Haven Festival Was Equal Parts Music, Food, Beer, and Joy

Throughout the summer, Haven Festival became increasingly popular and surrounded by a lot of hype in Copenhagen, Denmark. It was to be an atypical festival taking place over two days in the city and was meant to not only be a music festival but a beer festival and a food festival as well. There would be no camping and you were not allowed to bring your own food and drinks to the festival. These factors, as well as the expensive price-tag on the ticket, made the festival less accessible compared to some of Denmark’s other festivals like Roskilde or Northside. However, you still had the option of working/volunteering in exchange for a free ticket. The beer and food experiences were indeed high-quality albeit with a high price-tag to match.  You could have brews of the classic, dark, or sour variety. You could have a delicious cocktail or share a bottle of wine—served in glasses, no less! You could eat everything from sausages to arepas to funnel-cake served on edible plates.

Since this was the inaugural year of the festival, it is no surprise that there was a snafu or two. The lines for everything were incredibly long. The fact that virtually none of the music acts were playing at the same time meant you wouldn’t miss your favorite artist but also that every festival-goer was going back-and-forth between the stages at the same time to catch the same concerts.

There were some sound issues during the first concerts, however, that didn’t keep Band of Horses from appearing to be the happiest they could possibly be by being there—a happiness that was inevitably contagious and didn’t go unnoticed by the crowd.

Iggy Pop’s energy reached every corner of the festival and even if you weren’t watching it, you could feel and experience it.

On Saturday, Feist gave a charming concert personalizing her songs and comments to the audience and the Danish setting. To no one’s surprise, Bon Iver made the most of the live-forum giving unique renditions of his latest tracks.

By far, the best aspect of the festival was the location on Refshaleøen. It is not too far from the city so one could easily escape to the comfort of their home and dry clothes once they felt it was too cold or too rainy. Moreover, the site was surrounded by harbor on all sides creating a beautiful backdrop to the festivities.

Haven Festival certainly lived up to its claim of being an atypical festival and being a festival that placed equal emphasis on music, food, and beer. A bit more emphasis could have been placed on all three and there is definitely room for improvement in the practical aspects of the festival. Catering to the indie crowd and bourgeoisie alike, anyone could find something to like here.