Around 15 minutes outside the centre of Turin lies a former industrial area called Parco Dora. It's a sector of the city that's steeped in history—the industrial nature of the neighbourhood has left an indelible mark. Since the local industries, including a production plant belonging to Fiat, were abandoned, the local environment has been greatly improved and it's now one of the greenest areas of Turin. However, several huge structures remain and have been incorporated into the area's regeneration, one of the most striking being the skeletons of the Vitali sheds, two gargantuan structures that once housed furnaces for the casting of steel, which were later used to manufacture Fiat cars. The imposing structures lie empty for most of the year, but in mid-July they become home to one enormous party: Kappa Futurfestival.
Run by the team behind Movement Turin, the Kappa Futurfestival debuted in December 2010, but 2012 was when it really came into its own, with Carl Cox, Acid Pauli, Agoria, Fatboy Slim, Deadmau5 and a host of local artists helping to reanimate the dormant Vitali shed. 2013's edition saw the return of several artists from last year, including Carl Cox, Mathew Jonson (who joined his brother Nathan, AKA Hrdvsion, to form Midnight Operator) and Dyed Soundorom (who brought along his Apollonia cohorts Dan Ghenacia and Shonky). Also present were local heroes Marco Carola and Joseph Capriati, plus Luciano, Kerri Chandler and Richie Hawtin.
Arriving at Parco Dora on the first day of the event, the sun beat down on the grassy verge next to the main arena, and food stalls kept punters topped up on an array of soft drinks and Italian fast food. The main arena was breathtaking—its huge metal pillars and generally industrial environment made for a very special experience. A walk around the venue revealed the professionalism of the organisation, and also how sociable the Italian crowd can be. Everywhere you looked there were friendly faces, people dancing with one another and enough space to feel comfortable.
Carl Cox was in full flight on the main stage when we arrived, extracting roar after roar from the crowd, which swelled considerably during his set. Meanwhile, Kerri Chandler played for a smaller dance floor nearby. He worked up the crowd with a selection of typically bouncy house cuts, and when Apollonia arrived to take over, he dropped in one of their new tracks, "Trinidad," which brought smiles all around from the French crew. The trio took the reigns while Chandler mingled with the crowd, and did a superb job of keeping his momentum until rain made the sound system cut out for a while.
While engineers dealt with the issue, the main stage took off with Luciano and then Midnight Operator. The Jonson brothers unleashed some tough productions, triggering their tracks live and finishing up with some of Mathew's classics, including "Decompression." Nicole Moudaber followed with a mostly bone-crushing techno. Joseph Capriati continued in a similar vein—the atmosphere was electric throughout the night, and the energy from the crowd and the DJ sets were equally relentless. Damian Lazarus closed the second stage after Apollonia restarted and turned out one of the best sets of the day. By the time Kappa's first day had come to a close, both stages were full to the brim, having attracted around 8,000 people.
A midnight finish made an after-party inevitable, and Silverado was our destination. Tucked away next to a motorway in the middle of the forest, the club ended up being the weekend's highlight. Kerri Chandler was at the controls when we arrived, and for the next four hours he crafted the kind of set that makes you realise just how great house music can be. Threading together new and old tracks seamlessly, it was a masterclass in DJing, and Chandler kept the entire club gripped for the duration of his set, from Jordan Peak's "It's Time" through to Loni Clark "Rushin'," Andre Lodemann's "Where Are You Now?" and many other choice cuts.
For the second day, the festival again placed its emphasis on big room techno: Marco Carola, Ellen Allien, Matador and Richie Hawtin all supplied hefty basslines and huge drops at every turn. Allien's set was the most memorable, starting off reasonably slow and considered—a slight risk when you consider how hungry the crowd was, but it worked. Her headlining slot at the afterparty made it an essential stop off once the festival had come to an end. By the end of play, over 20,000 people had passed through the festival site and the team behind it had pulled off another successful large-scale event.