This year I decided to boycott summer festivals. I’m done with massive lineups featuring every single hyped DJ, from the most obscure underground artist upwards, as long as it sells. I’m tired of running from stage to stage, cutting through crowds of kids boasting their fast-fashion festival looks, completely oblivious as to what’s playing; I’m too passionate about music to enjoy sets that are constantly peaking cause that’s what the crowd expects: fun, fun, fun. I’m done.

But Forte was different. More than a festival, this four-day weekender felt closer to an unpretentious rave for people who like proper techno. The line-up was mouth-watering this year, and the best thing about it is that nothing runs concurrently – each act gets undisputed airwaves, everyone under the influence of the same music.

So, when the Loose Lips crew was invited to Montemor-o-Velho to recount our perspective of the event, the decision to go was a no-brainer. I packed a few raving outfits and quite literally jumped on the train. No tent, no sleeping arrangement. Judging from my experience of the festival’s debut event, although there wouldn’t be many chances to sleep, I knew the campsite would offer the best accommodation for spontaneous, unprepared festival-goers. Set in Parque de Merendas, a picnic park in a small birch tree forest close to a stream, the campsite offers lots of shade, hammocks, mattresses, nets and many little corners to lay down and rest if one is too tired to join the official daytime party taking place down there.

On invitation from the lovely organisers of the campsite stage, Harris and Teresa, some of us stayed there in a simple tent in the backstage area. The rest of the crew stayed in an apartment 20km away in the coastal city of Figueira da Foz, while some of our Lisbon friends occupied a local lodge in the town, where we relaxed by the pool during the hottest hours of the day. By and large, we spent much of the time in the campsite listening to a host of national and international artists and DJs. To mention a few of the acts that we enjoyed, on Friday evening, Tiago Henriques and Jari Marjamaki of the Lisbon-collective Desterronics dropped an impromptu downtempo electro set; at around lunchtime on Saturday, Nuck Chorris (aka John-E), an old-school DJ from Lisbon, flooded the dancefloor with house, funk and disco classics; on Sunday morning, Japanese DJ Yumiko Watanabe delivered a beautiful early morning set filled with mystical ambient with groovy cosmic house and by the evening after-hours, Caroline Lethô, one of Portugal’s brightest emerging DJs, took to the decks to execute a fittingly bubbling, spaced-out techno set that gave a fitting closure to the three-day festival.