Morocco is currently host to a multitude of festivals that draw an international crowd every year. Most of them have a focus on displaying Moroccan culture through several outlets such as hosting local Gnawa bands or setting up traditional music workshops, but this approach was most prominent in Atlas Electronic festival since its inception in 2016.
Fast forward to 2018, Atlas has established itself as one of the top festivals in the country with sizeable number of attendees heading there on its second edition in 2017. The lineup for the three day 2018 edition has been announced, and will be once again returning to Villa Janna Ecolodge between August 30th and September 2nd. Following the same layout as the past editions, the festival happenings will be taking place between three areas, the amphitheater or the “amphi stage”, the pool stage and a third stage to be hosted by Amsterdam’s Red Light Radio.
The opening concert on August 30th will see performances from a host of local Moroccan collectives like Groupe Amazigh Blues, Asmaa Hamzaoui & Banat Timbouktou and Génération Taragalte. Also last year’s last minute performance that brought together Dutch producer Philou Louzolo and wedding band Groupe Bana will be returning once more by popular demand. Sharing the same bill with these names will be L.A based DJ C.Love aka Zouyina, Egyptian producer Kareem Lotfy & Aesthes (live) and outlandish Italian percussion duo Ninos Du Brasil.
The Amphi stage will be running all three days and will host the bigger, better known names of the lineup. Such names include Call Super, Jamie xx, John Talabot and a six hour set from Hessle Audio (Ben UFO, Pangaea and Pearson Sound). Also performaing will be Deena Abdelwahed, Deborah Ipekel, Esa Williams both separately and alongside Mim Suleiman who made a splash with their performance at Dekmantel’s Lente Kabinet festival in Amsterdam this past may. Several Akuphone artists like Cheb Gero and Ko Shin Moon will also take to the stage.
The Pool Stage will be host to more acts as it runs longer throughout the day witnessing sets from other Dekmantel favourites like Job Jobse b2b De School resident Elias Mazian, Max Abysmal, and Lena Willikens alongside other prominent names like RAMZi, Peter Groovin’, J-zbel to name a few.
Now, like we said, the festival highlights are not just musical but include a plethora of other activities that you can take part in, and we’re not just about the odd yoga workshop. Atlas this year will feature anything from a photography workshop by festival photographer Tim Buiting, to a Gnawa academy, to a bike tour to discover the neighboring Palmeraie area, to a tea or cooking workshop, and that’s still not everything. There will be art exhibitions by nine artists encompassing all sorts of visual and auditory arts as well.