well painted, was really giving a circus animal feeling. The sound at this stage was also really good.
Sun was at a perfect height at this time, giving us some sunshine on the stage. When we arrived, the set of MickeyG vs Avi8 had been unfortunately changed to Dozer vs Avi8 due to MickeyG’s family issue but nonetheless these two legends played a great set with a lot of variation and many people had some of their favorite tracks played at one point. They really gave us a summer feeling with their set with Euphoric Hardstyle that went over in some Rawstyle at the end.After this Physika vs Bestia played and shortly after we headed to see the last of Digital Punk & Outbreak. They played at the pre-party Mainstage – Circus Freaks Unleashed where Digital Punk obviously was hosting. At Intents, they use three of the stages from the festival, so it is not a separate area that is only for the pre-party, though the pre-party is exclusively for the campers.
The last stage was the Outrageous! Vs Dynamite, they played Freestyle, Hardcore and Frenchcore. We decided to go to the Outrageous! Vs Dynamite stage since it was outdoor and we wanted some freestyle at that point.
We first saw Genius play, he played a really nice Freestyle set, a bit slow, but the party was also just starting so this was okay for now. We then saw Darkraver, he delivered a set with many Dutch songs included, so all the Dutchies could sing along. He also played a lot of Rawstyle in his set, something that I noticed more and more from the freestyle DJs.For me, being a Freestyle fan, this is not something I really like. Don’t get me wrong here, I do like Rawstyle, but not too much on my Freestyle stage! He also incorporated some Drum’n’Bass and other genres, but moderate and not over-exaggerated like with the Raw. After this Miss K8 turned up the tempo and the crowd was getting more excited, it was really a good vibe in the crowd. You could feel the energy becoming stronger. Last up was Dr Peacock, one of my favorites.
I never saw him play at an open air stage and I must say that this was amazing. The set was top quality with a lot of fun elements, and to see such a big stage closing outside in the night with Frenchcore was something I found really cool and unique. The crowd was truly going crazy at this set!
Part of the team went to see Hypnose and Sound Rush, which both played nice sets. Then they went to the The Donkey Show. They camped in front of the Cafe to actually get in and get wristbands to this special event. Nice sets by Avana & Retrospect, but shit really escalated with Zany. It was a mental set, suddenly there were Sombreros everywhere.
Entire cafe almost got torn apart when The Donkey Rollers finally arrived. Hell of a set, with an absolutely amazing atmosphere, again Sombreros everywhere and even a Circle Pit. Radical Redemption came afterward and played a good set, but he just couldn’t keep up in our opinion.
Something to point out about the pre-party was, that there was no place to refill your bottle except at the camping. But that water you couldn’t bring into the party. A bottle without a cap was 2 tokens (!) I think that was a bit pricey, especially when you don’t have another option. I can’t remember it being like this last year, and I hope this was only this year.
Intents Festival – Saturday
After a night in the warm tent, we went up and got ready for the first real day of Intents Festival 2017. Today it was hot hot hot(!!) and it was only getting warmer. The queues for the showers were not too bad and the showers had a good temperature. We first went to see Mark with a K, which is usually the opening act on Mainstage at Intents.
The people were getting in the mood by his funny style and the vibe was good. After this, we went to get some extra sunscreen at the sunscreen stand. This was a really nice idea of Intents, either you could buy a small tube with for 1 token or wait in line to use sunscreen for free. Though this was a really appreciated idea I think they should have had 2 stations for this. They had a lot of choices in restaurants and drinks. A cocktail bar, fruit bars, pizza and the prices were okay. 1,5 tokens for French fries, 2 for a smoothie or some fruit,1 for a beer.They had one stage that was the Hard Island stage, this stage was surrounded by pictures of beaches and palm trees to get people in the mood for Hard Island that is in Croatia in July. After looking around at the festival grounds and then it was time for Da Tweekaz. They played a funny set as usual, with nice summer feelings. They were also touching the hardcore again with tracks like Hero and their mix of Paul Elstak’s classic Luv U More. I think they also advertised themselves a bit for Defqon where they will play as Tweekacore (can’t wait for that one!). They finished off the set with No Ducks No Glory.
One track I haven’t heard in a party was Da Tweekaz Bootleg of Axwell & Ingrosso’s Sun is Shining, for this occasion it was suiting! The sun was shining indeed and it became harder and harder to enjoy the party in the 36 degrees we had, plus the sun. Some of us decided to go back t the camping to relax in the shade for a few hours. This was something that a lot of people did. People in the festival had to struggle though. I had friends telling me how they were just looking for some shade, a place to sit down or for water.YES, intents had made a huge miss in the water department. They had only two water stations and it could take up to 30 min to refill your bottle. And again, buying a bottle was 2 tokens! There was also a place where they sprayed out water, really popular spot, though they should’ve had this in more places at the festival. I didn’t really have a problem with the toilets at the festival though, the lines weren’t too bad.
