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Cosmic Pineapple is bringing rave and spirituality together to revive Ibiza's freak scene

The party has landed at Pikes for its third season

  • Words: Johnny Pemberton | Images: Phrank
  • 19 July 2018

This is the third year of Cosmic Pineapple at Pikes, an inimitable 12-hour ceremony of dance music and spiritualism designed to encourage ravers to step outside their comfort zones in order to awaken their conscious selves.

In year one, Cosmic Pineapple was themed on the four elements: earth, air, fire and water. In year two, the spotlight switched to the fifth element: love. This summer, the presiding theme is the human chakra system, with each event focusing on one of the seven energy centres of the body.

"The last ceremony concentrated on the root chakra," says Cosmic Pineapple creator Kim Booth. "That party was all about grounding, feeling safe and awakening your connection to Mother Earth. Today it's all about sacral energy, the second chakra, our divine seat of creation, creativity, flow and sex energy."

The first six hours of the ceremony, from 4pm to 10pm, are dedicated to creating cosmic vibes in the open air. Then from 10pm until 4am, the party moves indoors to the most intimate dancefloor on the island, where the legendary Josh Wink will be supplying the beats later in the evening.

All of this afternoon's yoga, tantra, meditation and healing workshops take place in a huge white geodome at the far end of the venue. According to Kim, this is a magical space and a bona-fide hub of cosmic activation.

Stepping inside the geodome to join the 6pm tantra class, Elena Texidor invites 20 of us to walk slowly around the interior, making eye contact with each other as we pass. Soul gazing is way more challenging than it sounds. Our closed society promotes so much fear and division that a heads-down existence, where glances are typically exchanged for less than a few seconds, seems perfectly normal. But after a few minutes working with Elena you quickly realise that it isn't. Even so, all it takes is a little practice and before long we're breaking down our conditioning - 20 complete strangers from across the planet wandering shoeless around inside a huge dome in the midst of the Ibizan hills, gazing into each others eyes with a view to reading each others emotions.

Later we wander up to the famous Club Tropicana pool where the Pineapple Pool Party is in full swing. The sun is setting and there are still a few people in the water, lounging around on inflatables, but mostly people are ordering mojitos from the bar and getting into the music. Which makes sense, after all, Josh Wink is currently on the decks, his set broadcasting live on Ibiza Sonica Radio. The Wink is selecting tunes you wouldn't normally associate with the king of acid, yet the fusion of Italo disco and New York house classics he's drawing up from the deepest fathoms of his record bag befits the poolside, early evening cocktail and chitchat vibe.

Back down in the garden, healers from across the island have set up stall on the grass beside the entranceway to the hotel. Including numerologist Silvia Mariti, who invites us over to her table for a reading. She takes our name and date of birth, then begins making complicated calculations on a sheet of paper.

"Your life path number signifies the main lesson you are here to learn throughout your life," she explains. "You have life path number nine, which is the humanitarian. You are here to help other people. This number also effects all the rest, so if you are not helping other people I imagine you will feel a kind of frustration. Nine is the number of the doctors, healers, religious and spiritual leaders. Number nines are very sensitive. They are the empaths, which means they receive messages and feel things intuitively. In the tarot this is the number of the hermit. They need to be on their own a lot, not because they are unable to deal with people, but they need to go up to the top of the mountain to observe the world from a different perspective. This period of retreat, always within nature, is a time to recharge the batteries before the hermit comes back down to impart what he or she has learnt."

At 10pm Cosmic Pineapple shifts into night mode. The doors to Freddies backroom are thrown open and a few hundred lucky souls hurry inside to engage the dancefloor.

Cosmic Pineapple resident Cici Cavanagh spends the first half-an-hour of her set dropping upfront house classics to get everyone moving, before leading the audience off on deeper, more mysterious journey.

11pm and many of the super spiritual folk we met earlier in the day in the geodome have now gone home. In their place, a more hedonistic crowd have rocked up to enjoy Cosmic Pineapple's afterhours agenda. And then there's us, blissfully enjoying the yin and the yang of it all, determined as we are to ride out the entire ceremony, from guided meditation to shots of mescal.

"The DJs playing here at Cosmic Pineapple are all people I used to work with when I was a dance music PR," Kim Booth explains when we bump into her on the dancefloor later in the night. "They get the whole spiritual thing. Josh Wink was one of the first DJs to come on board. And we have Cassy playing at our next party on July 26. All the people on the line-up are waking up themselves and they really want to take greater care of the planet."

At midnight, it's time for Ovum Records boss Josh Wink to get behind the decks. It's a very special thing to have the opportunity to see and hear one of the all-time electronic music greats plying his trade up close and personal at an intimate venue like Pikes. It's almost like having Josh spinning tunes in your living room and we're all raving away, totally conscious of how lucky we are.

"I loved tonight as well," Josh explains post-set. "I had the opportunity to play what I call heady, eyes-closed, deep techno music. I got to have musical therapy with a small crowd, where everybody closes their eyes and just feels it. Tonight inspired me to think about doing a party here on a more regular basis. I get more satisfaction seeing people with their eyes closed and lost in the music than a crowd jumping up and down with their fists in the air. I love it whenever I get the chance to play this kind of music and I think I managed to translate the psychedelic, spiritual, conscious vibe of Cosmic Pineapple and bring it all together in a meditative, hypnotic kind of way. I had no requests tonight, which is weird. Usually someone will come up and request a track, but tonight they just trusted in what I was doing."

The final DJ of the night is Chicago-based star Hiroko Yamamura, who maintains Wink's deep tech-vibe for half-an-hour, before slowly leading the dancefloor into darker rave territory.

As well as being a focal point for spiritual seekers and underground dance music enthusiasts, Cosmic Pineapple is also aiding the rejuvenation of the fabulously unconventional freak scene which once defined Ibiza's clubland image. "Ibiza is legendary for all the spirited people who came together to create all these iconic club brands," says Raven. "The freak scene isn't as big as it once was, but I think it's coming back. I'm here on the island with Glitterbox this summer as their brand ambassador and I really do think Glitterbox is helping to promote that kind of look back to the mainstream. Pikes, too, is a real bohemian fairground. It's not a club; it's more like a house party. And the people who come here to Cosmic Pineapple are the real spiritual dwellers on the island. You never know who you are going to meet or what you're going to learn, which is exactly what partying in Ibiza is all about."

"The freak vibe, we still have it," adds Cosmic Pineapple performer Baby Jane. "And there are still more than enough people on the island who truly believe in this culture for it to simply fade out, but at the moment it's not as big as it once was. Even so, we can still be grounded in Ibiza, we can still feel at home here and we still feel welcome. This is very important, because everywhere you go in life, even if it's just for dinner with friends, you have to feel welcome, otherwise it is not your place to be. Here at Cosmic Pineapple we give people the freedom to be themselves, to express themselves, their feelings, their emotions, how they dance, what they want to say, what they want to give, without forcing them to play a role. This is our message: communication, sharing, giving energy and love. It's also about disconnecting from certain things, because we all need time and space to show our other side. Life right now is about what you can do within the system to find your own space to disconnect, otherwise, if you're not strong enough, you will get lost."

Cosmic Pineapple takes place on July 26 and September 6 at Pikes. Full details here. Each Cosmic Pineapple event raises money for different charitable causes

Johnny Pemberton is Mixmag's Ibiza correspondent

Phrank is a freelance photographer and regular contributor to Mixmag. Follow him on Instagram here

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