[Photo: Cody Alexander]
Gold coast Parklands once again played host to the Good Vibrations Festival and all its followers this February. The party had already begun before the gates opened; with crowds of revellers sipping away on their hip flasks and discussing their plans of attack for the day ahead.
With the gates open the party officially kicked off with a cruisy set from the aptly named Cool Calm Collective on the Roots stage. Continuing the relaxed start to the day were Tijuana Cartel on the main stage where a large crowd gathered, in all their costumed glory, to witness a set that evolved from an impressive acoustic flamenco demonstration to a full blown aussie hip-hop act. Such a diverse act couldn’t have been more appropriate for such a diverse and amped crowd; leaving everyone buzzing in anticipation for Bluejuice.
Meanwhile, back at the roots stage, Afro Dizzi Act took to the stage with yet another cruisy set; perfect for appeasing the masses arriving late whom might otherwise have missed out on a nice relaxed start to a big day.
Over at the Laundry stage Kid Kenobi was ripping it up on the decks for a crowd who’d skipped the transitional “relaxed to amped acts” and had jumped straight into the house/techno state of mind helped along by what would prove to be a popular mix for the day; The Bloody Beetroots ‘Warp 1.9’ featuring Steve Aoki. Should The Bloody Beetroots decide to show their masked faces at this festival next year then they can be guaranteed a very warm welcome.
By the time Bluejuice graced the crowd with their presence back at the main stage the crowd was well and truly ready for a party thanks to DJ Agent 86’s mixes in between sets. Bluejuice didn’t disappoint; providing an athletic performance complete with comical facials which provided the photographers in the pit with a wealth of photographic opportunities. Unsurprisingly Bluejuice’s biggest hit for the day was Vitriol; getting the crowd screaming, chanting and crowd surfing all the way back to the Roots stage where Sampology was mixing some sweet house music in sync to some spellbinding graphics.
It was now about three in the afternoon and the last of the stragglers had made it into the festival just in time for Art vs Science. With the close of another brilliant mix from DJ Agent 86 came a roar of screams and unsuppressed excitement as Art vs Science’s keyboards and drums burst to life and encouraged their crowd to not only use their flippers to get down but to dance, swim , clap and get happy with their flippers. Their adoring crowd were all too happy to oblige and made the Art vs Science set one of the most successful of the day.
If rock/pop music wasn’t your thing then you might have skipped the Art vs Science set and headed to the Roots stage where Kid Cudi had drawn a loyal and excitable crowd. Up the front the crowd were in hysterics as their favourite rapper delivered hits such as Day and Night, Man on the Moon and the Pursuit of Happiness. It was obvious Kid Cudi was as blown away with his crowd as they were by him and the entire set was a delightful example of an artist feeding on the energy of his/her crowd.
Speaking of ‘feeding off the energy of one’s crowd’; the energy back at the main stage couldn’t have been more electric as thousands gathered for Salt-n-Pepa’s much anticipated show. Salt-n-Pepa, accompanied by none other than Spinderella and the Salt-n-Pepa Shakers, exploded onto the main stage; playing, flirting and serenading what was by far the most diverse crowd for the day. Seventies, eighties and nineties babies alike ‘pushed it real good’, ‘shooped’ and ‘talked about sex’ until exhaustion set in. ‘Mighty good men’ were celebrated as were womanisers thanks to some ‘man bashing’ lyrics. Salt-n-Pepa were successful in drawing the biggest crowd for the day and had everyone singing and body popping along to their classic 90’s hip-hop.
Pop was back on the menu following everyone’s trip down memory lane with Gossip setting the stage on fire with the hit ‘Pop Goes the World’. Big girls and little girls alike (not to mention the men in the crowd) were in awe of Beth Ditto as she showed everyone how to ooze sexual energy. With unabashed confidence and much heckling from the crowd; Ditto stripped down into her underwear and dished up some mighty tracks such as ‘Heavy Cross’, ‘Love Long Distance’ and ‘Standing in the way of Control’. Not a punter was left standing without a smile on their face or a swagger in their walk following the Gossip’s ‘wholesome’ performance. Beth Ditto also left with more than she’d arrived with after the crowd followed suit and proceeded to throw their clothing on stage for her to take home with her.
Nobody dared venture too far from the stage following Gossip’s set; in preparation for Basement Jaxx’s appearance on the main stage. Once again, a diverse crowd of young and old put on their costumes and dancing shoes and packed themselves like sardines in front of the stage. In green cloaks Basement Jaxx’s divas accompanied a lone guitarist on stage creating so much tension and anticipation within the crowd that when they finally did unveil themselves in Elizabethan inspired attire their singing drowned out by the screams of thousands of loyal fans. Living up to their reputation Basement Jaxx delivered hit after hit, each so different from the last not to mention to countless costume changes; all of which varied as much as the music. If you’ve never been witness to a Basement Jaxx concert then you’re most definitely missing out. ‘Oh my Gosh’, ‘Bingo-Bango’ and ‘Where’s Your Head At’ will have you jumping and dancing like a fool!
Once again, if what the main stage was offering wasn’t your cup tea then you might have been back at the roots stage enjoying some of the best ‘Old Skool’ RNB on offer courtesy of Busta Rhymes. If you thought the crowd couldn’t get more hysterical than at Kid Cudi then you’d be wrong. Busta Rhyme packed the roots stage to the rafters and then some. With girls being plucked from the front of the crowd; over come before the show had even started; you knew it was going to be good. With a whole lotta crotch grabbing, gangsta speak and hangin at the club references Busta Rhyme treated Good vibrations to classics such as ‘Break Your Neck’, Fire It Up’ and ‘Gimme Some More’. With the closing of his set came the end of the Good Vibrations 90’s experience; and what an experience it was!
Stepping forward a decade or so and the masses had gathered to celebrate what had been a festival experience to remember back at the main stage with none other than The Killers! The stage was set; quite literally with roses, palm trees and reflective instruments and then on came a band which is perhaps one of the biggest acts in the world right now. Punters that had positioned themselves at the front of the stage ALL DAY were finally rewarded. Hit after hit after hit poured over the Good vibes crowd at Parklands with ‘All these Things I’ve Done’ being the most popular. Everyone at The Killers set, whether a big fan or not, knew they were witnessing a set they’d be bragging to their kids about one day and participating in a snippet of rock history.
All in all Good Vibrations was a friendly and fun festival with a fantastic line-up. Everyone seemed to be keeping an eye out for each other and one was never without a dancing partner!
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