We wanted to head back to the party but after seeing more broken and burned soldiers coming to the camping telling us about how horrible they felt we decided to wait until the sun was going down a bit more. Intents Saturday was a day full of artists, an amazing lineup, so the weather was really unfortunate, much worse than rain actually! Anyways, some of the team were more hardcore and endured the heat at the festival site.
They went to see Noiseshock & Jay Reeve at the Hard Island stage. Apparently, they played a really nice set and Noiseshock looked like the happiest guy on earth being back playing in The Netherlands, which enhance the mood for everyone listening of course. Devin Wild & JNXD played after and was equally good. Especially the new music they played and the JNXD remix of On The Go.Back at the Intentcity camping, we were ready to head to the festival and in good time to catch the anthem show that was on the Mainstage at 19. Just before we saw some of D-Block & S-Te-Fan finish their set at the main and they had a nice ending. Adaro vs Digital Punk had made an awesome anthem this year: Circus of Insanity, one of the better anthems in my opinion.
Before the show they handed out a lot of flags and during the show they had acrobats, clowns and dancers to enhance the Circus feeling. The anthem show was a bit like Power Hour at Defqon 1. Really good mood and everyone was really excited, waving their flags and jumping around. After this Adaro vs Digital Punk played a set, which felt like we already have heard many times before.
We went to the Outrageous stage to listen to Mental Theo, to our surprise they had changed the order and it was Dr Phunk that was playing instead. He played the new version Gigi D’Agostino’s L’amour Toujours by Brennan Heart & Zany. But as I mentioned before it was too much Rawstyle and it was noticed that a lot of the people in the crowd did not like this.
I think the era of Freestyle is almost over, I already noticed it at Rebirth, at least of what I consider to be Freestyle (even though freestyle can be anything, well, I hope you get the point). Radical Redemptions Brutal Nr. 6 (which is an awesome track) was played at this stage almost every time I passed.. well well, I hope this is just a phase.
The rest of the team went to Partyraiser vs Angerfist and it seems like they hit the jackpot. I quote “BITCH. MY ANUS WAS NOT READY FOR ANGERFIST AND PARTYRAISER THOUGH. WTF WAS THAT. I was in that tent for 20min and LOST MY SHIT. WTF. SO GOOD. Probably the most energetic set of all Intents. Absolutely mental!!”.Sound like it was a good set right? Then they went to the cocktail bar and had epic mojitos, something you don’t really expect at a festival like this. After that, they headed to Cyber which delivered one of the better sets this weekend as well, a lot of reverse bass, awesome. They also told me that the last 15 minutes of Crisis Era & Code Black was fucking awesome, they played Happy Hardcore, also something I’m sad I missed! The people went crazy almost losing their belongings. It was a hell of a set.
I, on the other hand, went to the main stage just in time to see the ending of Psyko Punkz, he played Fuck The Fame as we entered the stage and I instantly had a good feeling. He played some new tracks from the new album Wietse. Phuture Noise was then up and a lot of people had been looking forward to this due to the new album release Pursuit of Thunder. The show started to get better and better during this set as well, it was a live set and a really good one. After this, we decided to stay at the main stage since, after the next act (which was Brennan Heart), Gunz for Hire was going to play.
We decided to go up on the Ferris wheel during Brennan Heart, which was a really good decision. What a view! I really remember when he played Caramba – Hardcore Tequila Mix and it almost looked like we were watching an endshow. If it weren’t for going up in the wheel, I think I would have enjoyed seeing some other DJ play though. We came down from the wheel, that took us around more times than we expected. Now it was Gunz for Hire’s time to play, I wish that the area of the stage would’ve been bigger because it was really crowded for this set.The mainstage is somewhat narrow, they should expand this next time. People were standing all the way out to where the food stands were. Unfortunately, the sound wasn’t the best so far in the back but it was still a set worth to see. They had so many new tracks and it was also one of the top sets of the weekend, awesome live act. Rest of the team also saw them play and in their opinion, they are the Number 1 live act in the Hardstyle scene.
We went back to the camping to get some sleep, for some of us, this was mission impossible. Earlier years the IntentsCity camping has been a quiet one during the night. This apparently changed.. So my neighbors played Uptempo Hardcore all night, after such a day..
