Het Twiske, Amsterdam

In the days leading up to this year’s Lente Kabinet, there seemed to be an unprecedented number of people pleading for tickets online. This was partly thanks to an encouraging weather forecast, but also due to glowing reports of the Dekmantel-curated event from previous years. Dekmantel have always seemed keen to keep Lente Kabinet annexed from the hype surrounding their larger events, but this year the beans got spilled.

Interestingly, this year’s line-up seemed relatively lowkey compared to previous years. The Black Madonna and recent Crack cover star Helena Hauff were perhaps the biggest hitters, with the former delivering an energetic but somewhat predictable closer on the main stage and the latter providing a more thrilling experience over at Red Light Radio’s little corrugated shelter. The smallest of the four stages, Red Light Radio offered a bunch of notable moments, including a rambunctious performance from the inimitable David Vunk, Silver Apples performing live on homemade synthesisers and a sprawling mix from NTS regular Elena Colombi.

The other small stage curated by DJ Broadcast also offered some key moments, as well as some welcome shade in the thirty degree heat. Chicago legend Sadar Bahar’s joyous soul set and Antal’s more driving house and disco a couple of hours later were both huge highlights.

One aspect of Lente Kabinet which remained a secret to many was the church stage. Set at the back of the festival and not listed on the programme, it played host to Young Marco and Casper Tielrooij (one half of Dekmantel Soundsystem) among others. It could have been easy to miss this stage altogether, but maybe that’s the point. This year Lente Kabinet went from best kept secret to established landmark; the starting line to Amsterdam’s summer festival run. Thankfully its organisers seem determined to maintain what makes it special.