There's a party in Croatia, and it does not disappoint. If any festival represents UK underground music, its Outlook. Showcasing the very best from Dubstep, Grime, Garage, DnB and Rap, this festival is a melting pot of our best homegrown talent. Outlook was originally set up by SubDub, the events outfit from Leeds, so its no wonder you get unbelievable lineups year after year. Oh and the soundsystems. The soundsystems are truly special and put many much larger festivals to shame. The setting is key to the magic of Outlook, but we'll get to that later. To top it all off, the festival hosts a plethora of boat parties with some seriously good variety. Has Outlook nailed the balance of a smaller festival? Keep reading to find out.
Photography plays a big part in telling a story, so we make sure to locate the best images possible to give our reviews clarity. That's why it's no suprise we have linked up with two of the best in the scene Eddy Maynard and Rob Jones.
Did It Sober
Outlook lineups are second to none. Year on year, the festival has been hosting the creme de la creme of underground music. This year the roster is a perfect pick n mix of UK sound, with all of Outlook’s regular Dubstep heavyweights from Deep Medi and co playing alongside Bassline badboys Crucast. If you are serious about proper soundsystems, or you just want to experience ridiculously good speakers you will have an absolute field day at Outlook. Honestly, its mad. The emphasis on sound engineering truly set Outlook apart from the vast majority of its competition. After all, there is nothing worse than going to see your favourite artist only to have the weakness of the system ruin it. Highlight sets from DnB dons S.P.Y. and Break made you realise how good the rigs were.
The elite of Dubstep and Grime are represented at the festival every year, and this year saw some insane sets. DmZ, Prez-T and Kahn and Neek shook the Fort with some serious sub action, but Slimzee's set w/ Flowdan and Killa P was the icing on the cake. Check the snippet below.
The setting is one of Outlooks biggest selling points. The 19th century Fort Punta Christo makes for some truly unique stage experiences. Not all of the stages are within the fort, but you have to visit the ones that are a part of it like the moat and the ballroom. The landscape surrounding Outlook is beautiful, and we recommend you go to the festival during the day for a few reasons...
The Beach Stage. The beach stage is a great way to soak up the sun and take in some serious dubplates. They go on most of the day and you can go for a lie down on the beach in between skanking sessions.
You’re in Croatia in the summer. Make the most. You haven’t travelled all the way to Croatia just to go out in the evening?
But seriously, where else can you rave in a 150 year old Fort? and don't say Dimensions smart ass.
BASS HEAVEN AKA THE MOAT STAGE
If you know ANYONE who has been to Outlook, they have definitely boasted about how mental the boat parties are. The boat parties run across the entire festival, and cover every genre in sight. There are 40, yes 40 boat parties including crazy takeovers from Exit Records, Bandulu, Metalheadz and Swamp 81 to name a few. The boat parties allow you to make the most of your surroundings whilst rattling your chest with yet more outstanding rigs. We are not sure how they managed to smash it on a boat, but here we are. You better be ready when the tickets release because they go FAST, with many selling out in minutes. The boat parties are a must. Going to Outlook and not attending a boat party would be like going to a rave and just drinking tap water...oh wait.
Did we finally find a crowd who would refuse to sing the dreaded "Whoo there it is" chant?
Too right we did. Outlook is a rare gem of a festival that is not full of over eager kids who will mosh to literally any song, Instead it attracts an older crowd who go to actually enjoy the music. This is probably partly down to the financial barrier of attending a Croatian festival, but we aren't complaining. Although we like to believe the crowd shouldn't effect your time too much, it definitely does have a big impact whether you like it or not. At some festivals you are crammed in next to thousands of people, who don't really care about the next raver, this isn't one of those places. At Outlook you will have room to dance without some sweaty shirtless goon rubbing against you.
Even on the boat parties, where there isn't much free space, everyone is sound as fuck. Everyone apart from the girl who jumped of the side of the Crucast boat party and was treading water for a good 10 minutes. Big ups to you!
Whilst the general public and local people are a very welcoming and lovely people, the security inside Outlook are notoriously corrupt. It is a great shame that such an outstanding festival is tainted with hefty fines for little or no reason. This is not word of mouth and rumours, it is a serious issue, we have been informed of people being brutally beaten up and even having there hands broken in extreme cases. Outlook should look at sourcing better security who won't take advantage of ravers who have spent their good earned cash to have a good time, not to be beaten up and extorted. This is the only true con of Outlook. Taking the corruption out of the equation would elevate it's experience to new heights.
This is a bit of a tricky one, as the festival itself is inexpensive. Whilst an Outlook ticket may cost you just over £100, the costs of essentially going on holiday for a week all add up. We've broken it down into a few main categories.
Accommodation - Unless you're uncle John has a Villa round the corner, you are going to be paying for accomodation for around a week. We would recommend a villa/apartment over camping to get the full experience of a holiday/festival combo.
Flights - This can be expensive if you fly direct, but we've got a pro tip to save some raving funds.
*Pro Tip* - Fly to Venice Marco Polo Airport and get a coach to Pula, you'll save money and get the chance to explore Venice whilst you're at it.
Spending money - The general cost of living is pretty low out in Croatia, but this can make it easier to get carried away.