Packing my bags and being one of the 105,000 lucky people to go to Reading Festival 2019 in the UK, was the best decisions I’ve ever made.
Day one, Friday 23 August 2019 – The element of a mosh surprise.
Everything is new, loud, and a little overwhelming. It was incredible to think a festival can cater to over 100,000 people. But I already expected a massive crowd at Reading Festival 2019. What I didn’t expect was to be moshed down by 16-year-old British girls in crop tops, covered in glitter at The Wombats‘ set.
I was astonished, yet impressed by their desire to mosh to literally any type of music. To quote Hobo Johnson, the phrase for the weekend very quickly became “Open the fucking pit”.
Day one’s bands included Mini Mansions, You Me At Six, The Wombats and Bowling For Soup. The Best Underrated Band award for the weekend goes to Hobo Johnson, whereas the Best Overall Band award has to go to Royal Blood. They played every other band out of the water and me straight into another pit. They were phenomenal!
Fantastic Heard & Seen for Day One:
“I punched the prettiest guy in the face today! To say sorry, I touched his chin. He has a jawline that I can cut my finger on.” (In a very British accent) These girls are not to be messed with.
Day two, Saturday 24 August 2019 – Riding The Hype Blurryfaced.
It is clear to see why Reading Festival is the oldest most famous music festival in the world. Everything from the campsites, the 7 stages, the bars, to the bathrooms, is all well thought out. We never had a problem locating our tents, even though there was 5 different campsites each the size of Oppikoppi. And with such an enormous crowd, I was amazed how quick all the queues went, with an average waiting time of 5 minutes.
I feel the only band that mattered was Twenty One Pilots on Saturday. They included a little Beethoven piece, did an Oasis cover, had security dance on and around the stage, Josh Dunn did backflips, and they ended with fireworks!
Honourable mentions for the day are Boston Manor, The Hunna, Anderson Paak, and Post Malone. Ghostmane wins the Most Mental Shit award with his metal/bass/rap that made people run around in a mosh pit the size of the tent while others climbed the speaker structures.
For everyone who asked, Billie Eilish was dead average live. I understand the appeal to her music, but I don’t get the hype around seeing her perform.
Best Heard & Seen of the day:
People just dropped down in the middle of the crowd and started rowing. The team grew bigger and bigger as more strangers frantically rowed together.
Day three, Sunday 25 August 2019 – Starting with a metal boom.
Sundays are made for sunshine, metal and surprise Bullet For My Valentine sets. Our first taste of loud noises for the day was around 3 AM when aerosol cans exploded by our tent. The people around us started screaming as a group kept on blowing things up. Once again, the British are not to be messed with.
Luckily the sound around us got better during the day. On the bill for the Sunday was, Enter Shikari, Yungblud, Frank Carter & The Rattlesnakes, A Day To Remember and Foo Fighters. I can write a whole article on each of these bands’ sets but to keep it short I’ll describe them using one phrase, ‘Motivational but rough’.
Frank Carter brought his little girl on stage to sing a song to her while riling up the crowd. He then apologised to his mom for swearing too much and dedicated “I Hate You” to Boris Johnson.
There was also an all-female pit for the ladies to feel safe while Frank spoke up about sexual assault. As he stood close to the overexcited crowd, he got splashed saying: “I hope that was only dirty warm water that hit my face”.
With Bullet For My Valentine‘s sneaky surprise set nostalgia quickly became my best friend, and I can now proudly say I’ve seen them cover Foo Fighters.
The Foo Fighters had an eventful three-hour set to finish the Main Stage for the weekend. A fan decided to climb one of the speaker structures, that was about 25 to 30 metres up. The brave man lit up a flare while enjoying his beer and view.
Last Heard & Seen for the weekend:
A 16-year-old guessed we’re from Durban but had no idea who the band was in front of him. It was Foo Fighters. How he knew where Durban is but didn’t know who Foo Fighters are baffled me.
I went for the line-up but was impressed by so much more. Every minute of Reading Festival 2019 was worth it! You can listen to all the bands we saw on Spotify under Razzling Dazzling Ready For Reading.
Watch this space for updates in the Music category on Running Wolf’s Rant.