It’s a scene-building exercise for a brand which knows something about risk-taking and evolution. Founded by Danny Rogers and Jerome Borazio, and co-promoted with Chugg Entertainment, St Jerome’s Laneway Festival has grown into a seven-city roadshow with dates on both sides of the Tasman and a route to Asia through a Singapore leg. And in a first for an Australian festival brand, Laneway expanded into the U.S. in 2013 with show at the Meadow Brook Music Festival in suburban Detroit (the U.S. event however, has yet to return for a second outing).
LNWY.CO was finally presented to the Australian media today and should get a good push on Laneway’s social channels, certainly in the early phases as the site gains traction.
The “reverse-Pitchfork” model is unique to Australia, and perhaps anywhere. “I can’t think of any other festival in the world which has started with something on this scale,” Levin explains. “Other festival websites run news and content on their socials, but this is a living, breathing content platform.”
The banner-free site boasts an international team of contributors (all of them paid) who focus on longform, video and stories not in the news cycle with an attention to Australasia and Asia. At launch, the site features pieces on Father John Misty and a playlist curated by ODESZA (both performers at next year’s Laneway Festival), a career retrospective on Odd Future and a tale on Singapore’s underground music scene. The spotlight will soon fall on the music scene in Jakarta, Indonesia.
“There’s a commercial side as well, creating opportunities for the sponsors who are working with the festival or want to talk to the Laneway audience year-round,” adds Levin. “That’s a big aspect of the funding model.”
The 2018 Laneway fest will kick off Jan. 27 in Singapore with a bill featuring The War on Drugs, Mac DeMarco, Anderson .Paak & The Free Nationals and more.