Philadelphia’s Premier Extra-Sensory Experience Takes Over the Ukie Club with 23 Artists on Three Stages
Do you feel that? It’s your psyche senses tingling: SENSORiUM Music & Arts Festival brings the hottest, headiest end-of-summer party back to Philadelphia on Saturday, August 25 from noon to 10 p.m. with official after-shows raging on until 2 a.m. SENSORiUM expands its digs from last year’s inaugural lift-off at One Art Community Center to the historic 3,000 capacity Ukrainian American Citizens’ Association (aka the Ukie Club) in Northern Liberties for the three-stage, 23 artist talent lineup.
Featured artists include Colorado three-piece Susquabi, New Jersey indie-hip hop sample artist Flamingosis, Los Angeles producer Daedelus, and locals Wax Future, Minka, and Agent Zero, just coming off a run at Camp Bisco last month. But at the top of the bill is Tweed — the Delaware-formed, Philadelphia-bred funktronica quartet consisting of AJ DiBiase (guitar, vocals), Dan McDonald (bass, vocals), Jon Tomczak (keyboard, vocals), and Joe Vela (drums, samples) — SENSORiUM festival founders, hosts and professional party architects on a year-round sensory schedule.
The City of Brotherly Love and Sisterly Affection(s) has been cooking up much more than cheesesteaks, though there will be sure to be plenty of those to be seen at the festival. In addition to the local food, drink and craft vendors and sensational visual and interactive art lineup, Tweed drummer Vela (also appearing under his producer moniker Bad Leather) has a more few things he’d like you to know about the ticket that comes with this ride.
The lineup is stacked. “I’m probably most excited for Flamingosis (a New Jersey native), who makes sample-based soulful hip-hop. He is a scene-transcending musician, one that pulls from indie hip-hop, funk, and electronic crowds. A lot of my close friends are into him right now, and his last Philly show was over a year ago at Johnny Brenda’s. Our headliner SunSquabi from Colorado is going to be killer, as will my local favorites Wax Future and MINKA.”
The location is prime. Why the switch? “Location, location, location. We wanted to be closer to the action of Philadelphia, and closer to our crowd in Northern Liberties and Fishtown. The Ukie Club building has a rich history, the oldest The Ukrainian Club in the country, and it’s believed that it was an integral part of the Philadelphia underground railroad system. Plus, it adds about three times the capacity of One Art, giving us the ability to do three stages: two outdoor, and one indoor.”
It’s a feast for the senses. “Similar to last year, SENSORiUM will have a continuous flow of music all day. The two outdoor stages will bounce back and forth, and our indoor DJ stage will have a flow of music then change over into a bass-conscious late night after party with Zebbler Encanti Experience, Esseks, Chee, and Moniker. We have 20 featured artists who will be live-creating and painting all day, a ton of unique local craft and food vendors, and interactive art installations which include four extra-sensory themed lounges: Jungle, Wild West, Underwater, and Outerspace.”
It is considerate of the planet. Where the definition of the word sensorium includes “where experience and environment combine,” the eponymous music festival puts some much needed emphasis on the environment part, which is ravaged by waste from music festivals every year. “Our mission has always been to leave a positive impact on the community, which includes environmental impact. We have amazing staff and volunteers to help with recycling and clean-up, along with a culture of sustainability. The music scene is one that should be environmentally conscious, and we hope to contribute to that in any way possible.” Last year, the festival reported striving to be “low footprint, leave no trace,” using empty glass bottle waste to build walls in the original venue, One Art.
The ride is worth the ticket. “If you’re looking for a music festival that is wildly different from your typical camping festival, this is the one. In addition to the insane lineup of talent, we have the craziest interactive art installations, tons of activities and games, and out-of-this-world activations, like the lounges. Plus, the stacked bill of local artists and the fact that we’re right in the middle of one of the hippest cities in the world make this a unique event not to miss. If you don’t know every musical act on the bill, you should! I highly recommend you get to the festival right when the music starts at noon on August 25 for all of the ear candy.”
SENSORiUM Music & Arts Festival takes place Saturday, August 25 — noon to 10 p.m. The event is held at The Ukie Club on Franklin, 847 North Franklin Street, Philadelphia, Pa. 19123. Tickets are on sale now at a pre-sale price and available at face value day of show.