Underage Festival 2011 Roundup

By on Wednesday, 10th August 2011 at 2:00 pm
 

Editor’s note: The press restrictions at Underage Festival disallowed anyone over the age of 17 to enter the festival grounds. Even members of the press. So it’s a good twist of fate that TGTF just happens to have a writer young enough who could cover the event for us. Take it away, Coco!

Held exclusively for youth, Underage Festival took place at Victoria Park this year like it has since it began in 2007. The day before the festival, it was raining in London. I was really worried about the weather for Underage: really, I suppose no one really wants a festival with rain? Luckily, the rain had stopped and it was sunny all day long.

I arrived at the venue 2 hours prior to the event because I signed up for some volunteer work. After that was done, the gates were open and the excited swarm of young people dashed into Victoria Park. The act that I first saw were Ghost Eyes, they played an early session, at around noon. Having listened to their tracks on their Soundcloud before seeing them, I anticipated ‘They Left’, my favourite track by them. They did play this and a couple more of songs, including their latest single ‘Phantom Mountain’. As a whole, the performance was all right, but the vocals were too soft, to the point that I could hardly hear any!

A while later, I saw Crystal Fighters at 3 PM. I couldn’t stay until the end of the set because Dutch Uncles were playing at quarter past 3 and I wanted to catch them as well. Crystal Fighters were mental. They drove everyone crazy (in a good way). Everybody in the crowd danced like as if it were three in the morning instead of 3 in the afternoon. The sun was bright but that didn’t affect the disco-like atmosphere that filled the air in the main stage. I was really glad that they played ‘I Love London’ within the time I stayed. How cool is it to listen to ‘I Love London’ being played live in London?

I then ran frantically across Victoria Park and arrived at the Artrocker stage for Dutch Uncles’ performance (pictured at top). They mainly played songs from ‘Cadenza’, their new album (Mary’s review here), and only 2 songs (‘Face In’ and ‘Doppleganger’) from their previous releases. My personal high point of their set had to be ‘The Ink’. I was really hoping that the track would get played and my wish came true! Duncan, the vocalist/pianist ended their set by saying “they’d stay around the tent” and the audience could ask them questions if they had any. How sweet!

The next band I saw played at Artrocker stage as well, so that saved me from a lot of leg movement. They were Is Tropical. I previously expressed my love for them in the review of their debut album, ‘Native To’ (read it here). So to me, seeing them live was a big, big bonus. They began their set with ‘Tan Man’, and the crowd grew bigger and bigger as they played on. I was dancing in the crowd with a lady from New York City. However, we were outdanced by two young girls who were in front of us. They went literally crazy and shook their heads as if they were on MDMA or something. I think everyone had a real good time watching Is Tropical, and the performance from the band was breathtaking. (Because we were too busy dancing? That might be the reason!)

Lastly, I saw Bombay Bicycle Club at the main stage. They headlined the festival and played the very last slot. Sad to say, I was somewhat disappointed by them. They weren’t as good as I expected them to be. The crowd enjoyed it nevertheless, and a poor girl blacked out during their set and had to be sent to hospital. I truly hope she was fine afterwards. Bombay Bicycle Club played some songs from their upcoming album as well as some good ol’ favourites.

This was my first festival experience and I loved every single millisecond of it. My thanks go to Jamie and Paul at Zeitgeist Agency who made it possible, Eat Your Own Ears and the Orange Dot for organising it and last but not least, all my friends I met up with who really made the whole day worthwhile.

Coco also chatted with Crystal Fighters, Dutch Uncles and Is Tropical at the festival…so stay tuned for those interviews coming soon on TGTF.

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There Goes The Fear is where we tell you about the latest music, gigs, and tours we love and think you should too.

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