Thursday, August 12, 2010


splendour in the grass now seems like a distant (and very hazy) memory, although it was only a couple of weeks ago. from july 30 - august 1 woodfordia aka splendfourdia in woodford, queensland transformed from a sleepy little venue/cow paddock to a muddy, sweaty, heaving mini-city.

over 30,000 people were crammed into the site and with only one entry and exit point, things started to get interesting.. or boring, depending on your views on how exciting it is to be trapped in a car for six hours.. and so began the logistical nightmare that was splendour in the grass 2010. we left brisbane around 6pm arrived at 1:30am after a detour through caboolture for some much needed mcnuggets and caramel sundaes. the traffic fustercluck proved to be somewhat of a saviour, though - all of our alcohol made it in, un-confiscated by the gate nazis because by the time we arrived they were too tired to be bothered checking cars.

the weather, while absolutely amazing, was also completely terrible - everyone had packed for the cool, wet days we had been experiencing in the weeks leading up to the festival, but little did we know we would arrive in woodford in the midst of a winter heatwave. needless to say, sunburn and sweatiness ensued. and so, with suitcases filled to the brim with winter woolies everyone was united by their hate for unpredictable queensland winters.

day one began with a few celebratory swigs from the jager bowl (a big metal pot filled with jagermeister, red bull and novelty straws) and then it was off to school of seven bells (pretty good although we only caught the end of the show) and then a long hike to the amphitheatre for an amazing performance from yeasayer. woodford's main stage is hands-down the best venue i've been to - akin to brisbane's riverstage only on a much grander scale. the giant hill was a bitch to traverse but it meant you got a good vantage point no matter whether you chose to mosh down the front, dance in the middle, or relax up top. i'm not sure where the rest of the afternoon went but there was definitely an hour or so of spectacular dancing at ibeefa and then all of a sudden my mind re-awoke to find itself in the thick of the mosh pit for black rebel motorcycle club. they were aiight but didn't hold my attention for very long, so it was on to the mix up stage for hot chip and lcd soundsystem.

hot chip put on a surprisingly great show - the tent was packed to overflowing and i didn't see one person who hadn't succumb to the throbbing beat. it was a sweaty, fantastic mess and it only got crazier when james murphy aka lcd soundsystem took to the stage. yeah, there was plenty of energy, but he just didn't seem like he was enjoying himself and to be honest, if i had a bunch of bogans jacked up on amphetamines and vodka red bulls, who were almost too incoherent to yell 'DRUNK GIRLS!!' in time with the music, i would probably be wondering where my life went so wrong, too (it was probably when you sold out tried to replicate the success of daft punk is playing at my house with a song that relies on a very beige catch-cry and probably took you three minutes to write). after giving up on lcd soundsystem, my counterparts and i ended the night on a chilled note, eating nachos at the g.w. mclennan tent and soaking up the sounds of grizzly bear.

highlights: yeasayer + the wasted guy who stumbled into our camping area..waster: "you know when you have a couple of drinks at your neighbour's tent and then you can't find your way home?"

us: "umm.. if they are your neighbour, shouldn't you just have to walk next door to get home"

waster: "i guess so.. but i can't remember where i came from or where my tent is"

us: "okay then.."

waster: *tries to escape but trips over a box of cutlery*

us: *uncontrollable laughing*

we kicked off day two with a bit of two door cinema club followed by delphic - both bands were so much fun and again, the whole crowd was having a whale of a time. by this time, everyone's phone batteries had died and there were a lot of lost souls wandering around woodfordia. usually this would be a cause for panic (helloooo parklife 2010!), but the vibe of the festival was so cool that noone seemed to mind. not even epic sunburn could ruin the perfect mood. i think the magic numbers were next, and then fat freddy's drop who were super cool but whose blissed-out sounds were probably more suited to a sunday afternoon session than saturday night.

