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Night Vision's Top 15 Must-See Acts of Shambhala 2015!

Has it been a year already? With just over a week before our pilgrimage to Western Canada’s most illustrious electronic music festival begins, the hype is getting way, way too real. The excitement truly began to take hold back in March, with the announcement of what is—and we say this without a drop of hyperbole—the best lineup that Shambhala has ever produced. With acts ranging from mainstream, to underground, to straight up curveballs (DJ Jazzy Jeff anyone?), there’s enough depth and variety to satisfy even the snootiest of tastes. Those familiar with the farm know that even the best laid plans canand willbe thrown to the wind once the night takes hold and our ears become our only guides; nevertheless, indulge us for a moment if you will as we present our top 15 must-see acts at Shambhala 2015.

(In order of appearance)


Ardalan

When: Friday, 5:00pm – 6:00pm

Where: The Pagoda

With each passing year, San Francisco’s dirtybird records’ presence at Shambhala grows bigger and bigger. At long last, that presence has culminated in a full-on Friday night takeover at the Pagoda—a takeover fans have been begging for, but never quite convinced would become reality. With each act bringing their own style, occupying their own niche within the showcase itself, the music is sure to stay fresh all day & night.

Kicking things off is rising star and Night Vision’s biggest crush: Ardalan. Having already released one of the songs of the summer with his remix of Billy Kenny’s “I Eat Beats”, the future looks brighter and brighter every day for this gem. Pack a lunch and join the Night Vision crew in busting first moves of the dirtybird takeover. Meet you in front of the subs.


Cause & Affect

When: Friday, 7:20pm – 8:40pm

Where: The Pagoda

If you find yourself longing for some big, invigorating UK Garage basslines, look no further than Cause & Affect. Consisting of 2014 headliner Chris Lorenzo and Birmingham’s Kane, the duo have found themselves at the forefront of the (dubiously named) “Jackin House” movement. No matter what you call it, after witnessing Lorenzo and his co-conspirator Hannah Wants ignite the Pagoda just one year ago, we strongly urge all of our readers to check these boys out!


DJ Harvey

When: Friday Night, 8:00pm – 12:00am

Where: The Living room

Although he was once dubbed the Keith Richards of DJs by Rolling Stone, DJ Harvey fancies himself more of a Frank Zappa character: “He’s naughty, intellectual, and dangerous.” Whatever you want to call him, there’s no denying Harvey exudes a rock star aura that has followed him over a career spanning nearly 3 decades. With an ocean-deep record collection full of retro house, techno, disco, and funk gems that could only be accumulated through 25+ years of digging, you’d be mad not to catch a piece of this gargantuan, 4-hour Friday night slot at the beach.


Shiba san

When: Friday Night, 11:20pm – 12:40am

Where: The Pagoda

We really can’t miss this one here at Night Vision. Since the start of the summer, the man behind 2014’s ubiquitous club banger “Okay” has been rinsing Adam Johan & Nick Garcia’s “Get It Girl”—a track released on our very own Night Vision Music (and, admittedly, it was kind’ve a Big Deal for our fledging label). Look for the giant group hug with the shirtless, curly-haired Jerk at the centre should Shiba sneak this one into his set. Self-indulgence aside, we’re very excited to see what the man at the head of the G-house movement will bring to the Pagoda subs.


Justin Martin

When: Friday Night, 12:40am – 2:00am

Where: The Pagoda

Do we really need to explain this one? Surely we don’t need to mention how, besides DJ Soup, Justin is the only DJ to play the Pagoda for the past 3 years straight, or how he has a new album dropping soon, or how our bi-weekly Night Vision meetings contain the highest density of Justin Martin fanboys per square-metre worldwide. It’s no secret that we love the guy, and we can’t wait to be there when he blows up the Pagoda once again.


Claude vonstroke

When: Friday Night, 2:00am – 3:20am

Where: The Pagoda

To kick off his last Shambhala set back in 2012, the dirtybird boss and head tastemaker declared with a huge smile “My name is Claude VonStroke, and I’m VERY happy to be here tonight.” In print, his words seem unremarkable, but those in attendance know they were spoken with the honesty and exuberance of someone who appreciates the enormity of a headliner slot at Shambhala. Returning for the first time in 3 years, expect CVS to not only play the newest bombs flowing down the dirtybird pipeline—that much is obvious—but exclusive, unreleased edits and other special surprises you’ll only ever hear live. Remember last time when he dropped that “Next Episode” edit? I’m getting chills just thinking about it.


Dusky

When: Friday Night, 3:20am – 4:40am

Where: The Pagoda

For most acts, following someone as enormous as Claude VonStroke would be a daunting task, but if any two dudes can do it, it’s Dusky. As anyone who caught their Night Vision debut last June can attest, these giants—both figuratively and literally (have you seen how tall these dudes are?)—of house and techno know their craft. Expect a flawlessly mixed set of driving, ethereal house and techno, a side of feels and a hint of rave-cheese for good measure. As an added bonus, be on the look out for DMT’s Malcs—he’ll be the guy crying manly tears of joy at the front of the dance floor.


