My first music festival in over a decade – BDO 2013

I must admit, the closer that it got – the more I started to wonder whether I was going to enjoy the Big Day Out. The heat, the crowds, people sweating and screaming all around me, endless queues for drinks, food, the toilet… there were a lot of negatives piling up for an old fogey like me. I imagined myself sitting on the sidelines, watching bands from afar and sedately enjoying the atmosphere.

But no, within no time at all I was straight into it – jumping around in the moshpit, screaming out lyrics and clumsily photographing/videoing as many bands as I could. I’ve heard that the Big Day Out has been winding down over the past few years, not drawing the crowds and levels of attention it used to get. Well on the day – you wouldn’t have known it. Hundreds of people screaming until they were raw at first glimpse of the band coming on-stage, singing every song word-for-word and dancing like no one was watching – it was amazing, and completely packed out. I’d forgotten how considerate and community-minded music fans could be en masse, good live music seems to have the power to bring everyone together.

My personal highlight for the day was the Killers, not only was their set amazing – but their stage effects rocked! I was also grateful to have caught 360, the Bloody Beetroots (damn those boys are talented – I thought it was all electronics!), Vampire Weekend, some of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, Gary Clark Jr, a little Grinspoon, some of the Medics, some others I’m not sure of the names of, and of course – the Chili Peppers. Watching a band I’ve been listening to since primary school, playing some of their most iconic songs and with every person around me singing along as well – I hope I never forget it.

Apart from being a bit bummed that I missed Hunting Grounds, overall it was an exhilarating 11-hour day and an extremely well organised event. Am now keener than ever for Soundwave next month!