unwillingly, we headed into the wolfmother mosh pit to get a good spot for florence and the machine/the strokes. after far too much andrew stockdale and too many bogans rocking out like they were watching the greatest rock band of all time, we had to gtfo and put our time to use by fetching some jumpers from our tentworld. this turned out to be a horrendous idea - apparently we had underestimated the popularity of the headlining bands. the amphitheatre was closed and there was a half-arsed riot (people tried to pull the fences down but got bored after a couple of goes - i guess everyone was in too good a mood to be bothered) so we amscrayed through what was now a ghost town (sorry richard ashcroft) and hustled over to band of horses. even ben bridwell, band of horses' lead singer, told the crowd, "i'd be watching the strokes, too, if i wasn't playing!!", but luckily for the crowd he was playing and he and his entourage did a mighty good job of it. the 'moment' of the evening was definitely the united singalong to the beautiful noone's gonna love you, although i think that might have also been the moment where everyone realised that 'their song' was actually everyone else's, too.. amidst the craziness i managed to catch a couple of songs each from art vs. science (i have it on good authority that they rocked the fuck out) and midnight juggernauts.

highlights: missing out on the strokes 'cause we actually really wanted to see band of horses (a stroke of luck? har har), the giant metal poles in the mix up tent that were reverberating like crazy throughout delphic's bass-heavy set, providing much delight and entertainment.. aaand we saw a four-person-high stack of peeps sitting on each others' shoulders. beat that!

day three was definitely the highlight for me. being the final day of the festival, we got a little enthusiastic with our now-obviously-overstocked alcohol stashes and indulged in a few rounds of totem tennis before popping over to see cloud control. the former triple j unearthed winners proved they were more than worth the title and i even had one over-enthusiastic fan tell me to stop taking photos (i only got two or three) and just watch the performance. i told him where to stick it.

after a trek up to the amphitheatre to catch the end of surfer blood, i made an unsuccessful sojourn to the mo'rockin' wine bar (apparently we told wayyyy too many people to rendezvous there at 3pm because the line was about one hundred kilometres long), then had a killer afternoon dancing to ghetto beats at the chupa chups foam party, discovering a secret garden (which turned out to be the location of choice for stall vendors looking for somewhere to piss) and dancing around to broken social scene.

the most bestest part of the evening was yet to come with an A-MAYYY-ZING performance by a glittering, black cocoon-clad goldfrapp. it's amazing what a head of curly blonde hair and a fan can do for a girl (marilyn monroe, anyone?) and alison goldfrapp absolutely killed all her dance floor anthems (in the best possible way) including oldies like strict machine, train, ride on a white horse, resulting in mass hysteria for all involved. there was one final pilgrimage to the amphitheatre to catch festival headliners, the pixies. by some divine miracle, every person from our tent community, plus a few extras, ended up meeting by chance atop the massive hill - the pixies were awesome but there really is nothing like good company! as you'd expect, where is my mind heralded an epic singalong, along with other anthems such as here comes your man and dig for fire.

i wasn't really ready for the party to be over so we checked out the tipi forest for the first time that week (i may or may not have gotten completely lost looking for it the night before.. and ended up walking around for about three hours before i finally found the way back to my tent) which was being manned by vortex and sampology. it was fun for a while but the sweaty, shirtless dudes got the best of me and i had the shocking realisation that the party was well and truly over.

highlights: littering our camping area with approximately 60 glowsticks/lighting four packets of sparklers to mark the end of the festival. oh, and goldfrapp and the pixies were pretty great, too..

(photos: view from the top of the amphitheatre, the big silver pelvis, babes, black rebel motorcycle club, delphic, the four-high people stack, crazy crowd trying to get into flo-mo/strokes, goldfrapp: the aftermath, chick in a g-string bodysuit, ibeefa by night, bubbles in the afternoon, ibeefa by day, tipi forest, foam party aka i love playing with photoshop)

ps just in case you don't know: you can click on the photos to make them bigger (but maybe don't try the tipi forest photo 'cause it's a bit crap..)


1 comment:

  1. Good run down Jaz! Love that you included the lace g-string bodysuit. Haha.