DJ Jazzy Jeff

When: Saturday Night, 9:00pm – 10:30pm

Where: The Fractal Forest

If you were surprised to see DJ Jazzy Jeff on the Shambhala lineup, well…you’re not alone! If you grew up in the 80s, no doubt you’ll know him from his work with the Fresh Prince (AKA Will Smith) or, if you grew up in the 90s, you’ll know him as the guy who’s always getting unceremoniously tossed from Uncle Phil’s house. Nevertheless, this isn’t one of those celebrity-turned-gimmick-DJs we’ve seen in recent years. This is your chance to see a true legend of the DJ craft laying it down in the funkiest,  wildest, and yeah we’re saying it, greatest venue in the world: the Fractal Forest. Expect to hear a mixture of R&B, hip-hop and some world-class scratching.


tipper

When/Where:  Saturday Night, 1:00am – 2:00am at The Grove

                        Sunday Evening, 8:30pm - 9:30pm at The Living Room

With two sets scheduled for the godfather of glitch-hop, we can’t decide which one we’re more excited to see. Saturday night in the Grove he’ll be at his heaviest, working those beautiful Funktion-One speakers and backed by the psychedelic, mind-bending visuals of digital artist Android Jones. Sunday evening will see him play a softer, slower vibe as he brings in the sunset on the beach. Whatever your flavour, Tipper is bound to impress.


DJ zinc

When: Saturday Night, 1:00am – 2:30am

Where: The Fractal Forest

Rumour has it that DJ Zinc has something very special in store for his Fractal Forest debut. The man behind 1995’s seminal drum and bass classic “Super Sharp Shooter” was a major force in the genre for over a decade. In 2007, he left DNB citing “disenchantment with the scene” before going on to produce more house-leaning cuts, such as the 2009 monster hit “Blunt Edge”.
When the Shambhala lineup was announced, Zinc declared that he’d be returning to his DNB and jungle roots. Whether he’ll mix it up with some four to the floor is anyone’s guess, but either way we’re sure it’s gonna be fire. It is very seldom that this 20-year veteran plays on North American soil, so you don’t want to miss what might be your only chance to see DJ Zinc.


KRY Wolf

When: Saturday Night, 1:30am – 3:00am

Where: The Amphitheatre

Alongside Shadow Child, UK duo Kry Wolf head one of Night Vision’s favourite labels: the delectable, mouth-watering and always appetizing, Food Music. They’ll be leading the charge at this year’s Saturday night house jam in the Amphitheatre, and considering the variety of selections displayed on the label’s “DNA” compilation earlier this year, we’re very eager to hear what kinds of sounds they’ll bring to their first Shambhala.


Jesse Rose

When: Saturday Night, 2:30am – 4:00am

Where: The Fractal Forest

Seeing Jesse Rose’s name on this year’s poster was one of the biggest, most delightful surprises of the entire lineup announcement; the fact that he’ll be making his Shambhala debut in the Fractal Forest is just icing on the cake. Having held residencies at Paris’ Wagg, and the world-renowned Panorama Bar in Berlin, Mr. Rose is a rare treat indeed. Having already headed three outstanding record labels (Front Room, Made to Play, Play It Down), Rose kicked off his newest project “A-Sided” with “Bare Mountain”—a collaboration he did with a little known artist by the name of Claude VonStroke. What do we expect to hear from Mr. Rose? Groovy, bouncy, straight-up house music. While his timeslot directly conflicts with the festival’s much-speculated-on *~*~mystery headliner~*~*, nothing short of Frankie Knuckles’ ghost on the Pagoda decks will be gettin’ us out of the forest.


BONOBO

When: Sunday Night, 11:30pm – 1:30am

Where: The Grove

Who out there doesn’t have a soft spot for Bonobo? If such a person indeed exists, we don’t wanna know’em. Kiddddding….(but actually). Last year’s Starlite show was nothing short of magical, and we expect it will be no different when we pack into the Grove on Sunday night. Deep, elegant and eclectic grooves are what’s on the schedule, and it’s all gonna be pumpin’ from that sexy F1 rig. It really is a dream come true.


CAMO & KROOKED

When: Sunday Night, 12:00am – 1:30am

Where: The Village

What would Shambhala be without a little drum and bass sesh in the Village?! From the Hospital Records family, Austrian duo Camo & Krooked are easily one of the hottest DNB outfits in the game. With a fourth full-length album on the way soon, expect to hear a shwack of new material.


AC Slater

When: Sunday Night, 2:30am – 4:00am

Where: The Fractal forest

If you made the trek to Shambhala back in 2009, chances are you remember—errrr, chances are you were there at least (wink), for the AC Slater & Jack Beats combo in the Fractal Forest. From that time when fidget-house was all the rage, AC Slater ventured into the dubstep scene before returning once again to the bass-driven house-ish sounds we once knew. Having recently turned his L.A. club night “Night Bass” into a full-on label, AC Slater’s primed to take his career to even new heights with support from the likes of Chris Lorenzo, DJ Q and Taiki Nulight. What better way to start closing the festival than with some high-energy house and garage, before Fractal stage director Rich-e-Rich’s mandatory Monday morning session? Sleep? Never heard of it…


And that’s a wrap! Thanks for reading and have a wonderful Shambhala kiddos. Stay safe and don’t be afraid to pop in to the Night Vision camp for a quick hello! Just look for the eye in the sky…

Written by Malcs & Trevor Olsson