100 Nights of Summer: The Electric Fields 2017 Recap

Day #94: Festival #13 

The classic Scottish mega-festival, T in the Park, saw its demise last year, and the other festivals in Scotland are in no hurry to replace it. Now in its fourth year, Electric Fields is growing at a steady pace, selling out and growing a bit larger each year — but not too large. Set in the lovely Scottish countryside (and overlooked by a stately castle), this two-day festival is one of my top picks of the summer.

Running the Numbers

Electric Fields Festival Stats:
Dates:
September 1-2, 2017
Editions:
4
Attendance:
5,000 
Artists:
35
MFW Beer Index:
€5.60
Lowest Temperature: 6C (43F)
13th Festival Stop 2015:
Open Air Gampel 
13th Festival Stop 2016:
Dimensions

100 Nights of Summer Stats:
Days on the Road:
95
Countries Visited:
15
Festivals Attended:
13
Festival Days:
41
Festival Days w/Rain:
6
Days Camping:
23

Ideally Sized Festivalling

I’ve been to mega-festivals in Belgium and Denmark, EDM pool parties in Serbia, and camped out with thousands in England and Slovakia. They’ve all been amazing experiences, but Electric Fields really captured what I want out of a music festival, including a friendly crowd, spacious camping, beautiful scenery, and of course, lots of incredible music. These small capacity boutique festivals springing up in the last few years will only continue to prosper as the larger fests fight for their larger crowds. And that’s fine with me.

Maybe, I Don’t Hate Kids After All

Little kids have always bothered, but after this weekend in Scotland, it’s possible that I just hate American kids. Electric Fields is filled with Scottish children of all ages who apparently never cry, never fuss, and never act like tiny, drunk assholes. Lots of my friends would never dream of taking their family to a festival, and that’s a shame, because something like Electric Fields proves that you can have an amazing festival for all.

Musical Highlights

Bands I saw in order of my enjoyment

  • Arab Strap
  • Band of Horses
  • Car Seat Headrest
  • Glass Animals
  • Whyte Horses Experience
  • Foxygen
  • Temples
  • The Jesus And Mary Chain
  • Frightened Rabbit
  • Kate Tempest
  • Real Estate
  • This is the Kit
  • Dizzee Rascal

There’s so much quality music packed into two short days at Electric Fields, and yet with the small size and proximity of the stages, I got to see everything on my checklist. It was a musical roller coaster of a weekend with Band of Horses and Frightened Rabbit as my top picks on the main stage for each night. Glass Animals didn’t have to contend with the famous “pineapple ban” up here in Scotland and grinning fans gladly provided an influx of fruit.

My favorites of the weekend though were reserved for the smaller second stage tent where I got to see Arab Strap closing out the festival to their hometown(ish) audience. That was a real treat along with sets by Foxygen, Temples, and the always intense Kate Tempest.

Final Thoughts

A lot of ink has been spilled over the imminent music festival bubble bursting. I’ve been reading about it since starting this website eight years ago, but with fests like Electric Fields on the scene, I wouldn’t worry too much. This is a DIY festival done right, starting small and continuing to evolve each year. I’m already looking forward to next summer.