As the final day of the All Points East/Field Day spectacle that graced Victoria Park over Bank Holiday weekend, Monday’s weather was gloomier than that of days before; the sun taking a break from shining down on festival-goers and a foggy haze standing in its place.
However, the weather did nothing to prevent crowds from streaming through the gates of Victoria Park. Buzzing with energy and excitement, for many, this was one of the first festival experiences possible since Covid took over from real life a year and a half ago.
Monday’s festival lineup consisted of an extensive variety of artists, including the likes of Flyte, Liz Lawrence, Caribou, and Jade Bird, with indie icons Foals and Bombay Bicycle Club headlining the two main stages.
Rising star Olivia Dean had the honour of opening the West Stage, performing such ditties as 2020’s ‘Crosswords’, as well as delving further back into the archives for the title track of her debut EP ‘OK Love You Bye’.
The brilliant Arlo Parks delighted a hefty crowd over on the East Stage, her second set of the weekend proving to be nothing short of mesmerising. With the stage adorned in sunflowers, Arlo’s poetic masterpieces were perfectly complimented by her band, the musical collective coming together just beautifully. ‘Caroline’ was a certain fan-favourite, while final track ‘Hope’ left the crowd in awe.
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The Magic Gang’s set on the blue-tipped North Stage consisted of everything you’d expect from the perfectly poised indie quartet: catchy riffs, an excitable crowd and consecutive banger after banger. The tent essentially full to the brim, it’s safe to say The Magic Gang still know how to successfully woo their audience.
One of the only downfalls of the festival turned out to be the lengthy queues for eateries and toilets around the site. It was sadly the suspected norm to wait almost an hour for overpriced hot dogs and chips; but should we expect anything more from a festival in 2021?
As the sun started to set, Bombay Bicycle Club took to their headline slot on the West Stage. The band’s warm and welcoming sound offered the illusion that they’d never been away, opening with 2020’s ‘Eat, Sleep, Wake (Nothing But You)’, before embarking on hits such as ‘Feel’ and ‘Home By Now’. Joined by Rae Morris, the band performed a cover of Selena Gomez’s ‘Lose You To Love Me’, shortly followed by their own ‘Luna’. Bombay Bicycle Club well and truly finished on a high, as the London School Of Samba were welcomed on stage for a spectacular rendition of ‘Always Like This’.
With just 15 minutes in between headliners, crowds didn’t have much time to get over to the East Stage for Foals, with the opening twangs of ‘The Runner’ sounding out as fans were left still desperately venturing from stage to stage.
However, Foals were nothing short of impeccable when it came to their performance. Ever-reliable when it comes to putting on a show like no other, the Oxford-originating quartet didn’t disappoint, mixing live favourites such as ‘Olympic Airways’ with the likes of brand new, yet-to-be-released track, ‘Novo’. Despite witnessing multiple sound complaints in the days post-festival, this was seemingly dependent on crowd placement during the set itself, the band failing to show any sign of difficulties throughout. A fiery finish came in the form of the classic ‘Two Steps Twice’, which saw the crowd pop on their dancing shoes and revel in the feeling of the final return of live music.
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Words: Samantha Hall
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