Festival: Hackney Weekend Review

Rascals, machines, umbrella(ella, ella, ella)s and Jessie J jealousy… 

Tor Cameron takes on Radio 1’s Hackney Weekend last Sunday. 

After a rainy start to the morning the sun came out and blessed a mixed crowd to a warm day of pop music and partying at Hackney Marshes on Sunday. Popping to the shops in Stoke Newington to get supplies around 10am, I noticed plenty of kids looming in their wellies and Sunday best, no one appearing over the age of 20. This was going to be a FUN day!

Being a little older than the average punters, we opted for a few hours of prep time at home and arrived fashionably late around 3pm. We missed Santigold and Bombay Bicycle Club who I would’ve liked to see but hey, free festival, right?! We first indulged my boyfriends crush by watching a bit of Jessie J, she was actually pretty good, has a great voice, worked the crowd etc. Didn’t stop me from flashing daggers as the boy went on about how hot she is….anyhoo…Also, note to dude with large obnoxious umbrella, IT WASN’T EVEN RAINING. Thanks.

Moving on to drop some friends at Sub Focus while we went to use THE CLEANEST FESTIVAL TOILETS I’VE EVER EXPERIENCED! A highlight in itself and no queues, we then went on to see my highlight of the day, Azealia Banks at the 1Xtra Stage. This girl has some serious ‘tude. Loved it, crowd went mental for 212, we shouted and danced like angry teenagers (with all the angry teenagers) then moved on to meet some friends back at the Hackney Weekend sign. Handy meeting point.

They had been at Maverick Sabre who were awesome on all accounts, we now took some down time to see Friction at the nearby outdoor DJ stage. Glorious, glorious sunshine, it felt like half the festival flocked to this stage and were just stomping it out in the heat. Great moment to look around and see such a mix of people all getting down and having a gay old time. Nice one Hackney!

Some of the chums were up for some Florence and the Machine, not a major fan myself but BOY CAN SHE BELT OUT SOME SOUND! We sat on the grass and had some greasy awful festival food. The food situ was actually a bit lacking compared to some other festivals I’ve been to, there was one vegetarian/vegan stall but the line was massive so I ended up with a dodgy fajita and some jerk chicken (see Rihanna paragraph below).

Back at the “In New Music We Trust” stage for some Magnetic Man and a bit of Chasing Status, crowd getting very dancey and bouncy now. At 7.30pm we headed back to the Main Stage to find out who the special guest would be. SQUEAL! Would it be Drake to perform with RiRi? Maybe Kanye would do a longer gig after his cameo with Jay-Z on Saturday? Or, shudder, would the rumours of Cheryl Cole come to fruition (special guest issit)? OHAI Dizzy Rascal! You could see the crowd divide into those who considered this a “Special Guest” and those who saw this as sloppy seconds. Our grouped mainly formed the latter. Sorry, but if you fill a lineup with big international acts and new talent, a long time festival favourite doesn’t seem all too “special”…ANYWAY, free festival, can’t complain so I shan’t.

Ultimate end to the cheese fest and time to indulge my ULTIMATE girl crush and secret shame top artist on Spotify. Rihanna was brilliant, from the moment Emma and I waved our half eaten jerk chicken bones at her until we were shouting out the lyrics to umbrella, I was the happiest girl in the world for that last hour. Nice one RiRi.

As the last act finished it was a controlled and well mannered crowd that surged from the marshes onto the streets of Hackney. Great day had by all, not the kind of music I would usually go to see live in all truth but that was some mega fun. Thanks BBC! YEEEEEP!

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FESTIVAL: Land of Kings

When? Friday 4th and Saturday 5th May 2012

Where? Dalston – various venues

Tickets? A two day pass is a mere £30 and day passes are £20 BUY TICKETS

Website? http://landofkings.co.uk/

Touching down this weekend and exploding itself all over Dalston, the Land of Kings Festival promises an eclectically gig-tastic kick start to the bank holiday weekend. Spanning two days and several venues, the line up showcases local bands, DJs and world class acts.

Included in the expanding line-up are:

Alt country stars, All the Queen’s Ravens

Good time tunes from Moshi Moshi DJs,

Soul, funk, cookin’ disco from Caze Nove

French four piece Femy

Plus LOADS more…

Check out the line up and schedule on their website.

Venues range from the Moustache Bar to the Arcola Theatre & Big Top, Dalston Rooftop Gardens and The Print House right down to The Bunker and Vortex Jazz Bar.

Follow on Twitter https://twitter.com/#!/landofkingsfest

Or Facebook https://www.facebook.com/landofkings

All The Queens Ravens

Twitter @HackneyBubble

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