The outdoor stage is one of the two newer stages at the festival, and I think it’s the one which has allowed most for the expansion of the festival. The name outdoor stage would suggest it’s a risky stage for three of the whitest girls to spend their time at on two of the sunniest days of the year, but we persevered and layered up the factor 50 and boy, was it worth it. Last year the stage played host to people including Dan Croll, Rag n Bone Man and Zak Abel.
There’s nothing like someone your own age playing songs they’ve written at a festival whilst you proceed to consume your own body weight in Pimms to make you feel inadequate. Having worked on his latest EP with Hugo from Bombay Bicycle Club, it’s clear he’s a massive talent and he has so much more ahead of him. I think he’s definitely one to keep an eye out for, and if you get the chance to see him, it’s so worth it.
Outlya were definitely a highlight for me on Saturday, I thought they were absolutely phenomenal. They had such a good relationship with the crowd, and they managed to perform in a way that meant that you felt like you knew them. At the end of their set, we were all left just wanting them to play more songs, which is quite a good feeling, if a little annoying because it means you enjoyed it.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen people this effortlessly cool in person before, these California guys absolutely smashed their set on Saturday night. Everyone was dancing, and looked like they were having a great time, which was super lovely to see. If they’re returning soon for a UK tour, I’d recommend seeing them, their laidback music can’t fail to chill you out and make you have fun.
Keir was just what we all needed on a sleepy, hungover Sunday morning. He was a welcome change of pace and his style of upbeat indie pop got people up and dancing and set the tone for the rest of the day. Dressed in what I’m gonna say was the coolest jacket of the weekend (and there were some contenders) he managed to get people up and moving who looked a little bit worse for wear, which is very impressive in itself.
Marsicans are a band that make me never want to stop dancing, I love their brand of feel-good indie and could listen to it all day. They really got the crowd ready for the evening and it was so nice to see Arms of Another live. If you’ve not checked these guys out, they’re definitely worth a listen when you need
something to lift your spirits up and remind you that there is always fun around you. What made their set even better was that they looked like they were having as much fun as the crowd which always makes me so happy to see.
I’m pretty sure Nathan Ball has been at this festival most times I’ve been there but, being extremely dopey, I’d never paid him much attention. I knew he had a good voice but I didn’t really know any of his songs. However, this year I made the effort to go and properly see him and not just walk past and listen to the odd song, and I’m so glad I did. All his songs were lovely to listen to and his voice is actually incredible. So, after several years I can finally say I saw him and loved it.
As fab as everyone else on this stage was, Tom Grennan really stole the show for me. I knew he was going to be great, but I was worried I’d bigged him up to my friends too much. He in no way disappointed. Tom Grennan is definitely one to watch in the next year or so. His massive vocals accompanying his soulful songs make for some absolutely stunning songs. Hearing him perform them live actually left me speechless. What an entertainer, he built such a great relationship with the crowd and when he wasn’t singing he was making everyone laugh, which is just as important as the actual singing I think, to actually entertain people. He was completely captivating and we all thought he was incredible.
I’m sorry if the relentless positivity comes off as ingenuine, I honestly did love everyone I saw on this stage, and I’m much more of the opinion that if you don’t have anything nice to say don’t say anything at all. Music is so subjective that not everyone will love everything, and if I don’t like something someone else is bound to. I’d rather just try and get word out about more artists that I think people would like.