Last weekend Puyenbroeck park near Wachtebeke turned into a massive festival area with camping for the extra dedicated lovers of the harder styles. This year was unlike all the previous editions: we celebrated a decade of dedication! Hardstyle Mag was present the entire weekend to share the experience with you.
Everyone who has been camping at a weekend festival before knows that it is always a competition to get the best spot at the festival camp site. First come, first served. At The Qontinent they span a ribbon which is moved further onto the campsite every few minutes.
Therefore, the campsite becomes rather organized and less chaotic than what we have seen before. It might come across as a childish arrangement but it is worth it! Furthermore, the campsite is next to a lake and in the middle of nature, giving the campsite a pleasant atmosphere. Enough about the campsite, let’s move on to the party and music!
What better way to start your weekend than with an ass-kicking pre-party? Audiofreq unleashed his “Aussie-madness” onto the Belgian grounds. After that it was time for a true legend to enter the stage: Brennan Heart! The crowd got hyped up by his most amazing sing-along classic ‘Imaginary’ and the humorous and hard collab with Sub Sonik ‘Standje Maximaal’.
This set was followed by another set of legends: D-Block & S-Te-Fan vs Isaac. And daaaamn, that was insane! Both acts are – well-known for their classic tracks but aren’t holding back on dropping new shit such as DBSTF’s ‘Angels and Demons’ or Isaac’s ‘Burn’ in the Sub Zero Project remix.
Time to kick it up a notch! Hard Driver dropped a sick set including some great tracks of his recent album #NOSLEEP. By fans he is praised for his ability to produce great anthems and he proved it by dropping ‘It’s All In The Game’ (with Coone, Intents Festival 2016), ‘Interconnected’ (Reverze 2017) and ‘Start the Rage’ (as Public Enemies, Qapital 2017).
After deciding to sleep when we’re dead, we were engaged into the mysterious sounds of another great producer in our scene: B-Front. His melodic and rawphoric mystery sound and his master moves behind the decks are always enjoyable! After B-Front we decided to call it a day, but there was no way we could sleep with Paul Elstak and Panic still playing. The campsite of the Qontinent is very close to the stage where the pre-party took place. Even though we were not there, we can assure you that it was a great set.
Saturday (festival day 1)
After a rainy morning and a cold shower, we started our day where last night’s pre-party mainstage turned into the festival’s Rawstyle stage. Minus is More youngster Act of Rage played some of his well-known tracks (‘Gangster for Life’ and ‘Brain Confusion’) but he also played some of his newest productions which will be featured on his upcoming album. This album is definitely something to look forward to!
We moved to the mainstage, where we stumbled upon some Hardstyle lovers playing tennis with blow-up rackets during Sephyx’ set. Check our Facebook page for the video! A big plus at The Qontinent is the walking distance and space at the various stages. Switching between stages can be done in a matter of minutes. It is also very easy to find back your friends because the areas are not too crowded.
After Sephyx it was time for some Scandinavian madness at the Decade of Dedication Arena: Da Tweekaz! Their set immediately caused a great vibe in the crowd as they opened with Eiffel 65 – Blue (Team Blue Mix) that they created with Adrenalize and Code Black for Hard Bass 2017. Too much madness to handle! Happiness and karaoke overload, time for something different.
From happiness to a portion of harsh hardcore. Angerfist live was about to destroy the Medals of Honour area. The Medals of Honour area was in a tent, but there was enough space for visitors to dance outside of the tent. We all know that Angerfist has a massive following and we sure noticed this. Within the tent there was barely any space to bust some great moves, but this did not take away any of the fun of his set.
As the tent was packed there were also many people outside of the tent who showed some real dedication because it – unfortunately – started drizzling. For visitors the lack of dancing space might have been annoying but for the MC this only meant one thing: STAGE DIVING!
We quickly moved to the Declaration of Dedication area where Phuture Noize was blasting his sound over the crowd. Known for his unique melodies and productions, he played a magnificent set with tracks such as ‘The Aftershock’, ‘Fire’ and ‘The Paradox’. The last track was almost run completely on the crowd’s voices which clearly satisfied Phuture Noize.
