With fear still heavily cemented into my brain over the arctic temperatures of Splendour 2018 I seriously over packed for the weather conditions and apparently so did everyone else. Long gone are mesh dresses with g-strings and all hail the mountain climber ski suits and oversized ponchos. I’m happy to say that I could count on two hands the amount of bare butts I saw this year with classy clothing and bouijee furr coats making a serious comeback and everyone looked amazing!
I kicked off my day later in the afternoon with US group FIDLAR at the Amphitheatre stage. Despite refusing to do a shoey which I thought was a little ill form, they played like absolute pros and the crowd was massively responsive. Smashing through singles 40oz. On Repeat and Why Generation, I managed to fit in some well sought after boogie time amongst an enthusiastic and vocal crowd. An all girl mosh pit was enforced which had dare devil babes racing to the front, it was a tight set and we all bloody love it.
Walking towards the Mix Up stage you could already hear the chants of “Ohhh Thiago Silva” as South London grime artist Dave took to the stage. After his incredible set at Glastonbury this year and the famous viral video of fan Alex rapping to Thiago Silva it was no wonder so many people came to see him. Dave’s rap style was very smooth and you could easily sway along to his tracks even if you hadn’t heard them before. Half way through his set Dave brought up to the stage a fan from the crowd Nick to sing Thiago Silva. It was the moment everyone had been waiting for, and although Nick was definitely no Alex the crowd still lost their minds to the high intensity grime track anyway. Throughout the crowd there were still some super fans who knew all the words to tracks such as Funky Friday and Disaster which definitely made up for those who only really wanted to hear the one track.
Hayden James set on the Amphitheatre stage was definitely one of the more detailed on stage performances with two massive flashing squares and incredible lighting displays. Bringing out a gospel choir for single Nowhere To Go, this was slick and professional and brought dance moves out of everyone. With an epic light show that shone over the whole packed out mosh pit Hayden smashed through singles Just Friends, Numb and Favours with help from feature artist Nat Dunn. I was enjoying Hayden’s set so much I didn’t really take many notes so you will just have to believe me when I say it was really good.
Winston Surfshirt has very chilled out and loungy tracks but for some reason they are also very captivating. No matter what single he played the crowd loved it and with a few renditions to his original recordings his set was kept interesting. With the introductions of some killer horn sets and the sound of Winston’s vocals live it was an incredible set and a great first impression. Playing tracks such as For The Record and a killer cover of Geanie In A Bottle by Christina Aguilera, Winston kept the crowd on their toes and they were loving it. Just when I thought his set was coming to an end Winston finished off his set with my favourite single Be About You which opened the tent up to a massive singing dance party.
I didn’t plan on seeing Broods but as the temperatures dropped I huddled in with the crowd and watched as front woman Georgia Nott took over the stage. Playing tracks such as Bridges, super fans all through out the mosh were singing at the top of their lungs paired with equally as passionate dance moves. Broods had the perfect mix of loungy tunes with upbeat chorus’s to keep the crowd pumping for their entire set and the good vibes kept on flowing. Finishing up with popular single Peach, Broods wrapped up their set on the high and the crowd loved it.
Russ was by far my highlight act of the entire day. My partner has been listening to him for years and thankfully convinced me to give him a listen in the lead up to Splendour. This was the first time I was catching Russ live and he did more than live up to my expectations. Unlike most rappers, every track by Russ told a story. Every song was emotionally driven and the diction and clarity in his voice made me fall in love with his songs all over again. Playing tracks such as Psycho Pt.2, Losin Control and Ride Slow, Russ had the crowd rapped around his little finger and everyone was loving it. Russ seemed suitably stoked that so many people knew all the words to his songs and he made sure to give the whole crowd a massive shout out before leaving the stage.
With Day #2 about to commence, stay tuned for tomorrows update on all things Splendid at Splendour In The Grass 2019!
PHOTO || MITCH LOWE PHOTOGRAPHY.