From mainstream to underground, recommended festivals in Thailand
Nomura: Is it festivals that can replace the places where live concerts can be held? I think so. Are festivals making a comeback in Thailand after the Corona Disaster?
Ginn: Compared to before the Corona disaster, there are fewer. There was a period in 2018-19 or so when festivals were rampant like bamboo shoots, but that is long gone. I have the impression that the festivals that were doing well survived. Also, BL dramas are very popular in Thailand, as they seem to be in Japan. More and more festivals are featuring actors from these popular dramas.
Nomura: That is a culture that we do not have in Japan!
Ginn: One festival started booking many idols and actors at one point in order to attract a new audience. That festival used to treat indie bands very well, even creating a stage that only featured indie bands that were not yet well-known, but they stopped creating that stage a few years ago. I felt a sense of disappointment that the chances for indie bands to see the light of day were disappearing. The audience has changed, and the atmosphere of the festival has changed a lot.
Nomura: On the contrary, what kind of festivals do you still enjoy Thai indie bands?
Ginn: One festival is the Maho Rasop Festival. It is an international music festival that mainly books artists from outside of Thailand, but Thai bands are also booked. I have the impression that the Thai indie bands booked for this festival are not so much popular or able to attract a large audience, but rather artists who have the ability to compete on the world stage. Last year, young and talented artists such as Alec Orachi, KIKI, and Dogwine, as well as legends such as Desktop Error and Death of a Salesman performed at the festival. This year, young, up-and-coming artists such as Soft Pine, Death of Heather, and FORD TRIO have been booked.
Ginn: Another festival is called “Post-Gazer”. This year is the sixth time it has been held, and it is a festival that brings together shoegaze, post-rock, hardcore, and experimental music, as well as other non-mainstream music. It is held in a provincial city about 2 to 3 hours drive from Bangkok. It is a festival where you can get to know all the underground artists in Thailand at once.