I awaken on this beautiful Sunday morning with still a quiet buzz in my ears and a steady thump in my head regardless of the two nights I have spent in a soft bed far, far away from the deafening music, the strange sensations reminding me of the hysterical laughter of the drunken minds around me.
We started off the afternoon in a sprint to King Tut’s Wah Wah Tent, in a (failed) attempt to secure front-row positioning for the Imagine Dragons set. I will confess to not being the most dedicated fan of Imagine Dragons, so when they opened with some new songs that close to no one knew I was somewhat disappointed but the buzz from just being there kept a good vibe throughout the huge audience. Eventually the played their hits, It’s Time, Radioactive and the like, which were good until a group of very drunk boys tried to start a mosh pit that ended in a fight.
After the slightly traumatic Imagine Dragons set, we sat ourselves down in a sunny patch and ate some of the chocolate that Katie had brought. I use the term ‘ate’ very loosely as it had all but entirely melted, so fingers turned quickly to spoons and faces quickly to napkins.
Then was, potentially, the highlight of the whole evening: our man, Kendrick Lamar. Kendy Lam. The crowd was incredible and the bass was so loud that when you touched your chest, you could feel it vibrating through you, which could have been a beautiful, spiritual experience, had the song playing not been ‘Bitch Don’t Kill My Vibe’. Being a girl who doesn’t like rap nor electro, I would still give Kendy 10/10
Tribes was next on our agenda, who none of us really knew but ended up being phenomenal. Guitar solo’s with some real passion are hard to find nowadays, but Tribes delivered far beyond my expectations. Ballads lovely enough to bring tears to your eye mixed with upbeat dance tracks culminated in a really fabulous set with lyrics that I understood the majority of, which I was grateful for after Kendrick Lamar.
After the dance party that was Kendy Lam and the intense discovery that was Tribes, Jake Bugg fit the bill of recovery act quite well. As we traipsed across the festival ground, dodging both empty and full beer glasses, unconscious bodies and endless boxes of noodles, the country-pop tones of Jake Bugg drew us not only toward him, but also back down onto the grass. I wasn’t a huge fan, but he was cute and the grass was soft so we sat and hummed along until ‘Lightning Bolt’ was played, which resulted in some dancing and attempts of singing along that probably, on the whole, offended at least one person around us.
Then the penultimate set, Phoenix! I cannot verbalize the absolute aural indulgence that was Phoenix’s set, it was truly glorious. They played the whole of Love Like a Sunset (Part I and II) and it was phenomenal, but the crowd interaction was just crazy, Thomas Mars got up on the barriers and sang to us and it was just amazing, I love seeing bands that truly love to perform.
Finally it was the moment that I had held my breath for the whole day — Mumford and Sons! My memory of the set is blurred somewhat by the floods of tears that the music caused, but I remember the beauty almost too clearly. I have not the slightest criticism nor disappointment and absolutely no qualms about making such a huge claim for the performance was absolutely sublime, each song sounding so much better than even the studio recordings that I feel superior to anyone who has not had the privilege of hearing them live.
Although now it is Monday evening and it took me more than a day to piece together all the fond memories, I hope you enjoy this anecdote from what was potentially one of the best day of my life, spent with some of the most beautiful and wonderful people that I have the pleasure of knowing.