Field Day 2nd June 2012

This was the 2nd time I had attended Field Day. My first time at this festival was in 2009 where I witnessed the likes of First Aid Kit, King Charles, Delphic and Little Boots. Rain ended that Field Day early and it was set to do exactly the same this year. The main reason I was in attendance was to see Summer Camp. Once the timings had been confirmed I knew I was going to stay at the Laneaway Stage all day. The fact Spector, Sleigh Bells and The Vaccines were due to play on that stage were added bonuses.

The day was slightly soured by the fact you could not take food or drink onto the site. This was slightly annoying as I had packed a bag of items to eat and this had to be thrown away. I just don’t see the point of this when you get in you want to be front for the stage you want to be at and you wouldn’t want to lose your spot. Plus you have already spent £50 on a ticket why do you want to fork out more for food that is ridiculously overpriced?? Once in I made my way to the Laneaway stage. After seeing Two Jackals and Here We Go Magic play it was then onto something very intriguing and this being Blood Orange.

With Lightspeed Champion on effective hiatus, Devonté Hynes decided to concentrate on a new musical project more focused on electronica called ‘Blood Orange’. Now I had been a fan of Lightspeed Champion but I wasn’t aware of this side project. The 30 minute set consisted of material from the debut album Coastal Grooves which was released on Domino Records last August. I was really impressed with what was showcased. Dev is one talented individual and each track I found to be very smooth. There may have been little interaction with the audience the 7 songs performed literally blew my mind.

SET LIST

Champagne Coast
Sutphin Boulevard
Bad Girls
I’m Sorry We Lied
Forget It
Dinner
Telling (What’s Wrong With Me?)

Summer Camp are a band that I love. I have been a fan ever since Jeremy Warmsley introduced his new project at Owl Parliament in 2009. This band originally started life as a duo which then expanded to a trio. The members of this fantastic group include Jeremy Warmsley, the adorable Elizabeth Sankey and William Bowerman who played drums. The set that was played was mainly a showcase of material from debut album Welcome To Condale plus 2 songs from forthcoming EP Always and 2nd single Round The Moon (which did not feature on the debut release). “Check, tits, tits” Elizabeth said when testing her microphone. Minutes later they all took to the stage to deliver what was to be an outstanding set.

“Hi everybody, we’re called Summer Camp” Warmsley said to the audience. It was Welcome To Condale which opened up the set. This is the albums self titled track. The thing I most liked about the song is the fact it paints a perfect picture of the fictional suburban town Condale. Sankey took the lead and her vocals were rather sweet and they gelled to the wonderful melody perfectly. Welcome To Condale the last song which was written for the album and its lyrics were amazing. I found it to be extremely infectious and it is one you just want to sing along to. “You guys all look so cool. Field Day fuck yeah. I’m just saying random things” Elizabeth said before Jeremy introduced Last American Virgin. This song had a hip hop feel to it plus and an extraordinary whistling intro. The upbeat melody actually went perfectly with the old film clips which were being projected onto the backdrop. What followed straight after was Round The Moon. Warmsley took the lead for this song and Sankey provided the harmonies. Even though this didn’t appear on Welcome To Condale it had killer lyrics which were very sleek.  Down followed on after. This was a power pop song and both Elizabeth and Jeremy shared vocals. I really liked its lyrics because it makes you picture a story to the song. It feels as if Summer Camp created a film soundtrack to their own feature length. “I’m really sick but I didn’t want to cancel coz look at all of you” Sankey then said to the crowd. Warmsley responded with “It’s true she’s been on Lemsip all morning”. Elizabeth replied by saying “I’ve been injecting that. Lemon though, Lemon Lemsip. Any cherries in the house? Blackcurrant, come on blackcurrant. Blackcurrant Lemsip represent” before getting stuck into Done Forever. This number was very synthy as Jeremy played the keyboard. Elizabeth took lead for this strong number and her vocal range sent chills up my spine. “This is our new single it’s called Always” Sankey said when introducing the lead track from the forthcoming self titled EP. Always started off with Elizabeth dancing which made me smile. This song has grown on me immensely and I really liked the optimistic lyrics “We’ll always be together”. I look forward to purchasing my copy of this EP when it is released in July. It was then onto Life which again is taken from the Always EP. It felt as if this song could easily featured on the track listing to Welcome To Condale. Sankey mainly sung this wonderful song. At first it started off rather synthy then the drums came in which gave it that extra something. “This next song is for my friends Rory and Tom who are so glamorous they have to fly to Ibiza in literally like 2 hours. And it is also for my sister because if I don’t mention her I’ll be in big trouble” Elizabeth said after Jeremy had plugged the forthcoming EP. Losing My Mind was next on the night and the lyric content to this song was superb. Both Jeremy and Elizabeth share the vocals for this song. Losing My Mind is basically detailing the story of a couple who are fighting and having arguments. “Is everyone having a good time? This is one of the first songs we ever wrote” Warmsley said before they both launched into the contagious Ghost Train. This upbeat song had killer hooks. Better Off Without You was played straight after. At first you think that this song is about a relationship that has come to an end hence its title better off without you. But in fact this song was about denial. Again this song was infectious and had a powerful force. “I love you London. I love you Field Day. Never change” Sankey said before the set ended with I Want You. From the lyrics you could pick up on the fact this is about a girl who is infatuated with this guy. Nothing faulted Sankey’s vocal performance. Excellent song to end an amazing set.

