After the whirlwind of the first day of Reading 2013 which included Bring Me The Horizon and System Of A Down, Rocksins’ intrepid reporter Danni continues her 3 part review of Reading festival 2013 with her view of the Saturday. If you missed part one of her review, you can check it out here.
Saturday captured an altogether, completely different kind of crowd. Gone were most of the rockers, exhausted from their awe-inspired viewing of Bring Me, Skindred and Deftones. In came the explosion of hipster indie kids, all waiting pretty impatiently for Foals and Eminem to grace the main stage, covered in fluorescent face paints and not much else.
The Blackout attempted to grasp onto the remaining strands of the previous day’s crowds, throwing witty Welsh banter to the small audience who gracefully received it as best they could. In the Festival Republic tent, warnings of overcrowding and safety measures were issued as The 1975 stepped onto the stage – a personal highlight of the weekend for me. Their poppy beats may not be for everyone, but even the stragglers who cringed at the mainstream-ness of it all couldn’t help but to dance along to the infectious soon-to-be anthems.
Meanwhile, a favourite among the campsite was King Prawn over on the Lock-Up stage. This ska/punk band lit up the small tent with contagious brass that made it impossible not to jump along to. Over on the main stage, the much-anticipated Foals beamed across the stage, their echoing guitars throwing their way across the cult-like crowd, securing their title as one of the best bands live. Easily an anthem of the 2013 festival season ‘My Number’ went down a treat; together with the sun breaking the crappy but expected rainy morning, it breathed new life into the seemingly dead crowd.
After Foals’ captivating and undeniably uplifting set, I managed to run over to the NME tent just in time to catch ‘Radioactive’, the music-from-a-game-turned-anthem from Imagine Dragons. It was the obvious one everyone was there to see; the tent alighting in a crowd of chanting teenagers who managed to sing the whole first verse alone as loud as their lungs could manage. With a massive extra drum set at the front of the stage, the singer furiously hitting it at every available moment, and with the orchestral fill half way through, it was a highlight for most at the festival. I, however, still think of them as a little pretentious…
Moving swiftly on, Chase and Status were next on my personal line up. I honestly didn’t expect much, but I was more impressed with them than most of the bands I’d seen before them. Their energy, raw excitement and heavy bass lines won me over instantly. I’d always been a fan, don’t get me wrong, I just never expected them to be so good! All eager to see the legend that is Eminem and most, quite probably, so stoned they’d mistake the man opposite for the rapper, the crowd were set to have a good time. Personal highlights of the set for me were ‘No Problem’ and ‘End Credits’. Meanwhile, on the Dance stage, Magnetic Man attempted to blind everyone trapped within the tent with blaring strobe lights. They were also very good, by the way.
It was that time of night, the time everyone had been waiting for; the moment for the legendary rapper to arrive back into the spotlight and blow everyone away. At first, I didn’t really think it was worth the hundreds of people punching and pushing their way to try and get in front of me, still miles away from the stage, but as the set progressed and the medley of the classic ‘Slim Shady’ era boomed from the stage, it was hard to deny just how amazing it all was. Even with rumours circling the festival that Eminem was lip-singing the whole way through, the atmosphere was insane. Hundreds of screaming fans reminisced their rebellious teenage years, screaming along to every word as though it were their right to try and over-sing the rapper. The familiar demands for an encore were thrown towards the stage and the set finally ended with an explosive ‘Lose Yourself’, keeping everyone buzzing into the early hours of the morning.