Written by Jia Ying Chia | Photos by @aerenielliere |
When the news of Borderland Music Festival pinged into my inbox, I will admit that I initially brushed it off as another small raver party taking place next door to Brunei. Boy, was I wrong. Meeting the brains behind Borderland, it became clear that the founders, Tiger Ming and Ben, has some really big plans. Hailing the inaugural festivals as the first and largest music festival in Borneo and a heavy-hitting lineup of international and Asian DJ’s — many who have probably never heard of Miri, Sarawak, let alone Borneo — the music festival has not only successfully put Miri on the map, but celebrated it. And yet, as I wandered through the grounds of the Coco Cabana at the Miri waterfront, the vibes were … dare I say, like being at a festival overseas? The level of professional organisation present at Borderland Music Festival made the two-day event a literal party. Borderland also made waves as the first Bornean music festival to embrace digitalisation with a cashless payment system, meaning less time worrying about your stuff and more time to dance the night away!
“We felt that the world has not given enough attention to this place (Miri) with such beautiful cultures and passion for music … Music festivals have always been about love, unity, peace and cultural exchange. And where better to celebrate all of that than in the breathtaking backdrop of Borneo?”, penned the Borderland team on their Instagram account. Judging by the huge smiles and happiness I’ve felt around me over the last 48 hours, I couldn’t agree more.