SET LIST

Welcome To Condale
Last American Virgin
Round The Moon
Down
Done Forever
Always
Life
Losing My Mind
Ghost Train
Better Off Without You
I Want You

Spector are a five-piece indie rock band from London,which comprise of Frederick Macpherson (vocals), Christopher Burman (guitar), Thomas Shickle (bass), Jed Cullen (synth, guitar) and Danny Blandy (drums). “Bon soir mother fuckers, hashtag #thehashtag. We’re Spector from London, England here to ruin your Field Day. This is a song What You Wanted, I hope it’s just that” Macpherson said the moment that they took to the stage. What I was about to witness would be a humorous roller coaster ride. The band opened up with What You Wanted. They all looked dapper in their tailored suits. I found this song to be rather rampant and the lyrics were rather energetic. “What’s up? What’s good? I know what you’re thinking you wish you were at Grimes. I know how that feels. We’re here to hopefully take your Field Day from a 6/10 to a 7/10. At least a 6 and a ½. I see you in The Vaccines T shirt. Security. Right this is a song about partying or trying to party” Fred then said to the crowd. There is no denying that Macpherson is extremely funny. It was then onto the wonderful Friday Night, Don’t Ever Let It End. This song has a furious pace and its lyrics were catchy. I can pick up on traces of Brandon Flowers and The Vaccines. “How is everyone? Are you getting your moneys worth from your ticket price? I remember in the late 80’s when Tom Baker the guy who started this festival. He came to me and said Fred I’ve had a vision cool bands man in like a park in East London. I said it’s never going to work but here I am onstage he’s proved me wrong. He was right, I was wrong. Cool bands in the park. For one night only. I’m literally having a Field Day” Macpherson said before dedicating it to all the mums and dads in the house. Grey Shirt & Tie was played at a steady pace and it was in fact the last of the trilogy of singles on Luv Luv Luv.  It was then onto Twenty Nothing which will feature on the debut album. This song was rather strong and also had a furious pace. Every ounce of energy was put into this upbeat number. “That’s a new song off our album Enjoy It While It Lasts which has been delayed to August by popular demand. I want to big up all the audience members, I see you out there are you still with us? Who’s excited about Franz Ferdinand, The Vaccines, Sleigh Bells. You could be seeing Grimes, you could have been seeing Metronomy, you could have been seeing Julio Bashmore. What can I say you made the wrong decision” Fred said before launching into a song he hoped we all knew and this being Celestine. This track was very sleek and also the instruments played (guitar, drums) gave it that extra energetic edge. “I want to big up all the UK musicians out there right now. Field Day whose everyone watch, whose playing, what time are the Stereophonics on? I want to big up everyone on the Laneways Lateways festival stage today. There’s a lot of bands out there just trying to do there thing trying to get by and this is a song that has absolutely nothing to do with that” Fred then said before saying Lay Low was for all the ladies in the house. I actually found this tune to be swooning and the tempo had been taken down a couple of notches. “We took the tempo down for you there. This is a song called Chevy Thunder enjoy” Macpherson then said. I won’t lie but the thunderous Chevy Thunder drew plenty of crowd participation. It was also a crowd pleaser as well. This song was delivered with bundles of energy and at the same time it was really infectious. Dev Hynes played the guitar for this song and once over Fred jokingly called him a medium guitarist. “We’re having our time cap, apparently people don’t want to hear me talking shit for hours between songs” Macpherson said before signing off with the beautiful song Never Fade Away. It was actually quite poignant as Spector are a band that will never fade away.

SET LIST

What You Wanted
Friday Night, Don’t Ever Let It End
Grey Shirt & Tie
Twenty Nothing
Celestine
Lay Low
Chevy Thunder
Never Fade Away

