Anyone who has been to Falls Festival knows just how much of an experience it can be. In its 20 years of existence, the music event has boasted acts such as Two Door Cinema Club, Interpol, and the Flaming Lips, and is held at a stunning outdoor getaway only a short drive from Lorne.
With a stellar 2013 lineup that included The Roots, MGMT, and The Wombats, as well as everyone’s favourite indie pop stars Vampire Weekend who brought in the New Year, the festival was guaranteed to be a hit.
Those who arrived at the Falls campsite on the afternoon of day one were unsurprisingly plentiful, and for good reason. The ideal Falls initiation is to set up camp in the afternoon, grab a few beers, smack on a costume for Boogie Nights, and party the first evening away. The hordes of people caused a huge amount of bottlenecking that, despite the inconvenience, simply meant those driving into the site had more time to take in the fantastic rainforest setting.
It was easy to soak up the positive atmosphere whilst walking around the campsite. Whether it was Flume or Vampire Weekend playing from car stereos, or small groups of friends making aluminium foil costumes for the night’s intergalactic theme, it seemed that everywhere was rife with good times.
Hosting the first night’s party was time-travelling DJ Hot Dub Time Machine, who is known for blasting classics from the ’70s right through to modern hits. There was no chance that the gargantuan tent could get any more packed out, so the ‘captain’ (DJ Tom Loud) was in a make or break situation. Luckily for him – and everyone else dancing up a sweat – the crowd reacted fantastically to his song choices. From ‘Eye Of The Tiger’ and ‘Killing In The Name Of’ to the closing ‘Eat Sleep Rave Repeat’, the eclectic nature of the set was just what Falls needed to kick off the party.
Day two, in comparison to the previous day, proved to be much more of a chilled out vibe. In fact, it’s always the second day that Falls truly shows what it has over other Australian festivals.
Upcoming Aussie rockers The Murlocs brought in the afternoon with their unique take on sloppy but easy-to-love rock n’ roll. Their long-haired band members were fearless, performing an energetic and enjoyable set.
No doubt, the best of the evening went to favourites London Grammar. Frontwoman Hannah Reid expressed her doubts about their first Australian tour, saying that they “weren’t sure about the Australian crowd”. But with the biggest audience yet, it was safe to say they were happy with the turnout. The three-piece packed their show with hits such as ‘Strong’, ‘Hey Now’, and ‘Nightcall’. It was perfect from start to finish, with fans singing along to each song.
As the crowd swelled, the night turned into a gigantic field celebration. Aussie favourites Flight Facilities got the festivalgoers moving with a smooth set that featured ‘I Didn’t Believe’, ‘Crave You’, and ‘Clair De Lune’ alongside guest vocalists.
People were so amped for the next act, psychedelic dance rockers MGMT, that it was tough to spot a patch of grass between the hefty crowd. However, the performance received mixed reviews. While some loved every second, others wished the band were more involved with the crowd. Regardless, an extended version of ‘Kids’ as well as ‘Electric Feel’ and ‘Time To Pretend’ kept the celebrations rolling.
The night’s headliners, The Roots, did nothing but amaze. From the looks of things they didn’t care what they were playing, so long as everyone was having an incredible time. The American hip hop act blended covers of Guns N’ Roses and Led Zeppelin songs and played their addictive track ‘The Seed’, all the while amplifying the sound of the crowd. There wasn’t a single moment in the band’s 90-minute set that wasn’t full of energy.