Veld On, My Friends

 In Reviews
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written by Nick Austin

Music genre: Mostly mainstream, big room house music with some trap, heavy bass, and rap tossed in

Camping: No

Capacity: Medium (roughly 40,000)

Crowd type: Young party people

Water stations: Yes; availability was noticeably improved from years past


For the first timers

If you are flying in from out of town, you’ll fly in Toronto Pearson Airport (YYZ). Veld is right between Toronto and Vaughan, so there are plenty of hotel and AirBnB options. We lucked out and found an AirBnB cheaper then most hotels that was a quick ten minute Uber away. Veld had great access for taxi/Uber drop off and pick up, and also ran a shuttle service with five stops across the city (though public transit is also pretty easy to navigate).

Considering the crowd type noted above, prepare yourself to have patience. I highly recommend doing everything you can to avoid having to pick up tickets at will call. There was almost no organization in line especially with people crowding near the front; we waited close to an hour and a half, so save your self the trouble and have it shipped to your house.

Stage layout

Both stages face the same direction, and are about a five minute walk apart. The main stage featured huge triangle LED boards and firepods along the front and sides. Lighting effects really came to life once the sun set, making nighttime sets in particular stand out. The Terra stage was much smaller but still well done, with an elevated DJ platform in front of a wall of LED lights—nothing fancy, but the artists were more than enough to capture my attention.

Musical highlights

Leading up to the weekend, my group and I were all really looking forward to seeing Galantis, Ephwurd, Excision, and Travis Scott in particular. I saw Galantis back in March at Ultra, and my girlfriend and I were pumped to have the chance to see them together again. They played an astounding set, and we loved ever minute of it.

I’m a huge Datsik fan, so catching him and Bais Haus performing an Ephwurd set was an absolute must. We worked our way up to the rail and pretty much stayed there the whole set, something I highly recommend if you ever have the opportunity. Excision took the stage right after, and nothing could have convinced us to leave our spot. The whole front row was headbanged in unison throughout, and it made my heart soar.

Unfortunately Travis Scott ended up missing his flight, so we took a detour and caught a bit of Netsky instead. He turned to drum and bass, and I really enjoyed the change in the style compared to previous sets I’d seen that day. We ended the day with Kygo’s perfect tropical house vibes.

Things to do

  • Make kandi
  • Get your face painted
  • Ride the water slide and ferris wheel
  • Hangout in the Somersby area and test your luck at some games (the wreaking ball was my favorite)

VIP or nah

We chose to go VIP this year mainly because it allowed for quicker access to the festival. VIP-only washrooms and bars are becoming standard, and non-existent lines made ordering drinks quick and easy (free water was another plus), but the biggest VIP bonus at Veld was the huge viewing platform directly across from the main stage. At the base of the platform are uncrowded grassy areas that are great for big groups who want to stay together and have a good view.

Story corner

The four of us came prepared for Datsik’s Ephwurd set on day two with squad shirts on and Ninja Nation flag flying high at the rail. Maybe it was just the excitement, but his set felt so much more personal than any other at the festival. Datsik would kind of mellow out and Bais Haus would take the decks while Troy (Datsik) shot the crowd with water guns, walked through the pit, and even gave out a huge Ephwurd flag to a particularly lucky fan. Datsik always throws down an unreal set and to finally see him do an Ephwurd set was the highlight of the weekend for me. If you ever have a chance to see him play on his own or with Bais Haus, do it, and please tell me all about it!

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