Some feelings I felt at St Jerome's Laneway Singapore
It might be in another country but Laneway still has the magic.
Header photo via hoto: Rueven Tan/Chugg Entertainment
St Jerome's Laneway festival just rounded up its Singapore and Auckland shows last weekend, and we had a man there to cover it, who asides from seeing acts like Flume and The Internet also sweated enough to turn his passport into paper mache.
The humidity was insane
90-95% humidity with an average of 30 degrees throughtout the day is a killer and that's before you start busting moves out at a festival. Which is saying something considering I've done Australian festivals on 42 degree days. To give you an idea of how soaked I was I had decided to wear a bum bag because being the good son I was I listened to my mum and kept my passport there so they could check my ID when they later asked for it. I then put it away and about five hours later I decided to check my passport only to discover that I had sweated enough for it to soak my passport. Completely through. Whether or not I make it out of Singapore remains to be seen but hey the moral of the story is bum bags fucking suck.
Flume's new live show was great, it just might take a little while to warm to the new songs
With Flume's new live show debuting in Singapore it was interesting to see how he would top the Infinity Prism. What we got was as if Flume had cut the prism in half and placed it facing up with the beams of lights shooting up alongside some insane visuals. I mean you have to hand it to the boffins behind Flume's visuals, they were truly outstanding. However his set left more to be desired. He cleverly cut up the stems of his old songs with new ones so it would chop between what everyone knew and what they didn't. However, the unheard songs sounded more like experimental chops rather than the progressive sounds he has been dropping with Smoke and Retribution and Never Be Like You.
Grimes Is A New Age Pop Princess
Grimes at Singapore Laneway, image via.
To me Art Angels was the culmination of years of gradual sonic steps by Grimes towards being a a new age pop princess. New age because she isn't so much this unapproachable figure but human in the way she'll swear verse mid-way through Realiti explaining she forgets the lyrics before causing the crowd to go berserk for her. It's this raw power coupled with smooth backing vocals of friend Hana and the talent of rapper Aristophanes that made the show. Indeed, one of the highlights was when Aristophanes cruised on stage to power through Scream causing the crowd to go wild.
The festival grounds felt like a world crossed between Avatar and Bladerunner
The setting for Laneway was in Singapore's Garden by The Bays, an artifical garden space created in 2011 and amidst the rolling greens, sky towers and read glowing metallic tree things, there sat the festival. And for a festival space it was pretty special. Especially because of the surrounding city and the eye-catching Marina Bay Sands Hotels which is the three buildings you see in the header photo, interconnected by bridges on which sitting on top them is a series of pools and trees.
The Internet kill it from URL to IRL
But the highlight of the festival was watching the tight-knit and unstoppable group that is The Internet. From the moment they came on stage to sound check and jam out to Thundercat, who was playing before them, everything seemed perfect. On a side note what The Internet also didn't do was censor themselves, unlike Violent Soho who didn't shout their staple, "Hell Fuck Yeah," nor Hermitude who did a PG flip of Kanye West's All Day. Indeed The Internet instead opened their set with, "Now she wanna fuck me," as if they were openly challenging Singapore's no doubt strict language laws placed on the festival. But regardless songs like Palace, Curse, Gabby and of course Girl wooed the crowd into a frenzy maintained through til set's end.
Going Solo Rocks
Also I did all of this solo and you know what? I had a great time and that was for a number of reasons; with sets back to back there was little time to sit around awkwardly wondering what to do, Singaporeans are probably some the kindest people you'll meet. For example I dozed off for part of the day and kept on getting woken up to check if I was okay and when you aren't necking overpriced beer with your mates it really helps the wallet. So if you're tossing up going to a festival solo or a gig because your mates are squares then go and bloody do it, stuff reading all the 'how to gig solo' because if you enjoy music and having a good time the likelihood is you're going to a sweet time.
St Jerome's Laneway rolls around Australia starting this weekend, head to their WEBSITE for more info/tickets.