North Coast 2016 [Recap]

Chicago’s summer music festival season has ended with North Coast Music Festival over the last 6 years. Summers Last Stand, as it has grown to be known, features a mix of hip-hop, electronic bands, and EDM artists over 3 days inside Chicago’s Union Park. This year’s lineup featured crowd favorites such as; Bassnectar, Logic, Galantis, Umphrey’s McGee, The Polish Ambassador, Keys n Krates, The Floozies Zedd and Odesza. Having these favorites spread across all 3 days guaranteed the festival to be packed each day.

NCMF Full Lineup

The silent disco, which has featured many local up and coming artists over the years, moved to an uncovered outside stage. The two channel headphones allowed you to switch between two artists as you jammed out in Union Park’s tennis courts.

Heineken, one of North Coast’s biggest corporate sponsors, delivered something no one expected a covered dome that ended up being the hottest stage. It was exclusively for the 21+ crowd and had a limited capacity. The dome featured Farley Jackmaster Funk, Golf Clap and Kastler, who blew the dome’s roof and your mind when the projected visuals and lasers danced above your head.

The festival grounds expanded a little further than last year to create more walking room between the stages and to add more vendors. The art displays were spread out through the festival grounds, which rewarded those that explored the grounds.  There was even a hang out lounge (similar to the one we found at Mamby’s VIP section) near the vendors for Coasties to chill out at.


If you bought VIP tickets you were offered free water to beat the heat, separate viewing areas, and a new VIP zone in between the two main stages. There you had a separate bar, air-conditioned bathrooms, and of course an up-close and personal view of the two main stages. If you kept your eyes open you could have met not only local Chicago artists, but headliners as well.


North Coast is not my favorite React Presents festival and that has not changed after its 2016 edition. It has outgrown its current location years ago, which feeds my annoyance of large crowds (yes I’m an old man), which is why the VIP area was a pleasant surprise for me. The festival mirrors Summer Set or Summer Camp both of which require travel, which is why NCMF will always be popular. It also completes one festival season and opens a new one. On that note it’s time to plan for Freaky Deaky and Reaction NYE.

North Coast After Parties!


Make sure to purchase your North Coast After Party tickets!! We are just one week away!


Cerise Rooftop at the Virgin Hotels
Sleigh Bells (DJ Set)
Tickets available at

the MID
Tickets available at

Prysm Nightclub
Galantis (DJ Set)
Tickets available at

Bottom Lounge
Louis Futon
Tickets available at

Concord Music Hall
Umphrey’s McGee
Tickets available at

the MID
Keys N Krates (DJ Set)
Tickets available at

Prysm Nightclub
Ty Dolla $ign
Tickets available at

Bottom Lounge
Joey Purp & Saba with Ravyn Renae
Tickets available at

Concord Music Hall
Vulfpeck & TAUKing McGee
Tickets available at

the MID
Sam Feldt
Tickets available at

Prysm Nightclub
Tickets available at

Farley Jackmaster Funk, Jesse Saunders, Gene Farris & More
Tickets available

North Coast Music Festival 2016 Daily Artist Lineup Announced + More

North Coast Daily Lineup Banner

Yesterday, North Coast Music Festival (NCMF) announced their daily artist lineup and release single day tickets for the seventh annual installment – happening Labor Day Weekend at Union Park! Single day tickets start at $55 for GA, and $90 for VIP, while two-day passes remain reasonably priced at $159 for GA, and $259 for VIP. Discounted two-day general admission and VIP passes are still available, so get yours now before prices go up. Stream the official NCMF playlist with nearly 3 hours of music featuring 40 Coastie acts from the 2016 lineup now on Spotify!

Continue reading

5 Must See Acts at Freaky Deaky


As Freaky Deaky, draws near, I figured it would be a good time to share my Top 5 Must See Artists for this weekend. Please note my musical taste is not the same as yours, so don’t be mad if your favorite did not make the list.

5. Bassnesctar

bassnectar - freaky deakyOMG! I know, why isn’t the bass-god himself #1?!?!? Well that’s easy for me. After seeing Bassnectar 3 times (Electric Forest 2012,2015 / NorthCoast 2014) he never lived up to not only the HYPE (and boy there is hype) and to the quality of any of his actual albums. I love the last two albums he released but I never had the same feeling when seeing him perform.  If you’re not at Markus Schulz on Friday Night, I can guarantee you’ll be at Bassnectar. #Hype

4. Benny Benassi

benny benassi - freaky deaky

The last time I saw Benny was on the first night of Spring Awakening 2012 when his set was cut short due to incoming rain and the fact that Skrillex still needed to take the stage. Quite easily his set was one of the best of the entire festival. With large arsenal of heavy hitting original tracks and years of songs to pull from his repertoire, Benny always brings it and makes himself relevant to any crowd. If you want a good show from an “old” DJ that will surprise you check out Benny on Saturday at the Big Top, unless you prefer to see Riff Raff of course.

3. Griz

griz - freaky deaky

Griz, Gramatik and Big Gigantic hit my ear drums roughly around the same time, but over the years Griz has stood out. Not too soft and not too had, Griz blends his sax play with funky beats to perfection. His sets always feel like a party and by the time it’s over you want more. You lose your perception of time as you dance and that’s exactly what you want to do in music.

2. Dubfire

dubfire - freaky deaky

As half of the Grammy Award winning duo Deep Dish, Dubfire has achieved quick success while perusing his own electronic journey focusing on dark techno. If you wear black, nothing but black and listen to techno, this one is a no brain-er. As the  set up man to Richie Hawtin at The Crypt (Underground Stage) on Sunday, you can expect an older calmer, but very enthusiastic crowd that knows their stuff.

1. Armin Van Buuren

armin van buuren - freaky deaky

Ever since Armin Van Buuren cancelled his Armin Intense tour stop at the United Center  last April (2014) due to the unfortunate passing of his father-in-law, Chicago’s Trance Family has been waiting on his return. React has been incorporating more Trance artists in their festivals this year with curated stages, shows  and of course the booking of Armin as a headliner; which definitely fills the Trance Family Hearts with love. If you were ever curious about trance or just want to see one of the longest tenured and top DJs