The transition between Phuture Noize and Ran-D was very satisfying. What better way to close Phuture Noize’s set and opening Ran-D’s set than by playing their collab ‘Suicidal Superstar’ on stage. Note from your fans: please release this banger asap! Fantastic combination of a true legend and a young talent resulting in a track which is unique in its kind.
The one and only Firestarter blasted sing-along ‘Zombies’ which was shouted out by everyone there. Also, ‘DRUGS’ (with Act of Rage) was a true party starter. Overall, Ran-D can be considered one of the greatest producers in hardstyle who is not only a major melody creator but is also gifted with the ability of doing vocals.
According to initial planning, Deetox was supposed to be playing. Unfortunately, after her thunder accident she was still recovering. The gap in the time table was filled by her colleagues E-Force and Delete who both played a one-hour set instead of a thirty minute set. A few days later Deetox announced on her Facebook page that she will be returning at the Extreme Loudness at Decibel Outdoor.
Crypsis continued the raw rage by dropping tracks like ‘Program Hostile’, ‘King Kong’ (with Sub Sonik) and also some Minus Militia ‘Overdose’ and ‘Reign Supreme’. Next up: Adaro! Another legend who would be joining Ran-D later that night on the mainstage for a Gunz for Hire attack. We watched the crowd enjoying Adaro’s set while we saved up some energy and had some dinner at the food court next to the Declaration of Dedication area.
Another big plus at The Qontinent were the number of bars and food options. There was plenty of choice and no queue at the bars. So no pushing and irritation when you were getting something to eat or drink. The personnel was friendly and fast! Meanwhile E-Force started to enlighten the crowd with his ‘Seven’ edit and many other tracks from his recent album ‘Edge of Insanity’.
Time for a change in surroundings. We proceeded to The Arena where the DWX boys from Sub Zero Project entered the stage. Total insanity while they dropped ‘The Project’ and some random choo-choo trains appearing during ‘Bass Train’. They also dropped ‘Ready For This’ (with Sub Sonik) and we all know the combination of the two subs means madness. This set was overloaded with energy that was spread onto the Belgian grounds. Great vibe!
All criminals beware! Gunz For Hire is coming for ya! Not a thirty minute set like we are used to from live acts but a full forty-five minute set. This means that there was not only time for recent tracks such as ‘Military’, ‘No Mercy’ and ‘Plata o Plomo’ but also G4H classics such as ‘Kings of the Underground’ and ‘Sorrow’. G4H has an act that still remains unique within the scene. Two Rawstyle legends together worked out the concept into perfection with tracks telling a story which makes the act easy to understand.
Closing a mainstage of a big festival on a Saturday is a special honour. Radical Redemption does not back down for this. Tracks from his Brutal saga flying left and right and his awesome mash-up from Hard Bass 2016 (including ‘Don’t Fuck With The Radical, ‘Spell of Sin’ and ‘Mad Man (ft. MC Nolz)’.
He has been in his studio working very hard on new tracks (‘Until I Win’, ‘Bounce, Face First’ and ‘America’. Rumor has it that he will be releasing another album on the 4th of November during his third solo event The Road to Redemption. A few days later the man himself confirmed that he indeed will be releasing an album, YES!
What an absolute insane closing set! But a festival is not over until we have seen some fireworks. Endshow time!!! Besides throwing awesome parties. the Belgians have another talent. We have seen many endshows with fireworks before, but nothing is as good as Belgian fireworks. Blinded by enormous bangs and light flashes we went out with a bang on the anthem ‘Young, Gifted and Proud’ by Coone. Wow, amazing endshow!
The Qontinent does not have an official after party for the die-hards who stay at the campsite but that is okay. We knew there was still another massive day ahead of us so we decided to go to bed. It was a rougher night than the night before but the guards who watched over the campsite 24/7 had everything under control. We have been to numerous weekend festivals but this campsite was definitely the most quiet we have ever experienced.