it hits 3pm and the thumping bass which has kept me up all night stops. cops? has someone got shot?
it’s siesta time at the teknival (a massive free festival of electronic music in north east france. 3 til 6 all thirty odd pirate sound systems simultaneoulsy switch off. its just too hot for raving. even for a pirate. dancers and djs seek out a shady corner to chill out. a friend jokes about seeing them downing pills and powder. pulling out chairs and tables. uncorking the wine and tossing the salade. hes not far wrong.
it’s a weird one. after years of illegal raves sarkozy’s government granted a space for this year’s ‘french tek’. good old sarko. yup. and a lovely little glade it is too… a runway in the middle of a military base ringed with razor wire, armed soldiers and the occasional tank.
walk onsite and its difficult to tell the difference. chunky ex military vehicles, khakis, shaved heads and short tempers.
Jigsore soundsystem trumps the rest. all this way and you end up in front of a bristol sound system! familiar faces surface. its stokes croft in a french field. minus the burning barricades maybe.
it’s not the e-fuelled friendliness of 90’s britain we all hear about from veteran ravers but ketamine isn’t on the menu. so its no bristol freeparty either. no dribbling wrecks writhing in puddles of bodily fluid. it seems more about the hardcore speed and tekno. funny how much a music scene gets defined by its drugs.
forty euros for a gram? fifty? just cos i’m from britain doesn’t make me a ket dealer! mind you, those prices and it’s hard to find a brit who ain’t. try the tents over there. the guys sat outside in the sun. only mad dogs and englishmen. only fools and horses.