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Splash into the Deep end of House: Festival Review

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It was 108 degrees and the sets were sizzling for the first weekend of Splash House 2015. The two day festival consists of three different venues; each with its own personality, pool, and stage boasting the best of up-and-coming electronic dance music.

Splash House is the combination of all you summer plans: it’s a desert road trip, a day club, and a music festival all in one. Any initial pool phobias or anxieties about whether or not you’re summer body ready are quickly bleached by the day time heat. And any animosities towards the sun are washed out by the pool waves.

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Splash House seamlessly created an atmosphere that interweaved its venues, the music and its festival-goers into an interactive extravaganza. The decorations evoke “Summer-time Madness” with plethora floaties from half eaten donuts to Hawaiian llamas brought by attendees. The guests were also allowed to decorate their hotel balconies in hopes to be deemed the most Bitchin’ Balcony of the weekend; a title with perks of four free tickets for next year.

Guests this summer were invited to activities like morning yoga before their first dip in the pool, Disco Bingo during the day, and for whose didn’t want Splash House to end there was an after-hours after-party each evening. To quote a San Diego County native Lil Rob “ain’t nothing like them summer nights.”

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This year the event took place at The Hilton Palm Springs, the Hacienda Cantina & Beach Club, and the Saguaro; each equipped with a watering hole. The three venues were connected with a number of party buses making it easy to move from one stage to another.

The Hacienda was the calmest of the three, a good place to start and ease your way into the festivities. With green grass and misters you could dance ‘til your heart’s content.

The colorful Saguaro undisputedly was the epitome of the Splash House experience. This last weekend there were more bodies than water in the Saguaro pool, but the venue itself held just the right amount of crazy.

The Hilton Palm Springs was the location to end each night. When the sun finally set, the Hilton held the biggest and best DJ sets of the weekend, definitely the main stage if you had to name one. At the Hilton headliners such as RAC and Cashmere Cat would close out Splash House with feel-good vibrations.

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RAC, Remix Artist Collective is currently comprised of one, Andre Allen Anjos. RAC performed at Coachella earlier this year and has collaborated with YACHT, a veteran KSDT performer. Known for alternative dance, RAC performed a ‘DJ set’ Saturday. The Splash House stages gave the audience and DJs the ability to lock eyes and connect on a more intimate level. RAC’s unique sound flowed off the table onto the dance floor making his crowd the largest of the weekend. Ending the night with his single Let Go attendees were left with an up-tempo farewell to day one of Splash House.

Cashmere Cat also performed at Coachella earlier this year and performed at Mad Decent San Diego in 2014. This long haired cat was the final set of last weekend’s Splash House. The combination of house and hip-hop left for a sultry set filled with a number of his most popular remixes. Hydrating with a pint of beer mid-mixing, Cashmere Cat seemed rather laid back at a lower bpm (beats per minute), and the crowd was right there with him.

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During the daylight hours of Splash House there were so many artists to watch out for. Shift K3Y is a 22 year old London raised and acclaimed artist leaving his mark here in the U.S. He recently performed at San Diego’s Bang Bang and will be releasing a track under Dim Mak later this month. His set at Splash House was a hot blend of house and R&B – garage, bringing soul back onto the dance floor even in 108 degree heat. Thomas Jack performed at the Saguaro day two spinning his signature tropical house; a perfect fit for a summer pool party. The 22 year old will be in San Diego this September performing at the Mad Decent Block Party.

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Overall, Splash House was a gorgeous time filled with gorgeous people. It’s definitely a great pool party with a killer soundtrack, but because of the heat, the pools and the hotels were unquestionably the stars of last weekend’s Splash House. It was a unique experience, unlike any festival I’ve attended. Even with the 3,000+ festival-goer, the event felt intimate allowing you to connect with others who also made the plunge into Splash House 2015.

First -time hearing about Splash House? Don’t fret; this massive pool party/music festival is still young; starting in 2013 this baby is only coming into its third year.   With renowned artists such as Flume, Cashmere Cat, and Chromeo gracing the line-ups, this little oasis in the desert is quickly growing and is making a big name for itself. Splash House isn’t just making a splash in the EDM world it is creating waves in the music festival scene.

Interested in going? Don’t miss out. Tickets for Splash House August 2015 are still available online here.

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Photos & Review / Susan Bystrom

6/19/2015