Highlights from Day two of the gathering (Good bangers for ya Buck-and):

0.00Freya;       0.46 – Featured Act – Extreme Bike Stunts by Borys Zagrocki;        1.45Grouch;       2.30 Boil Up;           4.10 – Chief Get Down;         4.50Juzzy Smith;           5.07 – Featured Talk – Landcare by Peter Stronach;        5.45Grouch in Dub;    6.30The Stragglers;         7.03Pixel;           7.58 – Featured Talk – Earthship Houses by Martin Freney;       9.30Terrafractyl;      10.30Tijuana Cartel;       13.02Spoonbill

Fractangular Gathering?

For many in the music scene, Fractangular or ‘Fraccas’, is a premier Tasmanian music event. The 3-day event had a relaxed atmosphere and intimate setting in an otherwise sleepy Buckland. From their website, Fractangular has the approach to “enrich Tasmania’s cultural content, increase awareness and importance of the arts & expression, health, wellbeing, environmental sustainability, family and community connectedness, while also being a locus for networking, collaboration, participation, experience and exposure.”  Photos from this year’s gathering are shown below.

Picking up where some former festivals have finished, such as the original Tasmanian Circus Festival in Golconda and the Jackeys Marsh Forest Festival, Fractangular offers a music and arts festival experience that is unique, but definitely inspired by Tasmania’s rich festival history and global festival culture in general, as Tasmanians and travellers continue to celebrate small festivals over the summer season.

Yes Frackin’ way!

For many, it is unlikely that they would ever go or even hear about it. However, the subculture is becoming ever more mainstream and popularised with the rise of the tech savvy YouTube Gen Y, and the tech-natives: Gen Z. Electronic music is becoming a staple in the contemporary music diet, and with the rise of social media and online music platforms as central music distribution points over the past two decades, electronic music has been taken to unbelievable heights in terms of production and consumption.

Fractangular has been an infrequent festival over the past decade, as hosts took time off during the past 3 years whilst child-raising was at peak demand. The gathering is part of the Hobart network of the electronic/trance music scene, with former venue, the Homestead, creating regular space for sustaining a continuous culture. Some locals are a bit amiss, now that the Homestead has been sold, and the Republic Bar changed owners in early January, but still content with iconic venues such as the Brisbane Hotel and the Grand Poobah to get their music fix. For now.

This year’s gathering was thus a relief for many, not only had it been a number of years since the last, but provided reassurance that the scene is still strong enough to host big events in Tasmania, providing a central point of convergence for those in the bush doof scene. The announcement in the week leading up to the event that is was sold out, became a testament to the demand for the event (and other similar events, such as November’s Techtonic Festival in Nugent) well into the future.

On the second day of the festival, the ‘well-known’ Grouch was a crowd pleaser during the afternoon, attracting many dancers and setting the stage for night two of the marathon dance party. After an hour plus of dancing, the hammock forest (adjacent the canopy stage) was much needed rest for weary legs. A break in the music each night, ensured that everyone had the energy to continue the next day, and still function like a human being in the days following.

Music but what else?

Apart from the ‘doof doof’, as most would probably refer to the music genre, there were also some alternative and indie musicians, infusing electronic, jazz, reggae, cultural sounds and various other styles into a beautiful blend of contemporary musical expression.

The music was balanced by the other aspects of the gathering, which included the Monster Side Show, workshops, discussions, an art trail, and various kinaesthetic activities such as trick bikes, circus equipment, the flying trapeze, aerial silk, craft activities, wild play spaces, and even a disco for the kids. Catering for families with young kids was clearly a priority for organisers of the event.

*Note: I had a go at the inverted handle bars bike, which turn the opposite way to the front wheel. I couldn’t do it, and neither could the person I watched fail at it before I thought it can’t be that hard. How wrong was I!

Featured Talks

Among the highlights included the feature talks about Landcare, where listeners heard about the dog that has been trained to sniff out and regurgitate masked owl pellets, to find owl hollows. Listeners also had the opportunity to experiment with tyre & earth building, following the presentation on Earthship houses. The presenter, Martin Freney, was the first person to successfully achieve Council approval in Australia for an Earthship dwelling.

Earthships have been built in various places in Australia, originating in Mexico, spreading to many other countries across the world as a form of sustainable and efficient architecture. For those without the space or resources to build an Earthship, Freney commented that greenhouses can be attached to the north facing side of existing structures to improve the energy efficiency of buildings.

As with many subculture gatherings, Fractangular brought together people from all over the state to share in the experience with the many young travelers who were visiting the region. Fractangular is just one example of the modern living corroboree of music, dance, creativity, and learning exchange that connects all the Fractangular ‘family’ from across Tasmania and beyond.

Were you at Fractangular? What else did you see, hear, experience?

Fractangular 2020 Photo Gallery