Jackson Langford went uptown in the mud and dishes on the best of the best and worst of the worst.
Ahhh, Splendour in the Grass! That one glorious weekend north of Byron Bay that screws all students up because it’s the weekend before uni goes back. Frankly, I’m still recovering from what is hands down the best music festival Australia has. But there were so many individual key players in making sure this festival was outstanding despite the ankle-deep mud, and key players that also detracted from it as well. Here are Yak’s picks for the Splendour Awards (Splendys) for 2015
Best Headlining Act – Florence & The Machine
We’re not sure if chance plays a part in this one. Blur just couldn’t muster up a crowd as big as Florence, and it was pouring rain during Mark Ronson’s set. In any case, once the donned-in-white siren fluttered out on to the stage, 30,000 punters lost their absolute shit. Her onstage persona is as booming as her voice, never shying away from crowd interaction (even dancing on stage with some drunk bloke from the audience rocking a wedding dress). Whether it be the stomping What Kind of Man, the deceivingly beautiful Sweet Nothing or the grandiose closer of Dog Days Are Over, this woman and her machine made sure that the Saturday shone as bright as her very star.
Best Australian Act – Tame Impala
“Kevin Parker is our lord and saviour,” said the internet following their stellar Sunday set. Despite noticeable omissions of new classics Cause I’m a Man and Eventually, Kevin Parker and his boys took the stage for an hour of psychedelic, swaying goodness. The epic Let It Happen opened their set, getting everyone in the perfect mood for modern-day karaoke Feels Like We Only Go Backwards.
Rising Star – Tkay Maidza
Granted, the M.O.B rapper/singer’s star has been rising for quite some time now, but I tell you she’s destined for bloody greatness. She’s a little firecracker with boundless energy, and the crowd completely fed off that at the absolutely chokkers Mix-Up Stage.
Best Blindside Act – Purity Ring
I daresay most punters would not have called Purity Ring to have one of the greatest sets of the entire festival, but anyone who saw their ridiculous light show accompany their thumping set that was banger after banger would have certainly changed their tune.
Best Song – Uptown Funk – Mark Ronson
There’s no way anyone could say any different.
The “I feel really sorry for you right now” award – Blur
Blur were pegged as the headliner for the festival, and in many ways they still were. They were a giant slab of nostalgia packed into a 90-minute set and Damon Albarn rocked consistently from start to finish. To be honest, however, the crowd they pulled just didn’t match the hype they have as a band. Sure, songs like Parklife and Girls Who Like Boys went off and I don’t think I need to explain how phenomenal it was to see Song 2 live, but they were here in promotion of their new record, The Magic Whip, which I’m not sure many people listened to. Not to mention, when you have hot property like Carmada and Earl Sweatshirt clashing with your allotted set, I’m not sure what more you could expect.
Worst Sportsmanship – Azealia Banks
I’m not sure what’s worse: the fact that Azealia Banks said the festival was a “waste of my f***ing time” or the fact that she said this and put on one of the most energetic and incomparable sets of the Saturday? ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Biggest Yawn – Jarryd James
Not that his music is particularly energetic, but god damn it, James, I frankly expected more.
Best Food – Beatbox Kitchen
I can guarantee that if you ever venture to Melbourne and grab some fries with relish and mayo from this little joint, your life WILL change.
Most Worn Attire – The Tune Rag
Obviously gumboots were worn the most, but given the 4,000 or so times #splendourinthemud was hashtagged, I feel like everyone got the point. The tune rag, however, was also commonplace for the festival, with people holding up pieces of material that simply read TUNE when a killer song came on.
Biggest Disappointment – Anyone that was wearing a Native American headdress
To quote one dickhead: “some people are coming up to me and telling me it’s racist.”
Gee, I wonder why that is, son?
Image: Jackson Langford.