After months of hype, Outlook 2013 rolled round again boasting another incredible line up of the very best in hip hop, house and drum and bass.
The opening party spoke for itself. a 2000 year old amphitheatre, The Wailers, beautiful weather. Despite the odd technical hiccup during The Wailers performance, they carried on with their set and nostalgia filled the amphitheatre. the perfect way to begin the Festival.
The first day went off in full swing with both Dispatch and Exit hosting stages, it was difficult deciding who to see but dBridge was on the top of the list. However the night began with good friend Visionobi who was making his hosting debut in the Moat with Sabre and Halogenix on the decks. Their set was varied with a few Ivy Lab melodies contrasted with heavy rollers and trademark experimental sounds. The rest of the night was an alternation between both stages and the music quality was outstanding at all times. I also managed to catch the last half hour of Dub Phizix set who was joined by the majority of the Broke n English crew who ended the night with a hilarious rendition of ‘Home And Away’
Friday began with the Dispatch boat party, the whole Dispatch crew followed suit from the night before proving that they throw epic parties whether at land or sea. Afterwards it was straight to the Metalheadz take over of the clearing stage where I rushed to catch one of my favouritre producers, Lenzman who warmed up the stage nicely with his Summer jams. The rest of the Metalheadz crew were all outstanding and with a packed stage all night, showing that drum and bass is very much alive and well.
After a heavy onslaught of drum and bass the night before, we decided to veer away and catch Submotion Orchestra, I’d only seen them once before at Outlook 2011 and remember being blown away, this year was no different. Ruby Woods beautiful voice echoed throughout the Harbour making the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. Ram also proudly hosted the Harbour with incredible sets from Andy C and Teebee. Saturday night was also a proud moment for the Southampton crew once again as Gerra, Stone and Visionobi took over the Ballroom, the intimate venue was filled with familiar faces and the boys relished in the moment by providing an energetic set from start to finish. Visionobi also finished the evening hosting Ant TC1 and Skeptical on the Harbour stage. Despite Wilkinson not being in attendance and playing a totally different sound to what he is famous for, they engaged the crowd fully for the last hour.
Sunday was about one thing, Critical in the Moat. I was extremely excited to see Ivy Lab for the first time and I’m still having flashbacks of singing ‘How Can I Make It Clear’ at the top of my lungs, possibly a track highlight of the Festival. Foreign Concept’s set was also another highlight as he showcased his recent ‘Tag Team’ EP alongside his old classics. Things got a little murkier with Enei, Mefjus and Emporer all delivering heavy sets that kept the crowd energised. It’s always hard on the last night of the festival to keep the vibes going but they ensured that lethargy would not set in until 6am.
I also took the time to check out the Harbour throughout the night and saw LTJ Bukem educating the masses. Also the final set of Outlook 2013, Alix Perez and Icicle kept the high energy theme and played one of the best sets of the entire Festival. As the last track was pulled up, realisation began to set in that it was nearly over for another year. With this being my third time at Outlook I thought I knew it all and knew exactly what to expect, but the beauty of Outlook is that it never fails to impress year after year.