Festival Review: Future Music – Channel [V] Website

Originally posted on [V] Website

It didn’t take too long at Randwick Racecourse on Saturday to figure out I might not fit in as your typical Future Music Festival attendee. Both my shoulders and the entirety of my buttocks were fully hidden by clothing (prude!), my pupils maintained at the appropriate size at all times and not once did I utter the phrase “Yeeeeeeew”! Happily in the minority I steeled myself in preparation for a day amongst the munted masses, hoping some sweet live tunes would get me through it unscathed.

Rita Ora
After having been sidelined from the Perth edition of the festival last weekend Rita returned to the Future stage, her voice as solid and intact as ever, having told that throat infection to fuck right off. The British pop-star must have powered through some Lemsip this week because she perfectly belted out every note as she surged through her hits to a sizeable early crowd happily partaking in equal amounts of both “Party and Bullshit”.

Bringing their full live experience to Australia for the first time, British electronic outfit Rudimental started their set with some mellower sounds, taking punters who might only know the band from their drum and bass singles by surprise. Song-recognition was definitely not at an all-time high and the crowd was fairly subdued for the most part, at least until ‘Not Giving In’ finally stirred a response. The amazing vocal interplay and chill vibes of ‘Spoons’ slowed things down a bit before the Londoners melted minds en masse with an explosive rendition of ‘Feel The Love’ to close the set.

You know what rhymes with Psy? Why. As in why the fuck is the creator of the eternally painful ‘Gangnam Style’, a YouTube “sensation” from eight months ago, appearing on an Australian music festival line-up? The ultimate novelty inclusion, Psy took the stage in a white sleeveless suit looking equally as bewildered as I was and apologised for his presence with a short monologue on the nature of fame or something… I wasn’t really listening. Flanked by the requisite K-Pop dance troupe, Psy performed two new songs nobody cared about and then the most-watched YouTube song of all time twice. TWICE. To be honest, the main thing I experienced watching this ridiculous set was sympathy for the man. You could actually see another small part of his soul die as he horsey-danced across the stage for the bazillionth time. Dancing for us like a monkey in a circus. DANCE FOR THE PEOPLE, PSY! DANCE!

Steve Aoki
Watching Steve Aoki’s set, it occurred to me the man probably should have considered a less stationary career than DJ. Spending most of his time in front of, on top of or pretty much anywhere but the decks, Aoki jumped about the stage like an ADHD kid who just sculled red cordial. All the hallmarks of his famously fun sets were present; champagne showers, inflatables, fire extinguishers and stage dives and the non-stop electro/house tunes worked the massive crowd into a chaotic frenzy of effed-up camels. After a bitter-sweet dedication to recently passed DJ and friend Ajax, Aoki crowd surfed the entirety of the mosh and finished his day with a soaring leap of our very own [V] Stage Dive.

Dizzee Rascal
Shirtlessness was at an all-time high as the sun began to set on Randwick and the now dirt-covered, sun-drenched masses surged towards the main stage to see everyone’s favourite English rascal. My favourite thing about Dizzee Rascal is if you ever have a brain aneurysm mid-song and forget who you’re listening to, chances are you’ll be reminded fairly quickly by him announcing “it’s Dizzee Rascal”. So that’s handy. Dizzee certainly had plenty of people to dance wiv, with the overflowing horde of ravers being educated on the benefits of being addicted to dirty, stinking bass as opposed to hard drugs. You hear that kids? Drugs = bad. Bass = good. (Channel [V] encourages the responsible listening to bass music. Remember to always bass in moderation).

The Prodigy
Back when I was a tiny human I remember watching the music video for The Prodigy’s ‘Breathe’. That shit gave my seven-year-old self such bad nightmares Mum banned me from watching Rage for like, years. Well guess what, Mother, I’M AN ADULT NOW AND YOU CAN’T TELL ME WHAT TO DO ANYMORE. With a rebellious air and a conviction to overcome my bed-wetting past I entered the ripe-smelling Warriors Dance Arena to end the night with my old pals The Prodigy.

If anyone on the Future Music line-up knows their way around a festival show, it’s the lads from The Prodigy. Opening with a particularly violent rendition of ‘Voodoo People’ and not letting up for a second, the tight, aggressive set saw hit after hit punched out to the pulsating throng of filthy, manic punters. ‘Breathe’ and ‘Omen’ had the biggest sing-along moments with Keith and Maxim’s famous crowdsmanship inspiring the biggest response of the day. The set also featured a unique moment where everyone’s favourite shit-stirrer Azealia Banks took some time away from starting fights with every other musician, and joined The Prodigy boys on stage for a duet version of ‘Firestarter’. I’ll let her tweet describe how it went: “@AZEALIABANKS: YAAAAAAAASSSSSS !!!!!!”. Easily the highlight of the day The Prodigy proved 20+ years of raving hasn’t diminished their sound one bit, and me not getting scared at all proved I’m a big boy now. You hear that, Mum?

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