Romania has recently boomed in festivals and concerts surrounding major names such as Rihanna, Avicii, Tiesto, David Guetta, Martin Garrix, Adam Levine, Sia, and so on. The major festival Untold which first took place last year in Cluj-Napoca, has now become a sensation, ranked The Best Major Festival. However, I am not here to talk to you about Untold; instead, I am here to talk to you about one of the many other major events being organised in Romania: the Summer Well festival.
Summer Well is a yearly festival organised every August, hence the season name. This year took place the sixth edition, and with it came the names of The Chemical Brothers, Hurts, Years & Years, The Neighbourhood, Crystal Fighters, Milky Chance, BØRNS, Blossoms, Sundara Karma, and HÆLOS. It took place outside of Bucharest in an area called Buftea, surrounded by nature and far off from the urban locations.
Slowly, Summer Well has grown. Having started on the basis of indie music, it still remains on this atmosphere to this day, though this year it experimented with electronic and pop tunes as well, leading to mixed feelings received. Personally, I was more than pleased to experience a mixture of old, traditional Summer Well and, well, now that we’ve discussed it, Untold.
Summer Well always takes place over the length of two days, ending each day with an after party. Transportation is also offered at a good price, considering taxis increase their price drastically since the location of the festival is so far away. Moreover, as is at any other major event, the feeling of being safe is present, often running into security officers patrolling the area. Lastly, delicious food is offered to please different cuisine likes, as well as a variety of drinks, of course.
A festival would not be a festival without concerts, and something to remember about this festival is that there is only one stage, so you are not bound to miss a concert by not finding the right stage. The location that Summer Well was spread upon is extended, surrounding a small lake which you can cross on a bridge and view some light arrangements. You can get free tattoos, yet, I warn, they do run out very quickly. There is a large outdoor cinema set out as well, obviously relating to the festival itself. There really is so much to do there, whether it is during the wait for the upcoming stage singers, or before the start of the festival itself.
As for the concerts themselves, nothing could have been better this year. As I mentioned before, I personally enjoyed the variety of music played. Perhaps what made it so great was the design of the stage itself, and the play of it with lights and screens. Mist would be let out, and particularly at The Chemical Brothers, the game with LED lights was stunning.
Unfortunately, I missed the first half of the first day at Summer Well, but my friends were able to fill me in with the details enough that I didn’t feel bad for missing it anymore. First up was Sundara Karma, and their indie name already gave it all of what they had for fans. It seems their fans had higher expectations from this band, as sadly it didn’t get personal. Nevertheless, it was precisely on the style of Summer Well.
Next was Borns, which, up to this day I am saddened I missed out. I constantly heard about his amazing voice and ability to reach notes that ran chills (the good type) through the audience members’ bodies.
Third came Crystal Fighters, known for a few indie songs. Once again on the pure essence of Summer Well, I was able to listen to their soft yet at the same time not so soft (any sense?) songs.
After that, things got a little crazy. Everyone was already pushing through to get their good places in the crowd for the famous band The Neighbourhood. Even if fans were a little far back from the stage, the screens made them forget that. Good lighting made it very special as well. It did seem a little short though.
Last came Hurts, who had a larger play of lights from the stage than previous concerts. It was a splendid end to a splendid day. Everyone found their way to the after party after that, excluding, of course, the ones too tired to party some more.
And then came the fabulous second day of Summer Well. Starting with the most indie and pleasant vibes from London’s Haelos, people set up their picnics in front of the stage and listened. Airplanes regularly flew right over the Summer Well set up area, arranging a pleasant show for travelers as well.
To continue with the relaxing mood came Blossoms from Manchester, England, who seemed to me to be very similar to Haelos. By this time, the place was starting to fill up
with adolescents, slowing crawling closer and closer to the stage to find good spots for upcoming concerts.
Night was already on us, almost completely in fact, by the time Milky Chance took over the stage with red and blue lights. The crowd was singing along to a beautiful voice, enjoying the combination of indie and pop.
With the approaching night came the approaching madness. Years & Years were by far the best of the festival. Their pop music made the whole audience dance and shout over their lungs. Olly Alexander even sang a mashup cover which everyone did not fail to recognise.
To finish the best night of Summer Well came The Chemical Brothers which left me breathless. It was pure madness (the good kind). Lights jumping in all directions, sounds jumbling over each other, crowd fans dancing on all floors and the real dance atmosphere. It was chaos, but the type of chaos that meant that it was a successful concert.
The after party finished the night once more, and it was then time to say goodbye. We now are all waiting to see what else Summer Well will bring for us next year!
To see pictures, read more here. (The cover image is from the same link of Summer Well’s facebook account.)