To begin, 12000 attendees weren't the only highlight of such a great event!
When you hear the word MOGA, at the outset, two things come to your mind: Essaouira’s trancelike atmosphere and a very famous happening with the same denomination that has been there since 2016.
And so, you can imagine the two days off, with bewitching venues as the old Skala and no less mesmerizing voices as Lala Tamar’s. The MOGA OFF program was so versatile. Sound healing sessions, concerts all over the city’s hotspots with wonderful decors, Surfing sessions, and horse riding. It was indeed the full Essaouira experience, but don’t let the mixed bag fool you, it was just a spoiler to the upcoming ultimate experience.
First day: "What the hell! is that another stage ?"
As with every previous event I’ve been to, I first analyze the venue as it’s the first dopamine stimulant in Electronic Music events. This time, it was different. I mean you can’t be unsatisfied with all that grass 😉.
After you cross the luxurious hall, you find yourself facing a huge number of ravers scattered all over the pool and the main stage.
So, you think that other stages would be empty. But, it’s a 12000 heads event, where every stage has its vibrations.
If you’re into the hard stuff like Techno, Detroit, and DnB garden stage is the place to burn some calories. If you’re into shaking your waist, and slightly jiggling your brain on some Void Soundsystem precise mids, the wild stage was delivering that groovy stuff. Softies (me) weren’t left over, they had this Zarabi-themed stage called Terrace Stage, serving multiple subgenres varying from Deep House to Psytrance. Yes, Astrix is not that healthy when it’s only 8 PM, but if I’m traveling all the way to Essaouira to be in Moga, I’d love some indoor travel.
That's the real UX, five stages simultaneously, choose your warrior!
For a fine nuance, as much mainstream as the fest was labeled and expected to be, as hard as it said NO to all expectations.
Therefore, minus the heavy presence of law reinforcements that we appreciate so much, and thanks to the vast musical choice and the diversity of melodies, Moga was musically the most underground event I went to.
This is the point of this first part of the journey, you get to discover what it is like, so you can have insights about how hard you would unleash your raver mode in the upcoming days!
Second day: "I've lived my dream, but differently"
Imagine, you wanted to see Acid Arab performing for the last 6 years of your life. Eventually, you get the chance to do so, and just 160km away from where you live. But you miss nearly half of the show for something you were joking about the week before.
Wait ! let me put you in the picture:
“look at this cool concept, an underground rave with headphones on, no Soundsystem, no bass, no ear damage, straight-up vibes”
Just think of the feeling of perceiving the same reverberations on headsets, synchronically with more than 100 individuals in a plastic greenhouse. It was transparent, consequently, everyone on the outside wanted a piece of that!
On the other side, which was only 60 meters away, the stage was inflamed from the oriental tunes curated by Acid Arab who were evidently one of the most highlighted characters in MOGA, due to what I said earlier_Diversity.
The French-Portuguese duo had all the fun they wanted by finding the perfect crowd, their music was either Oriental(Arab, Persian, Hebrew…) or Amazigh(Berber) based, so they touched a frail string.
I mean if you see it from a wider angle, their music was intriguing because of who we are, our background, our daily basis memories, and interactions, the sounds we hear in places like Jamaa Lafnaa, the music our ears catch when riding a taxi… Speaking of taxis, after playing all the bangers, Acid Arab decided to perform a WAY WAY track, but I haven’t seen anyone complaining about it.
Cheers to whoever appreciates our beautiful culture, especially if their appreciation can make us dance! It was truly LA HAFLA !
If you think the fun stops here, you should’ve seen the main stage. It was the first time I saw Lee Burridge playing at night, yet the clouds were so visible with the feel-good vibrations he was serving through the huge Funktion-One set.
Hence, he left us all dreaming, making it easier for the phenomenal Jan Blomqvist to hold our hands and fly us away with his soul-touching performance. I literally saw people crying from pure joy, that’s something you don’t get to see every day…Yet, it wasn’t odd, with all that level of musical excellence and all the subtlety of controlling the audience. Blomqvist had a 15 minutes conversation with the crowd on his set’s opening sounds. And so, the music ascended simultaneously with the wholesomeness flowing from both the artist and the audience. This was the day I realized that crowd control was never about BPM.
Third day: "the full underground experience"
If we take days as a scale of criticism, this is by far my favorite day. As with all things in life, expectations aren’t often a good basis, and this is one of the reasons this day was special.
I barely knew 5 artists but the musical experience I got as a comeback was freaking mind-blowing. It came as the best to what the two previous days started in my mind.
And as the French say: “faut rendre à César ce qu’a César”. Moga deserves the credit! Mainly for introducing new dimensions to the Moroccan scene inviting a huge pile of underground national & international artists. Not only to give us a great audible trip but also to give them the space to prove themselves. And I believe that’s what enhanced the musical experience.
When artists have a lot more to prove, they excel. It’s a simple yet sad equation, a lot of artists lose their signature after proving themselves in the matrix. Back to the good energy, a heavy presence of female DJs was visible. It’s always a heartwarming thing to see. With unbelievable performances such as Sonja Moonjear’s, Alyssa and Gia’s, and slim peace & Blossom Doudou’s. This journey was closed by a beautiful deep house set by Daox, the landlord himself. It was a personal delight for me to be honest, I wanted to see what the guy has to offer since the first time I listened to his Kasbah Bab Ourika set. And the return on experience was not disappointing. I take the chance to thank him for the set and the setting.
For that, Morocco is gonna truly be the next Mecca of Electronic Music pilgrims. Until then, I’m here to honor the cause. I hope my articles served a little in that exposure. Let’s make the culture our balcony cactus, give it the soil it needs, and just let it grow.
No pressure! we’re on the right path.
We appreciate their presence, but better keep them out of the crowd. Keep them nearby but not inside.
So what do you think of the event?