Montreal is one of world's most charming cities—so it make sense that its electronic-music festivals are pretty damn loveable as well. And the gathering known as AIM ("Art-Innovation-Movement"), which made its entry onto the world stage on Friday, June 26 and ran non-stop through the following Sunday, was certainly full of allure. It wasn't the most packed festival we've ever had the pleasure of attending; if you spied a friend on the opposite side of the front-of-stage area, you could easily saunter over to say hi without getting drenched in beer or suffering multiple elbow jabs to the solar plexus (try that the next time you're partying down at a main stage). But for many, that was part of AIM's appeal—not even a steady rain that dominated Sundays sets seemed to dampen anyone's spirits.
Held about an hour's drive outside of town at Parc Carillon, with many revelers camping for the duration, the party featured two full stages and, beyond them, a very cool, lushly appointed chill-out area featuring tunes of a more horizontal nature. But the thump-thump-thump of house and techno beckoned, and with the likes of Four Tet, Kevin Saunderson, Tiga, Martin Buttrich, and the Martinez Brothers on the bill—not to mention local all-stars like Iron Galaxy, Mightykat, Nymra & Sofisticated, and Alicia Hush—there was plenty to be had. XLR8R only had the chance stay a few hours on Saturday—but they were well-chosen hours, with house hero Kerri Chandler and the boogie boys of Wolf & Lamb among the afternoon's highlights. Same time, next year? You bet. In the meantime, watch the post-fest video below—and scroll down for scenes from AIM, arranged in vaguely chronological order.
All photos: Vivian Gaumand, This is HERD.