Global Gathering Korea 2015

Global Gathering Korea 2015 brought electronic music fans together to close out a wild summer!  If you missed out on this year’s festival, ElectRow is here to deliver our feedback and to make sure you get all the juicy details.  If you were there, do us a favor and leave us a comment at the bottom with your thoughts.  We’d love to hear from you!

Entrance/F&B Logistics

Without security or deadly virus scares, entering Global Gathering Korea 2015 was easier and quicker than any of the other festivals this year.  Similar ticket tent & security configuration and location as the others, but it seemed to be more organized..  After picking up tickets at the test, there was only one more security check for bags only, and then you were in, unlike UMF, where there were multiple ID and security scans before you could enter.

Purchasing food & beverage was quite easy and organized.  There were not many food choices, but there were fair options and prices.  The main alcohol ticket tent had the longest lines, and should have been bigger.  The lines were not the worst ever, but much of the night you could see that the bartenders were not busy at all and waiting to serve, while there were massive lines for the tickets. Also, perhaps the configuration of the other smaller ticket tents blended in with the other tents, so if more realized that there were other places to purchase drink tickets, it may have reduced the lines considerably.

Venue

The whole festival, including the three stages, were located inside the stadium, so this was smaller of an event in size, compared to UMF which had stages and food areas located outside of the stadium.  This year’s setup was very similar to the setup in 2014.

Stage two: (Bunker stage)

This stage was considerably smaller than anyone would expect.  It was underneath the seating bleachers on the left hand side of the main stage.  The ceiling was low and it felt like an underground warehouse rave or a large basement club, instead of outdoor festival vibes.  

Although the sound and music was pumping with quality, it’s proximity was close to the main stage and the vibe and atmosphere was either too lacking or too crowded where you could not see much of the DJ booth. It was not deserving of many visits or warrant much time away from the other stages.

After interviewing a few participants, a few of them did not even realize that there was a stage there at all, or if they saw it, they thought it was just a smaller local tent stage and not a main stage of Global Gathering.

Asahi Planet stage:

This stage was located in the back of the stadium, but at a 90 degree angle to the main stage.  I think the proximity to the main stage was advantageous, since it was easily accessible and easy to see when the crowd was getting extra hyped. 

But a huge problem to many was that because it was located in the back with speakers pointing towards the main bar areas, you could hear music from both the main and planet stages at once.  This took away from the enjoyment of either stage.  It created a large dead zone of listening enjoyment, which included the longest lines at the main tent for purchasing beverage tickets. 

If they turned the stage the same way of the main stage, at least there would be a smaller area where you heard music from both stages.  I believe this was a huge mistake (for a second year in a row) and it just didn’t make much sense at all to many, so it became the biggest “complaint” of the night.  

However, I’m very happy that this stage was there because the local crews Pute Deluxe and the DISCO Experience headlined the stage.  Since they played mostly House and Future vibes, it gave relief to the EDM, Trance, or Drum n Bass of the main stage.

Unlike other festivals, when locals are playing far away from the main stage, or in a small corner with a tiny sound system, they were coincidentally showcased during Global Gathering.  There was no choice but to witness what was happening, so you pretty much could see it from all corners of the stadium and you had to pass it if you wanted to eat or use the restrooms. 

The stage was always full and even quite pumping at times.  I was quite happy to see the crowd just as hyped listening to the locals as they were with the world famous headliners.  This is one of the best points of GG and I hope that other festivals can learn from this.

Acts

NETSKY was great, but not what I was expecting.  I believe he should have been booked to do a live set with his band instead of a DJ set.  He mixed in Trap, Bass, and House with his expected Drum and Bass, but he played many popular and commercial tracks, which created a great vibe with the crowd, but was disappointing to others who expected to experience a DJ considered to be a leader of the underground DnB scene.  I think the audience got the most hyped during his set and perhaps some of Headhunterz before A&B.

Chainsmokers

I remember them as the “Let’s take a selfie” guys, so I expected them to not even be real DJs, but they were.  They were a huge surprise and quite good.

Headhunterz

As expected, the crowd loved it. I didn’t as much…Thank goodness for Pute Deluxe.

Above & Beyond

Simply amazing…. to me, along with Porter Robinson, the highlight of the entire festival season.  They were flawless and built the vibe, bringing the crowd up and down instead of a constant, everlasting bang bang.  They showed an artistry that has been forgotten or perhaps unknown to the young Korean crowd. Some of the crowd had too much of the bang bang and left as A&B started.

Those who stuck around, loved every minute of it and stayed until the very end, where the confetti cannon sprinkled a bit of magic over the trancing tune to end a successful gathering and end of the festival season.  

Final Thoughts

The web presence for Global Gathering Korea 2015 was not as strong as years past, and especially absent or lacking during the final week before the event.  There were many who just didn’t even realize it was happening or what the lineup was.   However, I think it was a successful event. A fun, and organized fest. 

It could have been much better, but it could have been much worse.  If the Planet stage was far away, I might not have had so much fun.  Overall, the music was quite good.  A little commercial, but not as much as UMF.  I was not freaking out at the main stage at all, and it didn’t hurt that Pute Deluxe gave moments of relief.

– by MF with ElectRow