LIVE REVIEW: Splendour In The Grass 2015 – DAY ONE
Splendour In The Grass is one of Australia’s biggest music festivals and rightfully so. The lineup always brings some of the industries heavyweights to our shores while showcasing some of the best up and coming talent in the indie pop/rock scene. The 2015 line up was no exception and it was no doubt that we were in for a pretty amazing weekend.
Walking into the Splendour grounds on Friday morning it quickly became noticeable that it was going to be a VERY muddy weekend and over the course of the three days we would only see it get worse.
Kicking off my 2015 Splendour weekend was one of my favourite bands of right now; Urban Cone. These Swedish lads had the energy turned all the way up and ignited a half hour set showcasing tracks of their new album “Polaroid Memories”. Their smooth harmonies and captivating indie-dance beats translated well live and if you went to their set unknown to who they were you definitely walked away a fan. Early highlights of their set were “Weekends”, “We Are Skeletons”, “Treasure” and their recent single “Come Back To Me” which they had Megan Washington join them on stage to sing Tove Lo’s part. Closing of their set with “Sadness Disease” their sampler wasn’t working so they asked the crowd to sing the infectious sound effect and the massive crowd obliged creating one of the most magical and epic moments of the festival. Looking back at this set now, this was by far my favourite of the weekend. There is only one word that really describes how I felt after seeing them live; I M P R E S S E D
The soundtrack for the afternoon was Sancisco and The Rubens who both delivered entertaining sets that transformed the amphitheater into massive singalongs. The lead singer of The Rubens jumped into an inflatable kids pool and crowd surfed ending their set on a massive high. Death Cab For A Cutie gave punters a more mellow set which felt out of place in between such high energy acts.
Tkay Maidza has played almost every Australian music festival over the past two years and this was already her second time playing Splendour In The Grass. However this time she had a massive production, a bigger crowd and a transformed stage presence. This was my seventh time seeing Tkay live and this was by far the best I have ever seen her perform. She seemed so comfortable on stage and was killing it with her audience interactions, her dance moves and her vocals were on point. The show was brand new compared to the same set she’s being playing for the past couple of months and saw her play new songs, have giant inflatables on stage and have two guys dressed as personal security guards watch over the crowds and stand either side of her. During “Brontosaurus” she brought some people on stage to dance in Brontosaurus suits and I may or may not have been one of them slut dropping it. Closing her set with “M.O.B” she had monopoly money sent into the air as confetti before saying goodnight to the packed tent.
I didn’t quite know what to expect from Of Monsters And Men’s set but they surprised me with a captivating set that showcased songs from their two studio albums. Their light show was very basic but perfectly complimented the songs relaxed nature. “Crystals” was an early set favourite followed by “Human’, “Mountain Sound” and “Little Talks”. Their stage presence isn’t massive but their sound is so hypnotic that you couldn’t help but sway along.
Mark Ronson easily brought one of the biggest productions to the Splendour In The Grass stage this year with massive LED screens, cool props, big platforms and an array of special guests. Opening with “Feel Right” and “Ooh Wee” he had the crowd jumping like crazy before launching into the infectious “Bang Bang Bang” and “The Bike Song”. Throughout the set Ronson jumped in and out of the booth he was located on and played an array of instruments showing his versatility. Daniel Merriweather joined him on stage for a slick performance of “Stop Me If You Think You’ve Heard This One Before” and “Change” before letting Keyonne Star invade the stage to bring some sass and crazy vocals on “I Can’t Lose”. Kevin Parker (Lead singer from Tame Impala) was the next special guest to join Ronson on stage and gave the crowd an unforgettable performance of “Daffodils” as well as “Summer Breaking” and “Leaving Los Feliz”. His vocals echoed erringly through the amphitheater and with the rain pouring down it created the perfect moment. I regrettably left early because of the rain so I didn’t get to witness the epic dance breakdowns of “Uptown Funk” or the emotional tribute to Amy Winehouse during “Valerie” but the ¾ of the set I saw was impressive. Mark Ronson stepped it up and delivered a very unique and cool show. He was very humble and gracious on stage and was the perfect MC/Conductor for this big performance.