Five Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Miss CounterPoint Next Year
Five Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Miss CounterPoint
On the last weekend of September, CounterPoint, made its debut at a beautiful and colossal venue in Atlanta, Georgia. In short, CounterPoint 2012 was the best first-year EDM festival I’ve been to yet. New EDM festivals are often required to improvise solutions to problems they’ve never encountered and usually struggle. Counterpoint was a very smoothly run festival overall with little or no faults.
CounterPoint did a great job of paying attention to the little things that really mattered. They had free water refill systems, bathrooms everywhere, and plenty of shaded areas. CounterPoint also put a combination of loose yarn and straw on top of the sanded areas to provide people with a dry and danceable surface; this proved to be extremely useful after the heavy rains. Even though day two met heavy wind and rain, the festival did a great job communicating with attendees via Twitter and keeping everyone informed on any show cancellations and other important information.
Although I could be very in-depth by discussing all the little things that made CounterPoint 2012 so successful, I’ve compiled a list of the five MAIN reasons why I’ll be going to CounterPoint 2013.
1. The Huge, Beautiful, and Nature Oriented Location
CounterPoint was held 10 minutes off from public roads. The venue was an isolated 350 acre plot of land in the Fairburn area of Atlanta. The venue was massive and provided attendees with more than enough space to explore, relax, and most of all, rage.
At the center of the venue, closer to the main stages, was a pond where festival goers could relax and enjoy good vibes. CounterPoint provided attendees with hammocks, large wooden benches, and other installations to just kick back and enjoy the beautiful scenery.
Although we arrived at CounterPoint with some overcast, the venue was still absolutely stunning. Rolling hills covered the venue and were warm and beautiful and provided the venue with a great ambiance.
At the top of the hills, you could see miles away and really breathe in some of the freshest air Atlanta had to offer. Trees covered the horizons in all directions and the venue was filled with a vibrant green.
The sun started setting and the venue began to display another type of beauty. The intense sun set stretched over the red, white and blue sky, as the venue began to glow.
2. Venue Setup
I’ve been to many EDM festivals that lacked organization/structure giving off a vibe that possibly they were put together by business-centered individuals who were disconnected from the actual attendees. You know, the ones that slap a bunch of stages into a plot of land, pour some investment into the marketing the headlining acts, and then overlook the little things that make/break the full festival experience. I can’t say this was the case with Counterpoint.
CounterPoint planners definitely took the attendees experience into great consideration. The tents were a significant distance from the main stages and in between there were massive amounts of privately owned concessions with a great variety of food and other fun things to do (I never gained enough courage to ride the Starship 2000 in fear of getting motion-sick :/).
Bathrooms were conveniently located all around the venue and were always present in the high traffic areas.
From the top of the hills, you had a great view of the main stages. The Point and CounterPoint stages were directly adjacent to each other. This setup is similar to the one used at Camp Bisco and proved to be a huge success. As one artist’s set began on one stage, the other stage was being setup for the next artist who began their setup immediately after. Although there was an awkward, oversized, and gated, space for VIP in the middle of the two stages, the setup still provided attendees with performances back to back.
Stages and major points of interest were placed at the bottoms of hills. Entire stages could be seen from the top of the hills and provided attendees with the ability to just kick back and see all the action when they needed a breather.
3. Artist Quality and Variety
Although CounterPoint was definitely an ED-centered festival, the lineup still provided attendees with a variety of jam band, indie, and hip-hop artists along with the glitch-hop, electro, house, and dubstep dominant acts. Some of CounterPoint’s headinling EDM artists included, Skrillex, Avicii, Pretty Lights, Big Gigantic, Laidback Luke, Bassnectar, R3HAB, A-Trak, Zedd, and Steve Angello. The one genre that CounterPoint really lacked entirely was trance. If CounterPoint had one or two trance acts (possibly Armin van Buuren, Above & Beyond, Markus Schulz, etc) those acts would fit perfectly into the mix by providing attendees a good electronic set to coast in after a harder-hitting electro set such as Skrillex, Porter Robinson or Feed Me.
Zeds Dead at the Beat Tent
Alesso at the Beat Tent
Alvin Risk at the Back Beat Tent
4. Amazing Vibes, Powerful Energy, Beautiful People
One of the most important aspects I consider when reviewing a festival is the festival’s energy. Based on vibes and crowd ambiance alone, a festival can be a catastrophic failure or a huge success. If you’re like me, you may have been to a festival with a great lineup and amazing stage setups, but was still lacking something in the experience it provided. Most likely, that festival simply did not have that amazing festival energy in the air. CounterPoint was abundant with high energy, positive vibes, and free spirits. Although it’s easy to get caught up with line ups, fancy stage setups, and beautiful venues, the single most important attribute of any festival is its energy.
Atlanta came to rage, and CounterPoint provided attendees with a great setting to nurture and gather positive energy. Sometimes people of a certain area are not used to the high intensity that EDM festivals often generate and nurture, and are a bit more self conscious and reluctant to let go, but the people who attended CounterPoint seemed as if they had been raging for years. There were so many spiritually beautiful people at CounterPoint who were comfortable with letting go and living in the moment, while always respecting those around them; What a beautiful sight that was.
5. Visual and Artistic Elements
EDM is a highly visual genre of music. We love lasers, strobe lights, neon colors, and other visual stimuli. CounterPoint did a solid job in providing festival attendees with a diverse range of visuals. The venue was lined with art installations by graffiti artists, indie shops, and ambient lights. The stages also had impressive light setups. Although they we’re not as mind-blowing as Ultra Music Festival or Electric Daisy Carnival, they were more than adequate for a first-year festival hosted on open landscape in Georgia (both UMF and EDC have been running for over a decade and are centered higher-populated cities).
Everywhere you looked there was always something visually stimulating whether it was a stage’s light show, the illuminated Ferris wheel, art, or simply a glover, gloving the night away. Visually, CounterPoint never got boring.
With a strong debut for 2012, there are a few areas of improvement I would still like to touch on for CounterPoint 2013. In my opinion, CounterPoint should have more water refill stations that are clearly visible, smaller gated VIP areas, bigger tents, and play later into the night. With noise ordinances being an issue affecting the festival’s cutoff time, they could look to make the silent discos bigger. It would also be nice to have more silent raves running simultaneously so the lines are not long.
Besides these little improvements, I was very satisfied with the quality of the performances, the beautiful open scenery they chose, the overall organization of the 3-day event, and efficient staffing that made the festival a true pleasure.
Great job CounterPoint; I’ll see you in 2013!
UPDATE: The next CounterPoint Festival has been postponed to April 25-27 2014*. Full details: http://www.counterpointfestival.com/
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