BY Abigail Standish

This is the 3rd year that Vivid, Fuzzy, Motorik, Carriageworks, and a handful of EDM artists have teamed up to create a spectacularly stimulating festival of lights and sounds. If you find yourself headed to Curve Ball next year, be prepared to have your ears and eyes thoroughly vivified. 

I showed up to Carriageworks in a pretty sleepy mood, but a few minutes of absorbing the atmosphere woke me up and got me ready groove. After accepting a sip of Smirnoff from a gaggle of charitable and scantily-clad festival-goers just outside the venue, getting a good sniff from the drug dogs, and having my ticket checked, I found myself through a crowd of gyration, right to the base of the main stage where Haiku Hands were owning the stage with their synchronised choreography and vocals layered atop punchy electronic dance beats. This was the perfect set for a bit of dancing and singing along to their contagiously simple and repetitive lyrics.

When Haiku Hands’ set came to a close, I followed a heavy avalanche of “UNTZ UNTZ UNTZ” until I came to a smaller, darker room. The air here was hazy with cigarette smoke, saturated with a light of deep blue, and airwaves of heavy bass. Neon Ivy was up on the stage, chunky headphones on, mildly head banging to the beat, and fully absorbed by her art. The night was young and the crowd was energetically moving about- some with a beer in one hand, some with a beer in each hand, some with with hands up in the style of a church-goer listening to gospel music. The musicians on this stage changed a few times throughout the night- I saw Francis Xavier, Motorik Vibe Council, and McLean & Mai all gave performances here. I found each of them quite similar- lots of hazy lights, lyric-less beat build ups and bass drops. The room was conducive to just chilling and taking it all in or breaking out some dance moves. At the end of the night, I lingered around the back of this room and took note of the various styles of dance on the floor. There was plenty of mild head bouncing, and some jumping and fist pumping.

Besides the standard dance moves, there were some which truly were sights to behold. There was the lady with her legs a full metre and a half apart, swivelling her hips ALL the way around in an ellipse. There was the fellow who, though standing fully upright- had accomplished a sort of slow motion vertical crawl. Think of a daddy long leg spider crawling along with only four legs, now rotate him 90 degrees. Oh, and he was opening and closing his fists so as to make a sort of lightless blinker effect. 

I also noticed an employee sweeping beer cans off of the floor- to the beat of the music. One sweep per “UNTZ”. There were the cowboy-hatted individuals who decided to challenge the rave music by having a full on conversation in the middle of the dance floor, some awkward token arm dancing like I’d never seen before, and… I could go on listing dance moves but I’ve got so much more to cover.

By far, my favourite set was Vera Blue’s. I found myself inspired by her powerful princess-ey vibes. Also, this was not a bad set to have a bit of a make-out sesh to. Lights were low and music was fairly soft. She closed her set with her absolute banger, “Lady Powers” (I do not use the word “banger” lightly. When I say it, I mean it.) Girl power was in the air.

My favourite part of E^ST’s set was when she preambled a celestially melodic song with “This is a song about giving a gobby.” During her performance, I got pulled into a group hug of about 15 people which, I think, does a good job of illustrating the all around friendship-y vibes of the whole event. I don’t know if it was the booze coursing through my fellow ravers or just the kindness of the particular group of people attracted to Curve Ball. I will say that despite starting my night with a token sip of Smirnoff, I was not at all intoxicated and still managed to make HEAPS of new friends. Everyone I met was incredibly fashionable (just look at the pics). 

My favourite fashion statement was a spoken one: my new mustachioed friend, Kaylum (who wore a kimono, a mass of eyeliner, and was heavily accessorised by fingerless gloves, work boots, hoop earrings, a scarf, a hat, and sunglasses) told me: “under these cargo pants, I’m wearing unicorn print leggings.”

So, if you’re into friendship, fashion, and having your eyeballs and ears filled to the brim with sensation, hit up Curve Ball 2019 and have all of your dreams come true!

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