This past Memorial Day weekend, BangOn!NYC brought their expressive and creative minds to Pennsylvania’s Poconos mountains to host their third edition of Elements Music & Arts Festival within the idyllic setting of Lakewood, PA. Bringing together an eclectic lineup of some of the biggest names and brightest rising stars in house and techno, names included Disclosure, Fisher, Shiba San, Justin Martin, Seth Troxler, Damian Lazarus, Francesca Lomabrdo, Monolink (live), Stavroz (live), Atish, David Hohme, Kerala Dust and many more.
With nearly 24-hours of music playing from 100+ artists over the holiday weekend together with an abundance of art installations, summer camp activities, and wellness programming, we’ve selected some of our favorite moments from Elements Lakewood.
Disclosure at the Fire Stage | Photo credit: aLIVE Coverage
Disclosure Lights Up The Crowd at the Fire Stage
With so many hits in their catalog, it’s no surprise that the UK sibling duo managed to bring together the biggest audience of the weekend on opening night at the Fire Stage hosted by Dancing Astronaut. With pyrotechnics that soared about the trees, Disclosure fittingly opened the flamethrower-like stage with their 2013 anthem ‘When A Fire Starts to Burn’. Weaving between their own tracks mixed with a blend of garage and house tracks, Disclosure set the bar high on opening night.
Damian Lazarus at the Air Stage hosted by Mixmag | Photo credit: Get Tiny
Damian Lazarus Sunrise Set
Hosted by Mixmag, the Air Stage saw a stacked lineup of deep sound selectors with Seth Troxler, Tara Brooks, Kerala Dust, and David Hohme on opening night. However it was the Crosstown Rebels label head that provided a mesmerizing set deep within the Pennsylvanian woods that left everyone on the dancefloor in awe. With the fog rising from the lake and the sun rise and shining through the trees, Damian Lazarus flawlessly kept the party going until 6am, where he was followed up by David Hohme.
Water Stage | Photo credit: Jess Bernstein Photography
Sunlight Breaking Through at the Water Stage
While most were busy setting up their campsites and cabins on day one, day two saw hundreds of Elements festival-goers flood the beach for a lakeside party soundtracked by house and disco tunes. Hosted by Brooklyn’s House of Yes with rising acts like Boston house duo Banana Cat taking their turns on the decks, the music set up an epic beach party vibe. Surrounded by interactive House of Yes performers and a pirate ship, the sun broke through midway through the party to elevate the party atmosphere.
Crowd for Shiba San at the Fire Stage hosted by Dancing Astronaut | Photo credit: Get Tiny
Shiba San Plays On His Own Terms
Saturday night at the Dancing Astronaut-hosted Fire Stage saw the Parisian artist play to a packed out dancefloor despite ongoing rain near the beginning of his set. Originally scheduled to play from 11:30pm-01:00am, Shiba San kept the party going until nearly 02:30 am as he kept delivering his style of bumping house and his signature hit ‘Okay’.
The Golden Pony with CO2 performers at the Air Stage hosted by Mixmag | Photo credit: Get Tiny
The Golden Pony Gets Deep at the Air Stage With Fire Performers + more
Turning to a deeper selection of tracks to fit the musical atmosphere of the Air Stage, New York City’s The Golden Pony teed up a beautiful deep house set on Saturday night. Throughout his set the dancefloor was not only wow’ed by his track selection but by boob-shooting CO2 interactive performers and an extensive performance by a duo of fire performers.
Theme Camp at Cabins | Photo credit: Jess Bernstein Photography
Theme Cabin Afterparties Kept The Music Going
A very unique festival experience, various theme cabins sprawled throughout the grounds maintained the atmosphere from the festival itself well into each night and morning. Spirited festival-goers made sure to deck out their Elements home with colorful and fun decorations all the while throwing down mini-sets of their own.
Sound Healing at The Wellnest | Photo credit: Jess Bernstein Photography
Wellnest Sound Bathing Meditation to Clear the Mind
Elements’ wellness hub ‘The Wellnest’, which included healing and meditation via workshops and lectures, boasted top-notch sound bath meditation ceremonies daily that were a therapeutic experience inside of a twenty-foot teepee. Stimulating the senses in ways indescribable, this type of group meditation in such a unique sonic medium reenergized your senses, especially your hearing, before heading back out to the stages.
Forest Creatures | Photo credit: Jess Bernstein Photography
Interactive Performers and Art at Every Turn
Elements wouldn’t have been the same with the vast amount of interactive performers at every turn. Rawb Lane, the festival’s resident funtender, carried the vibes throughout the weekend with a vinyl scavenger hunt in addition to other activities. CO2 boob-shooting alien performers wowed the Air Stage, and House of Yes aerialists hanged and performed around the Water Stage’s climbable structures, and forest creatures in full-on garb roamed the woods, as well as Archie Goats’s roaming deformed clown-looking Specimenz posse. Needless to say, the performers accentuated and elevated the Elements Lakewood experience in all the best ways possible.
Viking Funeral Burn | Photo credit: Jess Bernstein Photography
Goodbye Bad Vibes at the Viking Funeral + Fire Walking
Beyond the music and art, one of the most beautiful and transformative activities at Elements was a ceremonial session for fire walking and the Viking Funeral. Held on Sunday night by the lake, those who dared were able to participate in a daring fire walk and felt an incredible sense of accomplishment and a burst of resetting energy as told by participants. Right after, activity leaders asked everyone in attendance to write down any negative thoughts or energies on their minds onto notes that they would place on the viking canoe. Soon-after being pushed away from the shore, an archer lit his arrow on fire and set the vessel ablaze as participants locked on as it burned into the lake’s darkness.
Monolink (live) at the Air Stage | Photo credit: C Squared Photography
Monolink (live) Setting the Vibe on Closing Night at the Air Stage
There’s something special about experiencing a live artist deep within the woods surrounded by nature in a uniquely intimate setting. While Elements’ Air Stage saw incredible live sets from Kerala Dust and Stavroz, it was rising Belgian DJ/live hybrid act Monolink that set up the perfect vibe for the grand finale on closing night. Wielding his guitar and creating loops and effects by the touch of every foot pedal, the Belgian singer-songwriter’s words and melodies echoed into the Lost Forest for a set in which he even admitted he didn’t want to end.