Beat Cinema’s Turn Down Tent at Coachella Is a Mind Melting Experience

After a day filled with standing for hours on end, trekking acres of polo fields and shaking your ass to uptempo jams, you could really use a place to unwind. The Turn Down (a tent located at the Arts Center right by the Silent Disco)  is just the place to grab a pillow, lay down, and take in some mind melting visuals and ambient downtempo grooves.

The Turn-Down tent has provided Coachella goers with a late-night, mellow and psychedelic hideaway for 3-years and counting.

“It’s become such a staple that people look for the Turn Down,” says Michael Davis who performs as DMM and one of the founders of Beat Cinema and the Turn Down tent. According to Davis, word of mouth about the trippy yet mellow space has spilled from across the Coachella campgrounds to Coachella Reddit forums. 

For those unaware of the local beat scene in SoCal, the Turn Down is the perfect place to discover what Beat Cinema— a local collective of beat heads from L.A to O.C. and even the I.E.— has become known for since 2009. It’s an intimate environment of live abstract visual projections provided by Major Gape and a gathering of eclectic producers from Beat Cinema residents such as DMM, Rick2Fresh and Mousey to notable guests from the beat scene such as Gaslamp Killer, Dreampanther and Ras G.

After a friend of the Beat Cinema collective who worked for Goldenvoice (the production company behind Coachella) asked Major Gape to perform his projections one year, the idea grew and Beat Cinema founders Rick Gonzalez and Davis were eventually asked to join the Turn Down crew too. With Coachella literally becoming bigger very year, we wouldn’t be surprised if the Turn Down tent expanded into a larger experience.

After laying down on the dozens of pillows on the floor of the Turn Down tent, I couldn’t help but think that this space felt like an opium den yet the ambient beats and kaleidoscopic visuals were all the drugs one needed. In a span of a few minutes, eccentric mixes of Radiohead, Chance the Rapper, Slum Village and Toro Y Moi floated across the tent and made the environment feel like a low-key, musical oasis nestled in a corner of the massive Coachella festival grounds.

“I’d describe it as a place to come if you want to unwind—at the same time, we don’t just play sleepy stuff…it goes everywhere every night,” Davis says, “it’s just something different—if you want to dance, you can dance, if you just want to relax, come to the Turn Down.”

Turn down at the Turn Down tent every weekend of Coachella at the Arts Studios in Camp Center (LOT 8) Thurs 9p.m.-3a.m. and Fri-Sun 11p.m.-3a.m. Still want more trippy beat shows post-Coachella? Catch the Beat Cinema collective at Acerogami at the Glass House every 4th Wednesday of the month and bi-weekly at Tokyo Beat in Los Angeles.

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