Day 2 provided another 30 degree scorcher and people from all over the festival were already showing off their sun burnt and hungover bodies. I on the other hand had a decent sleep and with one beer down and some festival gems slapped on my face I was amped and ready for the musical madness ahead.
Pennsylvania indie rock outfit Modern Baseball tore the roof off the forest stage. Easily one of the most likeable international acts on the Falls Festival line up the band started their set with a huddle before kicking off 2016 LP single Holy Ghost. The crowd was loving every minute that the 4 piece was on stage and as the sun shined bright, fans were making the most of their time spent risking 3rd degree burns to see Modern Baseball rock out. Their upbeat tracks Wedding Singer and Your Graduation were definitely the crowd favourites as sing-along’s emerged throughout the wild crowd and bouncing bodies created a steam heat of epic proportions. Those who took a chance on the relatively small band that is Modern Baseball were not disappointed as smiling and sweaty bodies left left the forest stage on a high.
Packing out the forest stage, Illy had the most enthusiastic crowd I had seen so far. Starting us off with his older tracks such as On & On and Youngbloods, the energy he was putting into each track was feeding the crowds vibe like nothing I had seen before. The mosh pit was like a sauna but that didn’t deter fans from singing at the top of their lungs and partying as Illy rolled out every banger that he had. Near the end of his set Illy swung into his Like A Version from a few years back which features an epic mashup of Silverchair’s Tomorrow, Nosebleed Section by Hilltop Hoods and more. As the anticipation for his latest singles grew, Illy kept the crowd pumped and on their toes by starting a ‘Hell Yeah’ chant and leaping around the stage before transitioning into Swear Jar. Just as fans couldn’t take it any longer, Illy kicked off his crowd favourite chart topping tracks Catch 22 and Papercuts, to which the crowd was leaping over each other and going crazy just as Illy and his band were. Illy’s on stage presence was so uplifting and exciting that he could have played jingle bells and fans would have lost their shit, he put on a killer performance and I would watch it all again.
Matt Corby the god that he is, is like the biscuit to a hot cup of coffee on a lazy Sunday morning, captivating, smooth and just perfection. Unlike many other acts, majority of the crowd were sitting, but whether sitting or standing they couldn’t keep themselves still as bodies swayed all around the main stage. Matt Corbys recorded tracks are nothing compared to his live performance, even those that turn their noses up at his music fall in love when hes on the stage up close and intimate. Making an early appearance with the flute for single Belly Side Up, he later switched for a guitar for Knives Edge. The fan favourites were by far Brother and Resolution, but to be fair the hairs were standing up on the back of our necks with every soul infused sound Corby made. With beautiful harmonies and share talent from both Corby and his band, the group covered Tina Arena’s track Chains which was met with a loud cheer from crowd. Sharing his love from start to finish, Corby was grateful for those who made it out to see him as well as the cool breeze that was finally making its way through the park lands.
Front-man Luke’s raspy vocals could bring out the wild side of anyone, Luke the bassists continuous hair flicks could get your grandma head banging and then you mix that with Michael and James’s unruly high energy and you have an act that no matter how many times you see them will never get old.
Australia’s favourite grunge rock group Violent Soho were not wasting a minute of time on stage. It wasn’t long before the crowd was completely riled up as Soho threw a few Milton Mangoes into the crowd before kicking off their set with No Shade. Dead centre in the mosh, Violent Soho had one of craziest crowds of the night with circle pits forming before every breakdown and lyrics screamed with every song. Starting off with tracks from their latest album ‘WACO’ meant it wasn’t long before Soho ripped into crowd favourite and #4 triple js hottest 100 track Like Soda. Although most people would have seen Soho more than once before, their ever changing set-list always keeps things interesting and thankfully even some of their earlier hits such as Neighbour Neighbour made it on the bill. Taking fans on a musical roller coaster, Soho were playing hit after hit as they rolled out Saramona Said and How To Taste to name a few and everybody could not get enough. Finishing on a high, Violent Soho closed their set with their most popular single Covered In Chrome and just like every time before, they absolutely killed it. #HELL F**K YEAH
I managed to catch the tail end of Sydney DJ LDRU (clashed with Violent Soho) and was surprised to see him completely slaying the forest stage with a packed out crowd that went for miles. Bodies upon bodies, standing up, on shoulders, sitting down their were people everywhere and LDRU was soaking it up with every heart popping beat. With a backlog of killer remixes and electronic beats, LDRU saved the best till last when jumping into Keeping Score and Next To You that completely dominated the crowds attention. Bringing Paige IV on stage with him to perform Keeping Score was a nice surprise and the crowd surely showed their appreciation.
Although I was only really there to hear their single Hoops, The Rubens pleasantly surprised me with a killer performance that made me stay. The New South Wales rock group had a tent full of hot flushed supporters and with every song the vibe was cohesive with both the band and the fans. Dropping their infectious track The Best We Got ruled out any chance of the crowd slowing down and before long The Rubens were rolling out banger after banger. My Gun and The Night Is On My Side were definitely some of the crowd favourites but taking out the top party score was their single Hoops as not a soul in the place wasn’t singing. The Rubens also smashed a cover of Chance The Rappers single Same Drugs which definitely filled a void for those who had wished for his announcement on the lineup. As the headline act for day 2 and taking us through to midnight, The Rubens were the perfect mixture of rock and relaxed for those who wanted to party into the night or get their 5 hours before the sun rose.