ValborgsDans Open Air – Malmö’s first outdoor party welcomes home the Psytrance family
By Kai Teo
Photos from event Facebook page. Note: not all pictures are perfect, because the party was.
It was 10 degrees out as we alighted from the taxi, a light breeze carrying the fresh scent of the Öresund sent shivers of excitement deep into our souls. There was hardly any life in sight except the occasional headlights flashing past our horizon as cars sped across the bridge between Malmö and Copenhagen.
No one would’ve expected anything to be happening out here, not at this time of the year, and this hour, at least. Well, no one, except the hardcore Psytrance tribe, a special group of fearless dance warriors who possess an incessant need to stomp up some dust and the insatiable desire for the triple unicorn beat. Their extra-sensitive hearing knows how to pick up the echoes of the galaxies from the distance, and their only rule of navigation: when in doubt, just follow the music.
Foraging through thorny plants wearing my summer-festival shorts, I felt a little like a martyr on his way to sacrifice his evening to the gods of dance. “Go ahead fucking plants! Cut me! You can have my blood! But you can never, ever, have my soul.”
I know everything sounds overly dramatic. But hey, that’s how I felt and it kinda made everything more exciting. I could’ve easily summed up the above few paragraphs with, “We took a cab to a nearby parking lot and walked through some grass to get to the party.” But yea, that would sound rather bland.
With every step I took, I was closer to liberation. With every little stumble, I was closer to submitting my entire existence to the higher powers of our collective consciousness. And with every sip of my beer, I came closer to subjecting myself to the relentless assault of the rumbling beats.
And there it was, the Promised Land
– The Dance Floor.
A quick look-around revealed to us a few obvious regularities. A cosy chill-out corner with a little bar to serve up any kind of cocktails that would shame any champagne bar, balloons enough to fill up a child’s dreamland, and the familiar smiling faces that we call family.
“Ladies and gentlemen, we have gathered here today to observe the beginning of 2015’s outdoor festival season. This year’s drill is the same as the last: Full power, 24 hour, no toilet, no shower, only brothers, sisters and lovers,” I heard the skull on my Pistonhead beer can announce to the crowd.
Right Mr Pistonhead, you echo my sentiments. Now we shall stomp the shit out of the dance floor.
I crushed his face, swallowed it, and pranced, like a colourful pony with glitter for its mane, right into the thick of the action.
The crowd was composed of many of our dreadlocked hippies, but this time, they smelled a lot better because it was almost impossible to perspire in the cold. Their mixed fragrances of incense and flower power lingered in the cold, crisp air. For good measure, a few jaw-gnawing hipsters, who were taking their first-timer-ever dose of whatever substances, were joining us and discovering the beauty of psychedelic trance trance trance…
To the eyes of the conservative Ralph Lauren Polo T-shirt person, we really looked like a bunch of crazy hippies dancing around the fire to some music that sounded for like an Indian construction site.
But to us, it was a union of the senses, the alignment of our purposes, and the pure worship of human oneness. Not sure if it makes any sense to you, but yea.
At our dance floors, there’re no “I’m here to look for someone to fuck” predators, you wouldn’t find the “I need to punch someone to prove my manliness” barbarians, nor would you meet the “I specially picked out my high heels to match my lipstick” Tinder Master. The dance floor is for dancing.
But of course, with everything in life, there are exceptions. And there was this particular exception I would like to highlight a little, since I thought he was a little special. And for the sake of this article, let’s call him “Fury”.
Fury was lurking the dance floor with bloodshot eyes consumed by a 50-50 mix of senseless anger and lust. One look into those eyes and you would be inviting him to either dance with his crotch on your thigh, or a bloody fight for the dominance of imaginary pack of compatriots he has brought along, inside his bag of speed.
Being all loving and all that shit, I gave Fury the biggest smile that I can muster, projecting a strong “Love cures everything” energy in his direction. Fucking idiot, Kai, wrong move.
Conversation ensued, and all I could hear was “We are exercise”, “You are Jackie Chan”, or “You know kung fu”. For fuck’s sake, I was out there braving the cold because I wanted to be as far away from such shit as possible. But really, coming to that party wasn’t difficult for any Tom, Dick and Harry, or in Sweden, Björn, Lasse, or Nils. All you need is to know how to call a cab, have google maps, and take a lot of speed.
So there you go, I was stuck in a profound philosophical discussion with the pumped-up Fury. He wasn’t interested in my opinions on how quantum physics is starting to shed light on our spirituality and the ancient wisdom of the sages. All he could say was, “Kung fu, exercise.”
I smiled and closed my eyes, hence closing my world to his existence. First outdoor party of the year for me, nothing shall ruin it.
“Wham!” His knee went into my tummy. “Exercise! Exercise!” Fuck me. I really don’t know kung fu my friend, and I have weak lungs! Stay away from me! Fury tripped over his own ankle and fell flat onto the ground. Good, now I could be left alone. “Thud”, a rock flew straight into my chest and the pain shot through my body. But what really hit me hard, was the pure bewilderment that so far out in the remote areas of Malmö, we can still find the likes of Fury around.
I pulled him up, and gave him a bit of shit about how shit a person he was and that he should have never have been born and that he should feel guilty about being alive. Ok not really, I just asked why he did what he did, and well, the answer was simple, “Kung fu, exercise.” Discussion over.
For the rest of the party, besides honouring the dancing gods and goddesses, I was kinda busy avoiding Fury, for fear that he might unleash another round of amphetamine-induced stupidity on me. Not cool Fury, not cool.
Whoever you are, if you’re reading this. Be nice in the future.
As the sun kinda rose and lit up the sky, the intensity of our intergalactic beats had not let up. We were still going going going going and it seemed like our spaceship would never land.
But that’s how we like it.
My aging body, however, was telling me that dancing a marathon might not be its ideal choice of physical activity any longer. And as I reached my hands up to the heavens to touch the stars, I briefly fell asleep standing up. I knew that there would be loads more parties to come, and loads more chances to love the psytrance family again. So I should honour the sleep monster instead.
And as I embarked on the gruelling journey home (this time without a taxi), I smiled stupidly to myself while adjusting my crooked bindi, and sincerely thanked the entire crew, and all the dancers and lovers, and of course, the Legendary Fury, for giving such an intense kick-start to this year’s festival season. See y’all in space soon.
Erm, no, not you, Fury, you stay home.