To follow up the 2016 North American PsyFestival Guide, in which we map out all psychedelic trance focused festivals in Canada, United States, & Central American Countries, Fractaltribe is getting in touch with many of these festivals. We are highlighting each festivals aspects which gives the readers better insight into each events' unique histories, cultures, intentions, and styles.
Welcome to the lush mountains of Appalachia in North Carolina, where Pangea Productions will hold it's 9th edition of "Welcome to Pangea" from May 13-15. Pangea is one of three psy festivals happening in North Carolina this summer and has a dedicated and awesome family vibe. We had the chance to attend in 2014 and can verify the beautiful nature this festival is set in, deep in the mountains surrounded by green trees and with the crisp flowing French Broad River running along the camping area. Featuring a solid lineup with Drumatik of Sangoma Recs, Zentrix & Labyr1nth, along with solid regional and local talent, diversity and quality meet in an intimate setting. We got in touch with the organizers, Kameleon & Klaws, and got to pick their minds about Pangea's history and some of the finer aspects that aren't typically asked! Read below to see what they have to say!
FT: How did your festival come about, where did the idea come from?
Pangea: 300 million years ago, there was only one continent, called Pangea, before the earth started splitting into the continents we know today. With our festival, we try to represent exactly that: people from all backgrounds, nationalities, cultures coming back together to hear music, share experiences in front of One stage, unified by One sound, which is a journey through different styles of psychedelic electronic music.
FT: How many editions have there been and when did it start?
Pangea: We are in our 9th year which means our initial party was in 2007; It started as a big 1 night and 1 day house party, with artists/attendees from many different cultural backgrounds. We then moved it outdoors in a pristine location on top of Paris Mountain, and from there it evolved to a new location in the Pisgah Forest in the Appalachian Mountains, where it is currently.
FT: Where did the name come from?
Pangea: Pangea Productions is what we’ve always called ourselves, and so Welcome to Pangea seemed natural as we wanted to invite everyone to join us in our lands and our philosophy, which is One people One sound. That’s why we only use One stage, because we want everyone to be on a similar wavelength, sonically, visually, spiritually, mentally, and physically.
FT: What values are you trying to promote as a festival?
Pangea: That we are all together and our differences are what is needed to keep a balance. We also tell a story and create a journey for all attendees through many genres of top notch electronic music: from dub to drum and bass to house, techno to progressive and psy. The sequence is carefully selected so to create a journey through sound and be in harmony with the elements.
FT: What’s your biggest challenge within the organizational process for this festival?
Pangea: Growing the festival while still keeping it known only to those who are going to bring the right energy.
FT: Tell us a defining moment in your festivals history.
Pangea: This year could maybe be considered that as it’s the first time we’ve brought over an artist from Europe; Were very happy to host Drumatik of Switzerland / Sangoma Records, his sound has certainly been a big influence on us down here. This will be his first performance in the South East.
Set the Scene
FT: What is this year’s festival all about? Set the scene:
Pangea: A Crystal Cave that is your Mind. This year we’ve focused the music more towards a mysterious sound, utilizing psy trance, progressive, techno, house, and minimal.
FT: What kind of music do you feature and why? What is the idea behind the way you schedule and your lineup?
Pangea: We’ve always had a wide variety of underground sounds. Everything from Psy Trance, Progressive Psy, Neo Goa, Techno, Tech House, to Chill Out, Downtempo, Dnb. This year there’s definitely a focus on more mysterious psychedelic sounds combined with lots of beautiful techno, house, and minimal. The sequence is carefully selected as to create a journey through sound, unite everyone and open up their inner ear to sounds they might not have heard before, while being in harmony with the elements.
FT: What are you doing this year to improve your festival atmosphere?
Pangea: Several additions this year- Quintessence Kava Bar will be joining us this year; sharing lots of exotic beverages from many regions of the world. We are also bringing artists and friends from The Secret Cirkus, a circus troupe like no other, who will engage and playfully entertain attendees with fire spinning, juggling, stilt-walking, giant bubbles, hooping and many more amazing feats.
There will also be 2 VJs, each painting a unique view of the world & space casting mesmerizing projections on screens and the music tent, which covers our dancefloor, itself.
FT: 3 things to tell the attendees about the event that they otherwise wouldn’t know:
Pangea: There is a pristine river for swimming and tubing. Attendees will have access to showers with hot water. There is free wifi near the entrance and check- in station.
FT: What are you doing to make your festival different / What is your identifying feature of your festival?
Pangea: Its hard to narrow this answer down to just one thing- Pangea itself is the collective- The combination of music we bring together on one stage is unlike any other festival in this area. Attendees also really love the land itself, the combinations of private camping spots, fire pits, trails, river access, hot-showers, wifi, and the beautiful meadow where a covered tent keeps the dancefloor moving no matter the weather really sets the stage for an amazing experience.
FT: What are a few of the defining characteristics of your festival?
Pangea: High quality of music, a beautiful location, and wonderfully welcoming people; there is undoubtedly a sense of family, connection and inclusion for everyone attending.
FT: How do you continually keep your festival fresh and relevant?
Pangea: We like to keep a consistency with the sound but still keep it fresh by bringing in new artists each year as well as many of the same ‘Pangea Family’ DJs. We also change the themes and colors of the decoration, each year having a different yet familiar vibe, all tied with the general theme of the year.
This year, the theme is Crystals; imagine an underground cave with crystals and gems of all colors. There will also be 2 VJs painting the interior of the dance space with warping, shifting, mesmerizing visualscapes.
FT: Tell us about a person behind-the-scenes on your team that doesn’t get much recognition.
Pangea: Caitlin Vance, Jesse Spainhour, and Mark Dill for sure. Those 3 do SOO incredibly much to help us. Without them we couldn’t get this done. If I listed everything they do to help it would go on forever.
FT: Genre specific or multiple styles
Pangea: Multiple Styles all in the Underground Psychedelic range.
FT: What are the most important elements of a psytrance festival?
Pangea: Everyone feeling safe, welcome, and secure and away from society. And also everyone feeling on a similar wave-length sonically, mentally, and spiritually.
FT: What values are you trying to promote as a festival?
Pangea: Diversity, Unity, Inclusion, Opened-mindedness.
FT: How has the psytrance culture affected you?
Pangea: After experiencing psy culture for the first time in 2000 it helped my perception and helped me see there was more to existence than just what we experience in this realm.
FT: What do you hope your attendee’s get from the festival?
Pangea: We hope that people will open their minds to new sounds & new people and enjoy being in one of the Ultimate Creators most beautiful landscapes.
FT: Where do you see the festival going in 1 year, 5 years, 10 years?
Pangea: We look forward to having our 10th year anniversary next year and growing the festival year over year while keeping it fresh and consistent.
1. Your first Psy festival: Utta Chaos - Spiritual Awakening around Asheville NC in 99’ or 2000 I forget, it was awhile ago- but life changing.
2. A Festival you would pay to go to: Modem Festival for sure.
3. Your favorite music album of all time: Psytrance: anything by Glowing Flame Records
Progressive: Early Iboga Recs. / Digital Structures
General: Radiohead - Ok Computer
4. Your current favorite: Night Tempo - Baby Maker
About Kyle Fractaltribe
Kyle co-produces indoor Fractaltribe events and it's annual festival - Fractalfest. He operates fractaltribe.org and is the creator of the North American Psytrance Festival Guide. An avid traveller, he travels regionally and internationally to psytrance events and publishes media to promote the music and culture.