Quest started off, like all good festivals, as a party wherever there was space. In the case of Hanoi, that meant getting out of the crowded, sensitive-eardrummed city and into nature.
Luckily enough, there’s one of Vietnam’s most spectacular repositories of nature fairly close by — Ba Vi National Park. On the weekend of Nov. 28 to Nov. 30, Quest will once again take over the Son Tinh Camp, with a mix of Vietnamese and international DJs and bands, fire spinning, dancing, costume making, glitter, yoga, an arts parade and all the ridiculous things you’ve come to expect from a trip into the collective subconscious.
Although the lineup isn’t set, expect Hanoi’s best electronic types to make appearances, and a growing cadre of talents from Southeast Asia and beyond. But avoid the fine print — this isn’t a canned festival, the likes of which have sprung up in recent months throughout the country. Quest isn’t selling anything. It’s a celebration of that fluttery feeling you sometimes get on a good night, by and for those who find their truth in watching the sun come up, moving to beats that fit their natural rhythm, being around like-minded people as they glimpse something transcendent, something that makes them feel more whole.
Music director Luke Poulson — aka DJ BlipBlop of Nam Jam Collective — thinks evolving Quest is the next big step in the evolution of the Vietnamese underground.
“Since arriving in Vietnam I have been blown away by the grassroots music scene here. After experiencing my first Go Lim! concert I could see that Hanoi would be a hotbed of underground talent. As the years and artists have come and gone I have seen a slow but sure emergence of exciting independent music from both locals and internationals living in Hanoi and around Southeast Asia. Most prominently, I have witnessed the growth of a healthy electronic scene here within Hanoi.
“It’s my desire to show off the best that Hanoi has to offer by putting on a festival curated by some of the most optimistic and creative people in the city, playing some of the best music we have to offer and showcasing some of the naughtiest DJs from all over the world. The fact that we will do this within the beautiful landscape of northern Vietnam is the icing on the cake. Quest is going to be banging.” — Ed Weinberg
At A Glance
WHERE: Son Tinh Camp in Ba Vi National Park
WHEN: Nov. 28 to Nov. 30
HOW: Tickets on sale at Commune (201 Trich Sai, Tay Ho, Hanoi) and Hanoi Social Club (6 Hoi Vu, Hoan Kiem, Hanoi)
A Tentative List of Performers
DJs — Headliner: Alton Miller [US], Matt Gooch [UK], Humb [Jigsore / UK], Sly Philly [Jigsore / UK], Mr Mischief [DU], Pete Talbot [UK], GiGi Mix [Ghetto Funk.com / FR], Niko Power [Ghetto Funk.com / FR], BlipBlop [Quest Festival / UK], Maggie [Motion / FR], OneNatOn [UK], Mark Harris [Gingerworks / UK], Jody O'Dea [Fusion Oi / IRL], Proininsias [IRL], Cybersnack / AIM [Zeroes & One / GR], Porgus Minimus [UK], Osh [UK], DJ Ngoc Mobile [Rockstore / VN], Lark Minkous [UK], Spectrum [Waxworks / London Underground / UK], GhosTV [Jigsore / UK], Kulture [Synergy Music Production / SA], Vaughan [Zeroes & Ones / London Underground / UK], Incognegro [USA], 1dan [Atmospheric Existence Records / UK], Pierre [Skank The Tank Sound System / FR], Lizo [Hanoi Rock City / Xai / UK], Neil Taylor [Fusion Oi / UK], Pandrava [Motion / UK], Tung Tim [Sub Elements / VN], DJ Geometrix [JP], Fergal [Audio Autopsy / IRL], Dee.F [Hanoi Rock City / Xai / VN], Cambodian Sound System [UK], DJ Chamber [Bass Kitchen / UK]
Live Music — Super Mecha Sasquatch [UK/VN/USA], Proportions [VN], Bluematals [VN], Mimetals [VN], 6DUK [VN], Tra Chanh [VN], Xai [UK/VN], Electric Yard Dogs [UK/USA]