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Everyone Loves Ottawa: E.L.E. Festival Review

Photos by Yaneka McFarland

An extremely underrated festival beating furiously right in the center of Ottawa’s core. Everyone ELE held a roaster of continuous local music, promoting some of the cities finest acts. To sum up the experience in one word; impressive.

Shockingly, the local gigs during the day were just as talented as the featured artists brought on. The festival held such names as Nick Murphy (publicly known as Chet Faker), 6lack, and Jax Jones.

2017 marked the 3rd year ELE was organized by the University of Ottawa student union as a means to publicize and celebrate local performers in Ottawa. Despite being incredibly accessible and repping a ridiculous lineup, it seems that local artists have lately not been getting the love that they should have been.

In the most severe September heat wave to hit Ottawa myself and my photographer braved the sun’s sting to soak up ELE’s lineup. Comfortably tucked away on the University of Ottawa’s campus there was a hilarious contrast of students strolling from class and concert goers parading the streets, to say the event was entertaining would be an understatement.

Photos by Yaneka McFarland

Day 1 disappointed, but only so far as the crowd was concerned. There were not nearly the number of attendees as was rightly deserved. KHAØS was incredible, easily rated the best show of the entire weekend. Ottawa DJ, Ruslana Malytska had incredible stage presence despite a lonely crowd of possibly 30 people.

Day 2 brought was by far the best for those seeking a visual experience, with huge screens lining each side of the stage gleamed with bright forests, donuts, and creatures of all sorts. Some of the coolest stuff was coming from Catalyst and Forever Friday.

It was incredible how many of the performers were also crazy talented despite how young they were. On Saturday, artist Zach Diamond sat down to talk with me. He had so much personality packed into his set, beaming with raw lyrics and an abundance of skill I left so inspired and excited to see what he does next.

It’s worth mentioning again how insanely hot the entire weekend was, feeling like 40 degrees in direct sunlight so the shade that was supplied by the dome surrounding the stage was really appreciated. I’m not sure if that was planned in accordance to any changes in weather but it was a really useful space for people attending any of the shows during the day.

Photos by Yaneka McFarland

After a complex infusion of electronic, hip hop, and R&B, Day 3 brought in some jazzier tones with the likes of headliner Nick Murphy. The daytime shows complimented the evening nicely featuring Probably Raymond and The Free.

The place was packed Saturday and Sunday nights, people supporting their friends and others just excited for the closing acts. Either way it was an amazing weekend that brought people together for a greater cause, the music.

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