Around 7.45pm American noise pop band Sleigh Bells brought their Reign Of Terror to th Laneaways Festival stage. I have been a fan since 2010 where I saw them play at Rough Trade East. Sleigh Bells consisted of Derek E. Miller and Alexis Krauss. Joining them on tour was Jason Boyer. The set opened up with True Shred Guitar which was extremely short in length. “How you doing Field Day” Alexis said the moment the song start. True Shred Guitar was a song to get the crowd hyped up. The atmosphere from the very start was electric. Plus it was rather loud as the trio were playing in front of about 12 Marshall amps. The first song of the set was Crown On The Ground taken from the début release Treats. Everyone around me was loving this song chanting away to the infectious lyrics. Crown On The Ground had a beat to it and it sounded incredible. “Hey Field Day, I want to see you clap to the beat” Krauss said to the packed crowd before Infinity Guitars. You then had everyone clapping in unison. This was a short song which consisted of only two verses. Still it was delivered strongly. “Alright London, you guys have always been good to us” Alexis said before telling everyone to dance with her. It was then onto Kids. I rather liked this song. It is energetic plus it has a thumping beat. It was then onto the beautiful End Of The Line which had an epic melody. End Of The Line was a dance pop ballad. “Thank you guys so much for coming out like this to see us” Krauss said before revealing that they had played double the amount of shows here compared to New York. It was then onto another song from Reign Of Terror and this being Born To Lose. The lyrics to this powerful song were amazing while the guitar riffs were extraordinary. Tell ‘Em was played immediately after. This crowd pleaser was very in your face. Alexis’s vocals were sublime and gentle but the thumping melody did slightly overshadow things. Comeback Kid which was the lead single from Reign Of Terror followed on. This song was belted out plenty of energy was going into it which created a brilliant performance. “Show me what you’ve got” Krauss said just as Riot Rhythm started. I wont lie but this is one of my favourite tracks from this band. The audience was going crazy and there was plenty of crushing from people wanting to get to the front barrier. I thought the lyrics to this song were superb, it is infectious and you just want to put your fist in the air. “We’ve got 2 more songs, so show me what you’ve got” Alexis said before penultimate song. Demons. Again this was a thumping tune and this performance was simply electric. The lyrics of A/B Machines consisted of, “Got my A machines on the table/ Got my B machines in the drawer” repeated over and over. Still it sounded incredible and every member of the crowd enjoyed this final song.,

SET LIST

True Shred Guitar
Crown On The Ground
Infinity Guitars
Kids
End Of The Line
Born to Lose
Tell ‘Em
Comeback Kid
Riot Rhythm
Demons
A/B Machines

The Vaccines are an English indie rock band who formed in West London in 2010. This 4 piece consist of Justin Young, Árni Hjörvar, Freddie Cowan and Pete Robertson. This group are really talented and this was the first time I had witnessed them live. I knew who they were but I wouldn’t call myself a massive fan. Judging from what was showcased that may well and truly change. The Vaccines showcased 10 out the 11 tracks from debut album What Did You Expect From The Vaccines as well as 3 brand new ones which will no doubt feature on the forthcoming sophomore EP. There wasn’t a lot of banter during this 50 minute set, it was all about the playing. And they can play. What I witnessed was something truly epic, the crowds atmosphere was electric. There was plenty of crushing and the occasional crowd surfer at the same time. The tent was literally ram packed and what was delivered was a blistering 14 song set which started with the brand new single No Hope and then ended with the crowd pleasing Norgaard. The thing that makes The Vaccines stand out is the fat they can write fantastic songs even if they are really short (an example of this can be Wreckin’ Bar which is under 90 seconds long). They may be a indie rock but but I would say they are more rock than indie. The new songs on the night included the upbeat new single No Hope, Teenage Icon and Bad Mood all of which made the thought of the new album even more mouth watering. Literally everyone in the tent were rocking out to The Vaccines and it was good to hear songs such like Post Break Up Sex, Tiger Blood, If You Wanna, Blow It Up and Norgaard played live. I was extremely pleased with myself that I stuck to the barrier throughout the set as there was a lot of people trying to get to the barrier plus there was crushing.

SET LIST

No Hope
Wreckin’ Bar
Tiger Blood
A Lack Of Understanding
Wetsuit
Teenage Icon
Under Your Thumb
Post Break Up Sex
All In White
Wolf Pack
Blow It Up
If You Wanna
Bad Mood
Norgaard

Once over people around me were hoping for an encore due to them being the headline band. But I knew this wouldn’t be forthcoming as nothing was written on the set list. So once my friend and I gathered our bearings we then left the tent with the intention we would see Franz Ferdinand play on the main stage. Only this didn’t happen, we chose to make a quick getaway instead. The reason being it was pouring down with rain. We then both left the premises and made the journey to the tube station.

OVERALL: This was my 2nd ever field day and I rather enjoyed it. Yes it did rain but it didn’t dampen my spirits as I was just in the one place. There were other bands I wanted to see play (i.e Grimes, Jessie Ware) but I couldn’t have it all. I was extremely happy with what I witnessed. Summer Camp, Blood Orange, Sleigh Bells, Spector and The Vaccines were all top class. Also I must add in Kindness. I may of not mentioned them in this review but the set they played was simply electric.
I was left slightly disappointed with the fact no food or drink was allowed onto the site. If you pay £50 for a ticket you wouldn’t really think you would have to fork out more money. Plus it was the only festival I have been to that has had a ban on food and drink (I have attended V, Reading, Wireless, Lovebox and even Field Day 2009 with no problem!!).

Would I attend again? My answer would be a yes but they would have to change their policy.

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