The annual pilgrimage of Australian music fans has ended once again after the sixteenth annual Splendour in The Grass Festival took place at North Byron Parklands last weekend.
This year the weather gods provided rays of sunshine over the music faithful who were basking in the music, art, craft and food that was on offer over the three days, leaving the gumboots at the tent site was sure a great feeling.
The lineup of over 100 acts played to a capacity crowd of over 32,000 across four main stages, but the most iconic venue and where we spent most of our time was The Amphitheater with acts like The Avalanches and The Cure being clear crowd favourites.
On Thursday night we arrived and got the lay of the land as every year something new and exciting is added to the mix. This year was no exception with three new spaces, the World Stage within the Global Village area, the Indian-inspired Marigold Majestic and the Very Small Suburb that brought some of Australia’s favourite food and fashion to Byron.
On Friday The Kills made a triumphant return to Splendour off the back of a new album and Alison Mosshart ruled our world, Mansfield (4122) legends Violent Soho conquered a packed Amphitheatre and Leon Bridges pulled a capacity crowd to the GW McLennan Tent and then pulled out a cover of Pony by Ginuwine. Then all eyes were on the Amphitheatre stage as The Avalanches made their first Australian festival appearance in 16 years and The Strokes brought the night to a close with a set of hits.
On Saturday the locals ruled. Gang of Youth’s Dave Leaupepe showed everyone how it’s done with an epic set complete with confetti cannons and mega sing-alongs. King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard were raaaawkus personified, and Sticky Fingers pulled one of the biggest crowds of the day. At The Drive-In schooled the masses in how it’s done, with a mesmerising set of anarchic punk. Then one of the world’s true musical icons, Robert Smith and his band The Cure, played a monumental three-hour set to an adoring crowd.
Sunday kicked off with triple j unearthed legends Tired Lion and Gold Class who set the tone for the day. With encouragement from Melbourne Ska Orchestra’s Nicky Bomba, the crowd danced so hard that they created a dust storm. Brissie boys The Jungle Giants pulled such a massive crowd to their set that it spilt far away from the GW McLennan Tent. Trailblazer James Blake played an atmospheric game and Sigur Rós closed the GW McLennan Stage in their unique cinematic style.
In a festival fairytale Harley Streten aka Flume, who first attended Splendour as most people do – a music loving punter – headlined the Amphitheatre and attracted the biggest crowd of the weekend. Go Harley
But now once again our Splendour pilgrimage has come to an end we packed our cars a little dusty set back for work a day late but with plenty of stories from another exciting year at Splendour In The Grass.
We heard some buzz about getting in and out of the festival but that is to be expected and what we say to those people is next year, pack your patience as the whole event is like a mini city with everyone on the move and plan ahead and go with the flow.
So we will see you again next year Splendour faithful with our old mate Steve The Pineapple