Written by Zack Kostaras
Photos by Rachael Polack — @rachlpolack, Juliana Bernstein— @gettiny and Felicia Garcia — @fixationphotography
The 2023 festival season has officially kicked off by yet another stellar edition of San Diego’s CRSSD Festival. Hailing as one of the most anticipated electronic music events of the year, the 14th edition of the festival returned to San Diego last weekend, delivering a weekend of unforgettable performances for a lively crowd that was ready to soak it all in and dance the weekend away.
CRSSD is held at Waterfront Park in San Diego, which is in the heart of downtown while providing a fantastic view of the water along the festival grounds. It’s a smaller music festival with only three stages but packs a lot of punch into two action-filled days of electronic music. Attendees can lean towards the house music vibes over at the Palms Stage, or can go for some more aggressive, hard hitting techno at the City Steps Stage. The main stage, Ocean View, is where you’ll find the most in-demand and unique live artists in the electronic music scene and can be quite special when the sun sets.
With the weather having been cooler and cloudier than usual the preceding week in San Diego, it was a welcome change to have the sun deliver warmer weather for day one of the festival. The Palms Stage was rocking early thanks to Chaos in the CBD, playing a healthy dose of UK garage and deep house music. Later in evening, things got rumbling at the City Steps Stage thanks to the sensational performance by Anfisa Letyago. Letyago brought her signature blend of deep, melodic techno to the stage, with pounding beats and hypnotic rhythms that had the crowd moving. Shortly after, the “Dimensions” collaboration from PopOf and Space92 was a thrilling exploration of dark, intense techno, complete with haunting synths and industrial soundscapes. Back over at The Palms Stage, the festival ended with an exploding set from Kavinsky, his first in the US in nearly six years. The set covered everything from Daft Punk to Rage against the Machine, including his signature disco-synth tunes like Odd Look and Nightcall that had the crowd wanting more.
On day two, the folks at The Palms Stage were treated to a bit of a surprise when they heard that Eats Everything’s flight was cancelled, forcing him to miss his CRSSD set. While he was supposed to play back to back with Detroit legend Seth Troxler, the remaining members of the J.E.S.u.S. supergroup (Jackmaster, Eats Everything, Skream, Seth Troxler) filled in his place by surprising the crowd to an unforgettable set filled with Chicago house classics and ending with a much harder, darker sound to get us ready for the evening. If that wasn’t enough, the festival truly came alive at the Ocean View Stage with a sunset performance from Lane 8 that was nothing short of breathtaking. Against a backdrop of stunning visuals, Lane 8 delivered an emotional set that combined dreamy melodies with driving beats, sending the crowd into a frenzy of dance and movement. And when Odesza took the stage later that night, it was clear that they were the highlight of the festival. The American electronic music duo put on a stunning live performance, with their signature dreamy sound and emotive beats elevated with their signature drum ensemble resembling a marching band. Back over at the City Steps, Deborah De Luca kept the crowd bopping with heir signature techno-pop sound. The Italian producer, known for playing techno mixed with pop, had everything from Ciara to Benny Benassi’s “Satisfaction” in her set that commanded the crowd.
When it comes to the food and beverage options, CRSSD is a cut above the rest. The festival also featured a wide variety of food and beverage options, ranging from classic festival fare like burgers and fries to more exotic options like sushi and poke bowls. And with craft beer and specialty cocktails available, there was something for everyone to enjoy.
From start to finish, festival goers were friendly, energetic, and ready to have a good time. The atmosphere was electric, with a palpable sense of excitement and anticipation in the air. Whether you were a die-hard fan of electronic music or just looking for a fun weekend, CRSSD Festival was the perfect destination to kick off spring break. We are glad this is a bi-annual festival because we can’t wait another full year until the next edition. See you in September, CRSSD.
The post Another Fantastic Return for CRSSD Festival appeared first on Festival Squad.
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