Since its inception back in 1999, Camp Bisco has been one of the Northeast’s premiere summer music festivals. Since day one, the festival has been securing the freshest talent for its lineups, tapping some of our favorite acts from the jam, funk, hip-hop, livetronica, and greater EDM scenes. From July 13th-15th this year, Bisco will be returning to Montage Mountain in Scranton, PA, bringing with them a stacked lineup featuring six sets of The Disco Biscuits in addition to performances by Bassnectar, Pretty Lights Live, GRiZ, Lotus, Gramatik, and many more (purchase tickets here).
The namesake of the festival, the Philly-born Disco Biscuits are true pioneers of “trance-fusion,” as the band’s sound seamlessly melds jam and electronic. Thus, Camp Bisco became one of the first music festivals in North America to feature big names in both the jam and electronic scenes. In fact, some could argue that the Biscuits and Camp Bisco have always been ahead of the times, consistently drawing huge crowds with their diverse lineups for years by including EDM in a modern festival setting before it was standard.
Look at some of the artists on the early lineups, and then consider where they are now in their careers. Take Bassnectar, for example. When he played on the third stage at Indian Lookout Country Club in Mariaville, NY in 2007, despite an incredible set, nobody in the crowd would have been able to predict the immense success that Lorin would go on to have. After his debut at the festival, year after year, Bassnectar sets at Camp Bisco got bigger and bigger, coinciding with his meteoric rise to one of the most well-known names in the electronic music world. This year, Bassnectar will be returning once again to Camp Bisco for what is sure to one of his most powerful performances yet.
[courtesy of Good Wolf Session]
Acts like STS9, Lotus, Umphrey’s McGee, the New Deal, and even Thievery Corporation (both DJ and live band sets) are all acts that were initially featured on the festival’s early line-ups and that have grown alongside Camp Bisco. Now, these artists are playing sold-out venues across the country to huge crowds, and there is something to be said about Camp Bisco ability to identify highly successful acts before they’ve taken off.
Camp Bisco has always had its finger on the pulse of the next big thing in the music scene. Amon Tobin has performed multiple times, including a mind-blowing performance for his ISAM set, which completely changed what can be accomplished visually in the live music scene. Simon Posford and his various psy-trance and dub projects including Hallucinogen, Younger Brother, and first-ever U.S. performance of the Shpongle Live Band have all made appearances at Camp over the years. The Shpongle Live Band set was about as special as it gets, with Raja Ram flying in special for the performance.
Outside of the bands or artists that have grown on a parallel trajectory with Camp Bisco, the lineup has always featured massive international acts every year. LCD Soundsystem, Cut Copy, The Roots, Wolfgang Gartner, Skrillex, Crystal Castles, Odesza, Dillon Francis, Snoop Dogg, members of Wu-Tang Clan, and so many more have performed there, making the festival more-or-less a right of passage. It’s a major feat to present such a diverse lineup year after year the way Camp Bisco has consistently been able to do.
The Biscuits deserve recognition for putting together and sustaining their own music festival. Fans frequently don’t recognize the degree of difficulty for any band or artist, regardless of genre, to put on an annual event of this scale while also touring nationally, especially during the early years of Camp. These guys curated the lineup for many years as the festival grew from its first year as a tiny independent festival with a few hundred in attendance to one of the biggest music festivals in North America, hosting over 20,000 attendees in recent years. Not a lot of bands out there that can say that at all.
[courtesy of Calder Wilson]
Now, the question begs to be asked: Who are the “up and coming” acts on this year’s Camp Bisco lineup who are poised to take their careers to the next level? Bands like Pigeons Playing Ping Pong, Turkuaz, and The Floozies are undeniably already on their way. But what about artist’s such as The Russ Liquid Test, Maddy O’Neal, Swift Technique, or a Jaw Gems? Those are just a couple of the younger acts that everyone should be on the lookout for this year at Camp Bisco. Guaranteed, those performers will also be seeing plenty of success as their careers move upwards and onwards in future years.