Jungle Love Festival – a summer festival, a little differently
It’s undeniable that Australia is undergoing a bit of a renaissance when it comes to boutique festivals. With the behemoths like SOUNDWAVE, BIG DAY OUT and STEREOSONIC no longer (for now), punters are searching elsewhere for festival good times, and a massive line-up with not much else to offer doesn’t cut it anymore. No, punters are after an experience; something they can be a part of, something that offers more for their buck, and most importantly, something different. And so, the rise of the boutique festival began.
Focussing on quality over quantity, boutique festivals have smaller crowds and smaller line-ups, but what they “lack” in headliners is made up in other ways. Whether it be fancy-dress competitions, yoga sessions, open mics, exceptional food and drink offerings, nicer campgrounds if it’s an extended stay or more, boutique festivals aren’t actually lacking in anything. They deliver an experience that is just not available at major festivals, and their appeal is so strong, each year they continue to outdo themselves with more and more attendees vying for a chance to get in on the good vibes.
One such festival is South-East Queensland’s JUNGLE LOVE. Borne out of a love of community and music, these two focusses have never changed, and the passion for this has never wavered over it’s four-year history. Starting off as a house party in co-founder RAYMOND WILLIAMS‘ basement, and morphing into the wonderland it is today, it’s been a labour of love for Williams and other co-founder, LINCOLN SAVAGE. Opting to focus on the experience rather than the headliners, each year the music line-up is programmed not for who’s big on triple J, but who will deliver a great performance, and with a strong leaning towards local talent as well from Brisbane and beyond (not to mention remaining BYO since its inception), Jungle Love remains a community first and foremost.
It’s a well-kept secret that gets out a little more each year, growing from a couple of hundred to a couple of thousand in just four years, and if you’ve been along, it’s no wonder at all why. If you haven’t been along, then you might need a little introduction. Well, look no further, as we’ve listed the five major reasons why Jungle Love is one of the best boutique festivals on offer around the country, and why it holds such a special place in punters’ hearts. Falling on the first weekend of December, more info about the festival can be found HERE. See you in the jungle!
Jungle Love continues to opt for a choose-your-own-adventure experience each year. By the end of the day, you and all your friends could’ve had very different days despite not being more than 500m from each other. From poetry slams to flash mobs, yoga, the chai tent with live music, live art, the creek (which we will touch on later), delectable food choices, a couple of bars and more, your days are filled to the brim with activities at Jungle Love. And that’s all without the multiple main stages which spring to life in the late morning and don’t stop rocking until well into the night. Offering more than just sitting in your campsite until the music starts mid afternoon, each day is a new and different adventure waiting to be discovered.
Each year, the music line-up is programmed not for who is the buzziest name around, but for who is going to deliver a stellar set. With no restraints on genres or styles, the diverse line-up is one that you can trust will have something to suit your tastes, whatever they may be. This year is no different, with the likes of NGAIIRE, KOI CHILD, SEX ON TOAST, WILLOW BEATS, PINK MATTER, MEZKO, KAIIT, HARTS and stacks more all set to take to the multiple stages across the festival. Jungle Love also doesn’t forget where it came from, and gives back to the local music scene of Brisbane and beyond, with an exceptional line-up of local bands also on the main line-up as well as the other stages. Whether you love electronic, soul, dance, jazz, rock or more, Jungle Love has got you covered!
Keep in mind this festival is in December, in Queensland, so to say it gets hot is a big understatement. With temperatures in the high 20s/even low 30s, sometimes a cold beer in the shade just doesn’t cut it. Thankfully, due to being held at Imbil Deer Park, there is a creek that runs the length of the festival site. It’s deep enough to have a good swim, it’s utterly picturesque with it’s lush, green banks and bushland on the far side, and it’s the perfect cure for a sweltering day. With just about everyone bringing their own version of a floatation device, the creek breathes life back into punters, dusting off the cobwebs from the partying before and making everyone fresh for the day ahead. How many other festivals have this just on hand?
THE KUNST KLUB
I’ve reserved this special section of the festival for its own dot point, and for good reason. You know how at camping festivals, the main stages close and there’s often not a lot on offer if you’re not quite ready for bed yet? Those nights where you’ve got at least an hour or two of dancing left in your legs before they give out completely, or you’re not done catching up with old friends? Or, more simply, if you just want to hear some disco, soul, funk, groove, house, techno or more after a few hours of bands? The Kunst Klub is the brainchild of NINA EVASON, and with her as the mastermind, it is a transformative space that might look like a shipping container on the outside but will have you feeling like you’re leaving the Sunshine Coast momentarily and transported into a dank Berlin club. This year, they’ve teamed up with some exceptional DJs and local crews LOLA and A LOVE SUPREME to really bring those late night party vibes. Each night will have it’s own separate theme, with one already announced as the Love Hotel: “A disco and house experience awaits… if you’re lucky enough to get past the cheeky concierge.” The other themes are yet to be announced, but trusting The Kunst Klub, it’ll be out of this world.
At the end of the day, it’s the community of Jungle Love that brings people back, year after year. The first year remains one of my favourite festival experiences ever, and every single event sees you leaving with a slew of new friends that live far and wide. It’s almost like a pilgrimage each year for the Jungle Love faithful; after another long year, they pack everything into the car and trek to the deep Sunshine Coast for a weekend of off-the-grid festivities, full of friends old and new, and more than a few surprises at every turn. With a strong volunteer force every year as well that keep the festival running just for the sheer love of it, as well as a “leave no trace” policy that has seen the crowds treat the site with love and respect, this is so much more than just a festival. It’s a family, and a community, and one of the best weekends you’ll experience.
The fourth annual Jungle Love festival will be held at Borumba Deer Park, Imbil, from 30 November to 2 December.
B. Chill & Thirsty Paul
Flyying Colours (Vic)
Monster Zoku Onsomb
Mood Swing & Chevy Bass
Nathan Sellin & Jaden Birch
Sean Bale (BLESS)
Golden Age Of Ballooning
Karl S Williams (Tas)
Koi Child (WA)
The Mouldy Lovers
One Dragon, Two Dragon
Sex On Toast (Vic)
Thee End Less
Weird Together (NZ)
Willow Beats (Vic)
Main Image by Nomakim Photography
Words by Emma Jones