So I have just gotten back and suitably showered and napped after my first ever festival. Now music isn’t something I would usually write about on this blog because I don’t know enough about it. However live music is a performance and so I can definitely write about that and let you all know how my experience was and what I would do differently next time. My highlights from the festival include (but are not limited to) the headline acts of course, experiencing the earth shattering bass of Glass Animals and seeing live comedy from the likes of Kathrine Ryan.
Before I start the rant and rave I should disclaim Muse are possibly one of my favourite bands and they were and always have been top of my bucket list to see live. However that aside as a whole performance they were brilliant, they combined amazing music with a stunning light show and a moving set creating perfection as far as I’m concerned. Lead singer Matt Bellamy held the audience’s attention so well with multiple costume changes, a stunning musical performance and by going down to the crowd. I possibly enjoyed this so much as I was near the barrier and involved in the mosh pits that were created throughout the set; this created a great atmosphere as I really felt everyone around me was as excited as I was. This is the difference from the other two headline acts were I wasn’t as close and therefore didn’t get the same atmosphere. However I must say Kasabian worked the crowd incredibly playing fan favourites such as Shoot the Runner and eez-eh. And how could I not mention Eminem, this is an experience I never thought I would have in my life, bringing out guests and performing crowd favourites such as Lose Yourself as an encore was brilliant and really saw my festival experience end in style.
Other acts I simply must write about are Glass Animals, in their final UK show before they release their new album, drawing a surprisingly large crowd despite Eminem’s set starting before theirs ended they really brought their A game sound-wise. Standing at the barrier brought with it a fantastic view of the band and the ability to feel the bass throughout my entire body. I am a big fan of the band having discovered them earlier this year and they did not disappoint, my friend and I danced for the entire set and loved the their crowd interaction especially around the song Pork Soda. With the lyrics “Pineapples are on my head” featuring in this song so prominently the fruit was actually banned from the festival, this did not deter people in the end as the lead singer Dave Bailey taking a pineapple from the audience onto the stage with him. The best act of showmanship I saw at the weekend must go to Declan McKenna, who despite being only 18 he worked the BBC Radio 1 NME stage like a pro, he strutted his stuff on stage, climbed the set, and crowd surfed all while giving an excellent performance.
Going to the Alternative tent for comedy in the daytime was the one thing I needed to chill out and conserve my energy for later in the day. Seeing live comedy was also not something I expected to do this weekend so it was a pleasant surprise that Kathrine Ryan was doing a show. Sitting on the muddy floor with my cheesy chips watching a fantastic stand up comedienne was a perfect introduction to the world of live stand-up comedy. My friend had never heard of her before and thought she was hilarious with her commentary of single parent life.
I honestly had a great weekend and I am already planning to go to more festivals next year if I can. The people I camped near were really friendly, even if like usual I attract the stranger people in life who like to say weird things to you despite not knowing you everyone was lovely. I also experienced my first and second mosh pits while at the festival, now they may not be for everyone but the kindness I experienced from strangers who saw when it was becoming too much for me was astounding (shout out to the gentleman in the track suit that pulled me out during Muse). And although there are definitely things I will do differently next time there is nothing I would have changed about this experience.
The things I would do differently next time are:
- Picking a good camping spot. We moved camp later on in the first day to find more friendly neighbours and while this went well we ended up near Piccadilly party and all the shops meaning we got very little sleep. I would camp somewhere a little quieter next time.
- Not eating enough food. I took plenty of food with me to save money but after spending most of my time in the arena and only buying at most one meal a day, I definitely didn’t eat enough real food. Next time I would bring more money with me so I could buy real meals at least twice a day.
- Not going to any of the DJ sets. Now this year all the acts I planned to see where in the daytime or evening, this left me pretty tired when the day was over and not really up for going partying. Next time I might choose a day to sleep in later and go see a good DJ set and party a little more wildly.
Below I have included a list of all the music and comedy acts I managed to see throughout the weekend, now I didn’t see everyone I wanted to and I feel like you will always have to make compromises.
People I saw
- Pigeon Detectives
- Queens of the Stone Age
- Kathrine Ryan
- The Sherlocks
- Fickle Friends
- Milky Chance
- Liam Gallagher
- Daniel Sloss
- Circa Waves
- Two Door Cinema Club
- The Districts
- The Pretty Reckless
- Japanese House
- Sundara Karma
- Major Lazer
- Glass Animals
- Declan McKenna
- Jimmy Eat World
- Josie Long