EDM festival returns to Stratton Mountain

Manchester native joins big names like Bassnectar and Griz

STRATTON — Pierce Fulton has altered his style of music since the last time he took the base lodge stage at Stratton Mountain Resort.

Fulton and more than 20 other electronic dance music (EDM) performers will return to the mountain on April 7 and 8 for the second Minus Zero Festival. World renowned artists such as Zeds Dead, Bassnectar, Illenium, and Griz will light up the main stage and rattle the slopes with bass.

Last year, Fulton deejayed during the festival for his high school and college friends and family. He graduated from Burr and Burton Academy in 2010 and even took snowboarding lessons at the mountain when he was 8 years old.

Before, most of his masterpieces were sculpted on a computer, incorporated with live elements and instrumentation. Since then, he's been exploring a new style for creating EDM music.

"This new EP (extended play, more tracks than a single) brought me into more live instrumentation and I started singing," Fulton said. "That EP was development of this sound that involves a lot more live instruments. It's a little more personal and less intense than electronic music. It still has the danceability that my old music had. It's just a bigger step in the new direction instead of abandoning my old style."

"A lot has changed in the past year that's exciting and a little scary," he added.

Fulton said he punctured his lungs in an accident while in Canada in May of 2016, while he was rope swinging into a lake. He said he hopes to be able to snowboard this year at the festival.

For the first three months Fulton couldn't do anything outside of his bed. He said he's still not fully recovered due to scar tissue and nerve damage, but he looks forward to being back home.

"It's crazy because I live in walking distance from the base lodge and it still blows my mind that these shows are going on," he said. "It's a reason to go home. For a while it was hard to find time between tours to go home — this has been a nice annual thing so far."

While Fulton looks forward to returning home, Ilenium, or Nick Miller, said he's excited to perform in Vermont for the first time.

Miller is originally from San Francisco, but now resides in Denver. His musical arrangements vary in style and building emotional experiences through music is his specialty.

Bassnectar, Porter and Odesza are among Miller's' greatest musical influences.

"When creating music I really try to take the listener on an emotional journey, to connect with them on that level," Miller said. "I think the best way to get that connection is for the music to be honest. For the emotion behind a song to be something I actually felt when making it. If you're true to your music that honesty comes through and people pick up on that. They're attracted to it because it's real."

His approach differs from a traditional EDM producer — stirring melodies that tell a story. Miller's remix of The Chainsmokers' "Don't Let Me Down" gained upwards of 160 million plays of YouTube and 63 million on SoundCloud, according to an interview with Dancing Astronaut in January.

"At the end of the day I'm just making music that I think is dope," he said. "I'm not trying to sound like or be like anyone else. Every person on the planet is unique and if you're making music for yourself it's going to sound unique just because of that. As far as inspiration and motivation? Definitely the people I'm surrounded with. Life. Having bad days and good days. It's amazing how much inspiration can come from just being present in the moment."

Other musicians that will join Fulton and Illenium include Marvel Years, DJ Shift, Dudenguy, Lestats, Bamboora, Voltran, Nekro b2b Exssv, Yookie, Brightside, Sam Allan, Adam Scott and many more.

Two-day general admission passes cost $139, not including extra fees.

Friday general admission tickets cost $69, not including extra fees, and Saturday general admission tickets cost $99, not including extra fees. Ski lift tickets must be added on separately.

For more information visit minuszerofestival.com.

Reach staff writer Makayla-Courtney McGeeney at 802-490-6471 or @MC_McGeeney.


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