Five Things We Learnt While Attending Witness//01


Astral People’s new party Witness//01 made its debut at the Factory Theatre in Sydney on Sunday with a killer line up of our nation’s best up and coming electronic acts, as well as a headline set from Swamp 81’s PALEMAN.

The sun was (mostly) shining, the sound was crystal clear and the atmosphere was thriving and after a quiet start, the day ended up being as memorable as we all hoped.

Here are Five Things We Learnt While Attending Witness//01:

1. There are some excellent young DJs and producers coming out of Melbourne.

Melbourne’s ANDRAS FOX, ROLAND TINGS and OSCAR KEY SUNG all have ‘fresh’ sounding productions and seem to be creating an exciting and interesting scene in the industry. On the day, ANDRAS FOX played some quality house and disco records in the courtyard, while ROLAND TINGS almost blew the roof off the Factory Floor with his acid house infused live set. The strobe lights, which appeared to be installed purely for his performance, were world class.

2. You don’t need a massive line up of artists to put on a successful party.

Witness//01’s bill didn’t include any huge names but still managed to pull a decent sized crowd. I think a lot of this has to do with the following reasons:

a) People trust the Astral People brand. There have been countless occasions where I’ve turned up to their events, knowing very little about the artists playing. In my opinion they host some of the best parties in Sydney and really encourage people to be open-minded when it comes to music.

b) The courtyard was a huge hit at OutsideIn Festival and people understandably wanted to relive the experience.

c) Half of the artists on the line up don’t play in Sydney often so it felt like we were all in for something different.

3. A complimentary drink on arrival is the perfect start to a festival.

The people arriving at the venue before 4pm were offered a free Bulleit bourbon. I can’t remember the last time this happened at an event of this kind. It was certainly a great incentive to make it down early. People always dread drink prices at festivals but when you’re given a freebie upon arrival, it makes the situation so much better. Cheers Astral!

 4. Some people like reading books at parties.

Yes, this happened. It wasn’t just one person either. I saw multiple people walking to the bar with a book in their hand and at times, even reading it on the ground near the main stage. I’m actually really intrigued to find out what books they had now.

5. The courtyard at the Factory Theatre is one of the best and most underused outdoor venues in Sydney. In relation to indoor spaces, the Factory Floor is also a nice party destination!

No matter where you are situated, you are easily able to see the artists. You can also buy a drink without leaving the atmosphere, as the bar is literally right next to the stage. It’s good to see this space is finally being utilised. As for the Factory Floor, it’s a dark, intimate venue which was certainly well suited to the live acts who performed on the day such as BLACK VANILLA and RETIREE. To top it off there was Young Henrys available on tap. Score!

Yesterday it was proven that if you get the fundamentals right in terms of good music, sound and vibe, there is nothing really stopping you from hosting a great event. I’m already looking forward to returning to the Factory Theatre in four months time for Witness//02!

Words and photo by Tony Kingston.




During the week Tony works in a busy retail corporate office. Once day becomes night, there’s a good chance you’ll see him at a gig or DJing at a house party.