Intents Festival – Sunday
Getting up on Sunday was not the easiest. The heat was there this day as well, though nothing like the torture on Saturday. The showers didn’t have any warm water in the morning (would’ve been better if this happened on Saturday instead). The power outlets also stopped working for a while by the showers, but the staff quickly fixed this.
The rest of the team went to see Bass Modulators vs Audiotricz on the Mainstage, good set with summer vibes. And they loved the Coone vs Wildstylez. Apparently, people were crying when Wildstylez was playing Project One tracks. Also, I heard that the Strawberry Daiquiri was top top. Then they went to see Paul Elstak, and what I heard was the sickest Paul Elstak set they’ve seen. There was a sit-down, epic sing-a-longs, and special guest Jebroer, who contributed massively to the atmosphere.For me, Sunday was a bit different. It began with entering the festival quite early, some friends needed to buy cigarettes and withdraw more tokens but the stands were not ready for this. They only said that we should come back after 30 min and so we did, but they weren’t ready still. I don’t understand how that could be, they should be ready when the festival opens. However, they had gotten more water so that the disaster from the day before wouldn’t repeat. This was very good, but it was something they should’ve thought about before.
Anyway this day I had been looking forward to a lot. The Relive stage at Intents is something that lies close to the heart. The day was mostly spent here. We arrived when T.C.C played and shortly after Crypsis was on for an Oldschool Rawstyle set. This year they had the Rawstyle acts first and then changed to Euphoric, something that sounds weird, but it actually didn’t result in any weirdness.
It was awesome to see Crypsis play an Oldschool set again, people were already going crazy on the dancefloor and the sound was amazing. He is such a good mixer, you can really hear it when he plays. He played some favorites, like Torture, that made the crowd go a little bit harder. After this Wildstylez played and here the mood really went up. I think it might have something to do with the Project One come back at Qlimax, as my friends from the team also experienced on the Mainstage just before.We heard a lot of classics from both Wildstylez and Projet One. After this, The Z. was playing and I personally haven’t heard much about this DJ and was worried that he might not deliver as good as the others, but boy I was wrong. More and more classics came up and he mixed them well. Here the dancefloor became more and more crazy. The stage was like a Freestyle stage, or maybe even an afterparty. People were enjoying themselves to the max. I have never seen anything like it. Rowing imaginary boats on the floor, making jumping ropes out of sweaty T-shirts and playing Limbo and volleyball on each other’s shoulders. And everyone had the biggest smile on their faces.
I had friends coming from other stages, being amazed by the atmosphere here. “I just came from the Mainstage and then I came here, WOW what an atmosphere” and I couldn’t agree more. Discussing this with my friends we said this could’ve been the best atmosphere we ever experienced on a party. Just a little bit better than the fantastic Relive stage last year and it was so amazing to see. I think the crowd, in general, has become more sloppy at parties, but here it was the complete opposite.
I could have a whole festival with only this stage, I would sell my soul for being in that moment again. Truly amazing, I have tears in my eyes when I think about how good it was. Of course, the other DJs D-Block & S-te-fan and Coone were contributing to this feeling and this day. The last act on this stage was Zany & Jones. But now the musical quality lowered a bit, the atmosphere was still good but something went a little off when they entered the stage.After the Relive stage closed it was time for the last act on the mainstage. This act is something that I normally look forward to a lot. Mental Theo on mainstage playing Happy Hardcore/Freestyle. As I already had suspected this was not going to be the same since the act was Mental Theo vs Frequenzerz vs Darkraver. The set was though more like a Freestyle/Rawstyle/Hardcore set.
Going in with this feeling, they actually impressed me, and the show made it amazing. The endshow, no words, fantastic! Intents really outdid themselves this year again. This is a festival which the show only gets better and better, not like in some other events where you are playing the lottery on which year have the best stage/endshow. This day was not as crowded as the Saturday also, so we had more space during the end show.After the endshow, I went back to the camping to grab my things and go home, because some of us had to work the day after, hehe. I noticed when leaving that there was an official afterparty at the camping, something that is also new since the camping been quiet before. The rest of the team stayed until Monday morning. Going home the day after was no problems for the rest of the team.
To sum up this event. AWESOME. BEST EVENT EVER. It was a shame that it was such hot weather and that the festival wasn’t enough prepared for it. We wished some more water stations and extra colling in the tents! However, the rest of Intents Festival made up for it. Go to Intents, stay at the IntenCity camping (if you can handle the camping life), be a part of this weekend next year! It will be awesome like previous years for sure, or there will be an even better production if the organizers keep improving like this. We at Hardstyle Mag will definitely come back to Intents Festival 2018!