25th April, 2015
The moo was most definitely groovin’.
I’m not what you’d call a ‘festy head’ (note lack of being shredded for stereos, bruh), so it was a rare thing that I could be dragged into the mud and rain for a music festival, of all things. I admit, the lineup did it for me – Sticky Fingers, Flight Facilities, Hermitude, Meg Mac, Hilltop Hoods. With several of my favourite artists playing so close to home, I really couldn’t not go.
While not quite sold out, the event was well attended – despite the weather (cold, wet, muddy). Between my laughter I admit to feeling a shred of pity for the girls who wore short shorts and some version of not-gum boots. Said boots were really the only suitable option as the ground soon became muddier than a debate in an ethics class:
The quality of most of the artists was top notch, especially Meg Mac, The Preatures, and Flight Facilities. Sticky Fingers, one of the most anticipated acts, did deliver – but I admit they left something to be desired. It seemed like an ‘on stage, sing, off stage’ deal for them: very little crowd interaction, but good listening nonetheless. Note the keyboard player rockin’ the undies and biker ‘stache.
There were a couple of other issues such as very little (no) seating, lack of cover and a shortage of coffee vendors, but the variety and quality of food was excellent. I got food twice during the 12-hour event, and admit to buying from the same pie stand twice… they were that good! If you see them around, check ’em out: Bakerhus. As with much street food, the surroundings and atmosphere ‘makes it’, and that’s the case here as well. Standing in the rain up to your shins in mud, hot potato-ing a pie back and forth between your hands as you try and shove as much of the intensely savoury, piping hot filling into your mouth as possible. Ah, the Adelaide Hills.
The pastry had just the right amount of give, forcing you to eat it quickly, while still being crisp and oh so buttery. Although I’m no pienoisseur (just go with it), I hadn’t come across a roast chicken pie before and was surprised how well it worked; chunks of carrot and potato with shreds of chicken in a rich, thick gravy – and just the right amount of spice. But enough about pie, or I’ll make myself hungry …again.
I think you could well and truly make a spectator sport out of mud diving – that is, the winner being the least graceful faceplant into mud. Standing around the wettest area of the ‘oval’ (mud bath) was the prime area to watch drunk onesie-wearing people pitch forward and cop a mouthful of mud. Quality entertainment, recommended for next year.
Later in the night came the more exciting acts, though Charli XCX did feel out of place in a mostly home-grown, indie-styled lineup. Still, the duo got people excited for the rest of the night’s acts. Hermitude played an excellent set, and Hilltop Hoods showed that they’ve still got it.
Capping off the night at 10:10, right after the Hoods, were Flight Facilities. These guys were definitely the standout for me. End of the night, everybody is drenched and caked in mud, and all packed under the tent. Significant areas of the ‘pit’ are off-limits because of their glue-like qualities and everyone is quite drunk. They opened with the classic pilot’s speech, welcoming us and thanking the audience for “Choosing to fly with Flight Facilities”, and from there it’s just a fantastic blur. Heart Attack, live vocals from Owl Eyes, With You, Clair De Lune, just awesome. After being slightly disappointed that their latest album felt a bit ‘slow’, I was amazed at the improvement when played live; the right mixing, live vocals and sampling (seriously impressive), professional lighting and stage design. These guys were far and away the most enjoyable to experience.
Overall a great time: grab some mates, warm clothes and wellies and enjoy yourselves.
9/10 (6/10 if you’re not such a fan of the artists)
Had to take a picture of the guys’ bathrooms as everybody was leaving, it’s classic:
It’s like 5,000 guys with muddy boots came in to p- oh, wait…