Report: Evenstar Festival, La Roche-sur-Yon, France 2023

8.OO0 festival-goers attended the Evenstar Festival in La Roche-sur-Yon, western France. For its fourth edition, the festival opted for an international high-flying line-up !

The first evening kicked off with DK & Baal, a band selected by the public and winner of a contest before a professional jury. After a crowd-pleasing reggae fusion set, The Prophecy Band took to the stage with Jah Thunder. Capleton then set the audience on fire with his extraordinary stage presence! Special mention must go to the acapella performance delivered by the King of Fire with great emotion. The evening continued with rising Jamaican reggae star Lila Iké, followed by Protoje sharing some of his classics to the delight of fans. Finally, sound system aficionados turned out in force for the solid, rhythmic performance of Stand High Patrol, which brought the first day to a close.

After a great start with Soom T, the “Raggamuffin Queen”, the second evening continued with Tiken Jah Fakoly, a legend of African reggae. Accompanied by his excellent musicians, he set the audience on fire with his engaging songs and top-quality scenography. Alborosie then won over festival-goers with his charisma and contagious energy. Big up to Aixiba Koroma for her wicked dance performance on stage and in the public! Massive crowds turned out to see the duo L’Entourloop close the evening.

Over the course of the three days, bands wandered among the audience during set changes. Festival-goers enjoyed Radio Byzance’s excellent selections, witnessed a fabulous performance by the Ensemble National du Reggae (ENR), renowned for their covers of reggae’s greatest hits in marching band mode, and danced with the Brazilian percussion group Batala Nantes.

The final evening kicked off with French reggae. Volodia, very close to the audience, warmed up the room with his hard-hitting tracks, followed by Taïro for a concert in total harmony with the festival-goers. It was Patrice’s turn to take to the stage and share some of his greatest hits, before descending among the festival-goers for a few minutes. The audience really appreciated the performance! The evening came to a close with the arrival of the charismatic Julian Marley, accompanied by the Uprising. As sunny and magnetic as ever, he delivered a masterful performance to an audience on fire! Big up to all the artists for their energy and to the reggae massives for their presence at this latest edition of the Evenstar Festival!

By Claire Bottier for

Evenstar Festival, Roche-sur-Yon, France