Road To Russia- New York’s Fractal Fest Brings Immersive Music Art & World Cup Together This Summer
Summer 2018 is shaping up to be unforgettable. With festival season in full swing and the commencement of the World Cup the coming months are sure to be full of incredible moments. To bring together the worlds of electronic music and soccer we sat down with the creative team behind one of New York’s most creative hidden gems, Fractal Fest.
Centered around incredible music and an immersive meticulously constructed environment, Fractal Fest is far from average. We sat down with the head men of the Fractaltribe whose vision and love for electronic music, soccer and art caught our attention.
Aaron Fractaltribe (Event Organizer, Creative Director, Founder) & Kyle Fractaltribe (Event Organizer, Marketing Director, Promotions, Administration, Media) www.fractaltribe.org www.fractalfest.com Instagram Soundcloud
Sensible Reason: So let’s start from the beginning. How did Fractalfest get started and what’s the vision behind it?
Fractal Fest- (Aaron) Fractaltribe started in 2008 with a small outdoor party in the white mountains of New Hampshire. The event was put together in a matter of two weeks, and although the quality of production was low, we ended up inspiring a small group of people to continuously create gatherings like this. The vision was and has been to create the highest quality events we can to draw high-quality music and to interact with high-quality art. The goal is excellence and authenticity in all forms.
SR: The festival has a strong international personality. Can you tell us about how that came about and how that distinguishes you from many other festivals? ⁃
FF: (Aaron & Kyle) Psychedelic music culture worldwide is known to be a melting pot of people and cultures from everywhere. So in a way, this really distinguishes us from festivals in the United States because there aren’t many similar events here, and we’d like to bring that worldview to this country and catch up with the global scale of events in Europe and beyond. We have been influenced by many of the top festivals in the world, bringing back the best aspects we’ve experienced at all of these and putting our own spin on them.
SR: Musically what can folks expect to experience at Fractal Fest?
(Aaron) Giveth that we’ve spent the majority of our free time researching up-and-coming talent from around the world, people should expect international and regional acts that are selected for their creativity and quality of music, not for their popularity. Our artist selection consists of a wide variety of genres within the experimental electronic dance music field. We have 3 stages of ambient, downtempo., world music, chill; techno, dnb , dub, deep dubstep, breaks, IDM; and progressive, psytrance. We have published a series of 20-30 minute mini-mixes on our Soundcloud to highlight the variety of sounds that will be present inside the Fractal Forest!
SR: How important is it for you to inspire your festival-goers and give them a truly immersive experience?
FF- (Aaron) Well, that’s pretty much our primary goal and reason for being. Every aspect of the festival is curated with passion and care to create those unforgettable moments for each attendee. From the visible elements like stage design and the art galleries to the obscure, such as encountering a wandering performer or encountering a dual between the Psytrance Police and the Inner Space Pirates, everything is created to be absolutely engaging. (Interview will be published day the world cup starts Thursday June 14)
SR: The World Cup commences today and we are very excited about it. You guys will be airing the World Cup final 9n Sunday July 15 as well as the 3rd place match on the 14th. Why is it Important for you to include that aspect into the festivities?
FF: (Kyle) As noted earlier, being based in the northeast and closest cities being New York City, Boston & Montreal, we have a very global community. The World Cup is a global event that is watched by a large portion of our attendees. On top of this, several of us have roots of playing in our youth and into our adult lives. We encourage healthy living and soccer is a fantastic outlet to maintain activity in our daily lives. Lastly, it has been my observation that soccer and electronic music share complexities that activate the mind in similar ways.
SR: Most people would not associate music festival culture with sport. So why do you all want to bring those two worlds together? –
FF: (Kyle) There are clearly visible differences that exist in the culture of the two. One typically is thought of a unifying culture and one that divides. There is a beauty that lies between the lines…the teamwork & camaraderie, communication, unifying together for a common vision, celebration & togetherness. Soccer is a very expressive sport, one that if you look, allows for the celebration of individuality…much like music festival culture…you have styles of playing, formations, moving parts.
Organizing a music festival is extremely similar in that proper execution is completely reliant on a well trained and communicative team. Understanding the strengths of each individual and giving them every opportunity to succeed by utilizing their skills in the right setting. Bringing them together allows for an expression that is only even possible on a global scale once every 4 years. To be able to share the final with such a diverse group from many nations allows us to understand we are not so different, that we can come together peacefully and appreciate “The Beautiful Game”, much like we can do in our daily lives.
SR: Who are you all rooting for in this year’s tournament?
FF: (Kyle) Considering the States are out of the tournament and speaking personally, I am rooting solely for beautiful selfless play. I’m rooting for the Total Football style, for the counterattack, for possession, rooting for the absolute best in all the diverse styles of play…much like we like to provide the absolute best in a diverse array of music at Fractalfest.
Each style (in soccer & music) can be gorgeous…why limit ourselves to only one! On a storyline level – we’ll certainly be keeping an eye on Mo Salah (provided he is healthy) and how far he can carry Egypt. The Icelandic team is inspirational, being the least populated country to ever make a world cup (335,000 people); in a way, Fractaltribe feels a kinship to Iceland…we are a small festival that is often in comparisons with large ones…our team is strong and our “on field” production overachieves each and every time.
SR: Let’s have some fun. Who are your 3 favorite footballers and 3 favorite artists currently?
SR: What in your opinion is Fractal Fest’s greatest strength?
FF: (Kyle & Aaron) There are many aspects of Fractalfest we are genuinely proud of and believe to be among the reasons for this being such a special gathering… – The incredibly dedicated and passionate team of Fractilians we are fortunate to work with each year. The ones who attend meetings throughout the year, share our vision and show up to the many build/scape weekends on site & in our warehouse. They are the glue that allows this to be such a unique event. – Our ever-evolving tastes in music & ability to present a lineup based on what we are truly passionate about rather than what sells tickets. – The incredible community that has supported us throughout the past 10 years. Their openness & trust in us to present empowering and unique experiences. – The balance of music, art, interactivity, health-oriented growth, community, & attention to detail