After a 3 hour flight, 5 hour transfer and 10 bottles of water I finally arrived at the Dimensions site in Pula, Croatia. It was definitely worth the journey. The festival is split between an abandoned fort, a well-equipped campsite and a beautiful beach. It felt like paradise.
Asides from the reasonably priced ticket (£135) and beautiful location the real attraction of the festival was, of course, it’s line up. As I stared at the program, I’d never desired quite so much to be able to clone myself. Over the course of 4 days I saw the likes of Benji B, Daphni, MPortico Quartet, Mala and Kowton and that’s to name a few. It wasn’t just the acts that were of a high calibre, the sound systems and production were like no other. As I drifted from stage to moat to ballroom, I felt seriously spoilt. The diverse nature of the music policy meant that I never got bored.
As a new addition to this years festival, Dimensions kicked off with an opening concert set in a beautiful amphitheater just a short taxi or boat ride away from the site. Andrew Ashong began proceedings, followed by Portico Quartet, Mount Kimbie and finally Bonobo. It was a very relaxed affair and the perfect way to begin a week of madness.
This festival is truly designed for 24 hour party people. During the day there were beach parties, which provided a soundtrack for the sunbathers, and the music in the main arena lasted from 10pm-6am. Throughout the weekend there were a series of boat parties curated by labels such as Idle hands, and Eglo Records and NTS Radio. I boarded the Subdub boat, which featured Mungo’s Hifi, Brother Culture, Author and Iration Steppas. Those four hours were hands down the best part of the festival; the music was on point, and the atmosphere was amazing.
Whilst the boat may have been my highlight, it was closely followed by the hotly anticipated Three Chairs, a collective started by Moodyman, Theo Parrish and Rick Wilhite. On the Saturday night Marcellus Pitmann joined them in the Courtyard, where they went b2b for a record 9 and a half hours. The hype surrounding this crew was entirely justified and the crowd remained consistent throughout, dancing, chanting and drinking right through until 6am.
Another positive note to Dimensions was the clientele. With just a 5k capacity, the festival felt intimate and the atmosphere was incredibly chilled. At no point did I see fighting or aggressive behavior that is common at other festivals and the security and staff were pleasant. The only real downsides to the festival were the prices. Croatia is a relatively cheap country but the food and drinks prices on site were well above local rates. However it is possible to bring your own food and alcohol onto the campsite, so I would recommend stocking up at your local supermarket beforehand. There is also a token system instead of money which a lot of people complain about, but it didn’t really bother me – do note that you can’t change tokens back so its best to change a little at a time so you don’t end up with more than you need at the end.
So, if you’re a fan of techno, house, reggae and disco and you want a tan whilst listening to some of the world’s finest musicians look no further than Dimensions Festival.
-Lucy AB Molloy