If everyone is a VIP, is anyone?
As soon as you entered the vicinity of St Kilda, the amount of lanyard-wearing kids started increasing exponentially. Enter the actual grounds, and it seemed like roughly 50% of the attendees were sporting a lanyard of some sort. Sorry, but if anything more than 5% of a population is a “VIP”, then it doesn’t really mean anything, does it.
Never underestimate the importance of sound quality
One of the many reasons I attend gigs and festivals is to hear the music I listen to day-to-day being blasted up to a higher-level. I never really realised how important and great it is to be able to physically feel the music. Regrettably, Listen Out didn’t nail this. Not sure if it was because of council restrictions on noise control or what (because St Kilda Festival somehow manages it), but the music was simply not loud enough. And it’s unfortunate that their name is literally “Listen Out”. The entire festival felt like the background music of in-between DJ sets. It was like we were waiting around for the “main act” the whole time, which never came. A huge atmosphere killer. Another side-effect of this? Having to perfectly clearly listen to every inane conversation being had around me. I just don’t care about your beard, your love life or how great it was to sit on that guy’s shoulders.
EDIT: It seems like we’re not the only ones who thought this (and if you want a good laugh, check out these posts to their Facebook page).
Ryan Hemsworth, be mine
My favourite Hemsworth and the undisputed act of the day for me. He’s already showcased his talent for picking out undiscovered gems of music through his Secret Songs project, and his entire set – apart from his own and a few bangers – was basically concocted of relatively unknown but excellent music. What’s more, if on purpose or not, he had a real progression to his set, starting slow and building up and up. Come back soon, please.
And the rest
Client Liaison drew their usual cult-like crowd early in the day. There was a definite proportionately large number of people wearing Client Liaison merchandise. Basenji is adorable and you cannot deny how fun his music is. Alison Wonderland banged out her usual set – just read any of our past reviews because it was nearly the exact same. SBTRKT, Hayden James and Roland Tings were all somewhat disappointing probably due to the aforementioned sound issues.
The thing about a physically smaller festival is that you just manage to catch a lot more of the unfortunate consequences of drug and alcohol. For example, seeing a girl calmly being helped by a medical officer across the grounds with one of those aluminium foil wraps for hyperthermia wrapped around her waist. My friends and I thought, “Poor girl”, before, on closer inspection, noting a very suspicious orange-brown substance running down her legs. Now that is an anti-drug advertisement if I ever saw one.
While there are definite improvements to be implemented in the future, the venue itself was utterly photogenic and a joy to be in. A far cry from the wastelands of the Flemington Racecourse and Melbourne Showgrounds.
Hold up, hold up
We obviously gotta talk about Childish Gambino. Topless with a white headband around his head, he owned the crowd. He must never get sick of listening to thousands of people singing “3005” back to him. NO MATTER WHAT YOU SAY OR WHAT YOU DO, WHEN I’M ALONE I’D RATHER BE WITH YOU. Excitement levels building for his Like a Version this Friday.
Exclusively hand-picked just for you, by Jane.