Wow, Meow Wolf is seriously delivering the goods with the second year of Taos Vortex! This may be a small festival but the lineup is mighty, featuring a rousing diversity amongst the bands and DJs across two stages. The mystical vibrations of Taos, New Mexico, and the intimacy of Kit Carson Park – accompanied by Meow Wolf’s signature of dazzling art installations – create a terrific environment to chill out and get weird.
Seeing the deeply resonant Swedish indie-pop of Lykke Li in a headlining spot gives me great joy as she’s been one of my favorite singers since 2011, while the sonorous deep house, mellow instrumentals and soaring vocals of ZHU is always a special kind of satisfying. I experienced Flying Lotus’ 3D show on his previous tour, and can confidently say the visual phantasmagoria alongside his experimental electronic, lo-fi hip-hop beats remains a music experience in a class of its own. This makes it quite the suitable successor to the extravagance of The Flaming Lips’ headlining performance last year.
Funky R&B icons George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic, who’ve been slaying since the ‘70s and flaunt absolutely wacky stage production, will be a real treat. Expect more modern funk grooves from Justin Jay’s Fantastic Voyage (the tech house producer’s eclectic jam band collective), and redonkulous horn mania from the zany brass house band Too Many Zooz. The electro-pop, funky tech house of Reggie Watts and John Tejada team-up Wajatta promises especially soulful dance tunes.
Dirtybird dad Claude VonStroke will bring his reigning house music on Friday, August 16th, and switch over to more Detroit-influenced ghettotech and funk Saturday with his Barclay Crenshaw side (that’s his real name, BTW). Fellow Dirtybird Justin Martin (who had a residency at Meow Wolf in 2018) never fails to drive the crowd into a frenzy, and Mija throws down hard as she bounces around in bumpin’ fashion across genres. I’m hoping the Desert Hearts Takeover with Mikey Lion, Lee Reynolds, and Marbs on Sunday, August 18th, closes out the festival with their wondrous reverberations of house, techno and love. You can check out the full lineup below.
Tier II tickets with camping are available for $284.50 after fees, and without camping for $228.11 after fees. Single day tickets are currently $111.58 after fees. Several adventurous add-on experiences are also available, including a stand-up paddleboard float trip down the Rio Grande to an artist’s hand-carved cave, and hour-long air balloon rides flying high above Taos, the Sangre de Cristo’s and the Rio Grande River. I would strongly suggest a trip to Meow Wolf, located 73 miles south of Taos, on your way to or from the festival as well!
*Featured image via Jess Bernstein*