V Festival 2009 – Gold Coast

It has been a very long time since I have been to a music festival for the music. I usually go for a good day with good friends with the added bonus of good music. So naturally, it has been a while since I have enjoyed a music festival as much as I enjoyed V Fest this year.

I was reminded how much 'nicer' V Fest is compared to other festivals. Their addition of more 'old school' bands usually leads to a very mixed crowd that works very well. And while there are still your regiments of Dickheads, security does a remarkable job of controlling them. Not too mention all the social sanctioning – very impressive V-Fest-Goers. I also felt that this year they finally got the toilet-to-festival-goer ratio just about right. And the toilets were so well maintained! Not a single one ran out of toilet paper!! But the toilets were just one small (although significant) part of what made the festival so fab. What made it fab were . . . 

Duffy!

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The beautiful Welsh Blonde Bombshell and a little lady with a very big voice. What can I say? She was an utter delight to see live. She played in the early afternoon, which was the absolute perfect time to get your Duffy groove on. And while at one point I was madly applying another round of sunscreen to my not-so-sun-smart-self, my groove on I did get. Most fabulous! 

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(Please Note: my complete and and utter lack of sun-smartness. What is coming over me in my old age? Photo courtesy of the Luscious Lindsay)


Elbow!


Okay, I have only very, very recently been introduced to this amazing band. Indeed, I have known of them for only a week. But oh, what a week! It was strongly recommended that I see these guys live and I was not disappointed. I think my friend said it best when he said "Any band that enters the stage with three trumpets and bugle, automatically win my respect". The moment for me was when the lead introduced a song with the statement "This is the song I wrote the day after I fell in love, with the woman I am in love with". And then he played the song I have been obsessing over all week (Mirrorball). And oh! My heart!! She sighed and then swooned. And then I had eye contact moments with the lead during the song, which was only slightly uncomfortable (usually I find this very uncomfortable). Needless to say, I went out and bought their album today.
Snow Patrol!

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Sigh. These guys really are my band. And they were the reason I attended the festival. These guys have been with me through my early twenties for all my silly crushes, bad share house experiences and have travelled the world with me. And it was so wonderful to finally see them live. They were the first band I have ever seen dedicate most, if not all of their songs to the other acts of the day, and do it genuinely. A reflection, I think, of lil' Gary L's love of all things music. A love I know of as an occasional reader of his not-so-frequently updated, but wonderful blog. I tell ya, when a performer loves what they are doing and the world they are a part of it really is felt by the audience.

I staked out a very comfortable possie near the front of the stage and was happily situated with the other 'die-hards'. Another thing I love about V – you can be right down the front (to the side) for one of the headlining bands, and still have space to rock out. And rock out I did. You know, I can't remember the last band I saw where I knew all of the words to all of the songs – I think it may have been as far back as Regurgitator, which was, well, in high school. And you can just imagine how excited I got when the second song they played was one of my most favourite songs – Chocolate. I have never really been able to articulate why I love this song so much. It just speaks to me.

Earlier in the day I had mused that it would be cool if at some point during Snow Patrol it would rain. The combination of rain and music I love is a very special thing for me. I think it's a Bollywood Thing. That, and the fact that I am a stupidly hopeless romantic. And, well, it started raining. And then they played Chasing Cars. And no shit, it was one of the most beautiful moments in this little life-o-mine thus far. It was a total travesty that I had no one to share it with, but at the same time it was oddly appropriate. And yes, being the big sook that I am, I nearly cried. I nearly cried again later during Open Your Eyes as the song built up. I think I was still reeling from the rain and the Chasing of the Cars (it had stopped raining at this point).

Clearly seeing Snow Patrol was a bit emotional for me, and my reactions were certainly a first as far as my live-band experiences go. I walked away in a fuzzy haze of contentment, which can only be a good thing.

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(anticipating Snow Patrol – and would you believe there is a substantial amount of vodka in that slush puppie? It was like drinking a really big Cruiser. This was not actually a good thing)

After Snow Patrol, things were a little blurry. By all accounts the Kaiser Chiefs and the Killers kicked bottom. There was another special rain moment during the Killers when it started pelting down. I remember thinking that if they played Mr. Brightside (the only Killers song I really give a damn about) I would just about lose it. And then they played Mr. Brightside. And me, and several thousand people totally lost it. It was pretty friggin' awesome. Although fifteen minutes later when the festival finished, the cold, wet reality of the rain sank in.

And here we are, wet, bedraggled and waiting for shuttle buses.

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All in all, a most fabulous day!

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