Beginning October 25th, musicians from the world over will ascend onto picturesque Asheville, North Carolina, for one of the States premiere musical events. Although the inaugural Mountain Oasis Electronic Music Summit boasts acts like the reclusive Neutral Milk Hotel, legends Nine Inch Nails, The Orb and Gary Numan, EDM-standouts Bassnectar and Pretty Lights, plus genre-blending new-comers including Shlohmo, Disclosure, and T. Williams, music is just a portion of the three-day event. Produced by AC Entertainment, the minds behind festivals like Bonnaroo and Forecastle, this intimate, boutique festival is an opportunity for aural adventurers to take in new sounds, a great location, interesting fare, and leave with memories they will never forget.
Located at the home of Moog (the festival launched three years ago as “Moogfest”), weekend revelers have the opportunity to sit in on a Saturday roundtable featuring the genius of Paul Vo, Richard Devine, Tony Rolando, and August Worley. Having developed a symbiotic relationship with Asheville over the last few years, the festival further celebrates the essence of the city with a local craft beer experience, and “Trick-or-Treat” discounts at establishments ranging from general stores to tattoo parlors. With the festival spread out across five venues, and performances not starting until the evening, AC Entertainment wants you to explore, and these discounts offer yet another incentive to navigate around this “Mountain Oasis” — the term Ashley Capps (the President of AC Entertainment) uses to lovingly refer to the festival's home.
While the festival is complete with several electronic musicians, don't tag Mountain Oasis as another EDM festival that has popped up during the last half-decade. According to Capps: “Programmatically, [Mountain Oasis] is simultaneously more focused [than Forecastle or Bonnaroo] but also gives us the opportunity to program some edgier artists that are a little more out of the box, like William Basinski, for instance.” The mastermind behind the longevity of Bonnaroo, Capps also understand the importance of developing a unique identity for a festival, something that comes naturally for a festival held over Halloween weekend at one of the nation's most creative communities. “I think the most important attribute of a successful festival is to focus on the details that create a unique and memorable experience that stands apart from the others,” Capps tells AP. “Mountain Oasis is a little journey, nestled in the heart of a wonderful community that also offers a lot of delightful surprises.”
Each attendee will take something a little different away from Mountain Oasis; however, we definitely recommend that the journey route through Bassnectar, Neutral Milk Hotel, Rustie, and XXYYXX on Friday, Godspeed You! Black Emperor, Animal Collective and Ninc Inch Nails on Saturday, and then wrap through Sunday with Darkside, Disclosure, and The Orb. But to be fair, wherever the weekend takes you, the path will be rife with positive opportunities and new friends.
As Capps jokes, if Mountain Oasis was to dress up for Halloween, it would be a “trickster…full of surprises.” Luckily for all of us, tickets are still available here.