All photos thanks to David Taylor – www.davidtaylorphotographer.com
Splendour in the Grass 2018 was all blue skies and good vibes as North Byron Parklands played host to a huge program of music, art, craft, food, discussion and debate over three days.
When Splendour 2018 went on sale earlier this year all 35000 tickets sold out in under 25 minutes, the festival’s fastest sell out ever, for a lineup that featured over 100 acts including Kendrick Lamar, Lorde, Vampire Weekend, Khalid, Hilltop Hoods, Miguel, Chvrches, Franz Ferdinand, Angus & Julia Stone, MGMT, Gang of Youths, Amy Shark and so many more.
When the gates opened on Thursday, North Byron Parklands became a home away from home to our Splendour campers, many of whom kicked off their weekend that evening with Red Bull Sound Select on the Mix Up stage and killer sets by Dallas Woods, Baker Boy, UV Boi, Hoops, The Formula and more.
On Friday Adelaide’s West Thebarton set the tone with a pedal to the metal set of raw Aussie rock; Jack River pulled a huge crowd at the GW McLennan for a sing-along set that included ‘Fool’s Gold’ and a cover of Tal Bachman’s ‘She’s So High’; Murray Cook (aka the Red Wiggle) made a surprise appearance with DZ Deathrays and fully shredded some Acca Dacca ‘Highway to Hell’; Baker Boy’s ‘Black Magic’ had the whole Mix Up jumping; Dune Rats were joined by A.B. Original, Alex Lahey, Drapht, Mallrat, Tkay Maidza, Waax, Hockey Dad, DZ Deathrays, Gooch Palms and one of the Bennies for a heaps fun set that included covers of Basement Jaxx, The Offspring and Black Eyed Peas; and Lorde brought the night to an end with a transcendent set that included all her hits, a wardrobe malfunction and a cover of Powderfinger’s ‘My Happiness’.
Saturday was chilly, but the sets were hawt! And while Chvrches, Franz Ferdinand, Ben Harper, Vampire Weekend and all the internationals delivered huge sets, the Aussie’s were really in their element! Byron Bay Unearthed winner Seaside opened on the Amphitheatre stage with their dreamy pop and a cover of Pixies ‘Hey’; Amy Shark took to the stage on a high after being presented with an ARIA No. 1 plaque backstage just prior to her set; WAAX surprised the crowd at the GW McLennan when they invited Bernard Fanning to the stage to perform ‘Don’t Wanna Be Left Out’; and both Methyl Ethel and Gang of Youths turned the Amphitheatre into one monumental sing-along. We could go on and on. So. Many. Great. Moments.
Sunday kicked off with a punk rock service by Amyl & The Sniffers and a call from lead singer Amy to “Wake the fuck up, Splendour!”. The people listened and the crowd swelled for a blistering set by UK artist Yungblud. PNAU filled the Amphitheatre for one of the highlights of the weekend – a crazy, colourful journey to planet good times with a set list that included their classics to a brand new track. After a guest appearances with Dunies on Friday, both Mallrat and Hockey Dad pulled huge crowds to the Mix Up and GW McLennan stages, with Hockey Dad surprising punters with their own special guest, Aussie rock icon Tim Rogers. MGMT, Ball Park Music, The Wombats and Girl Talk all delivered killer sets too but as we edged towards the end of Splendour 2018 it was all about Kung Fu Kenny. Kendrick Lamar stunned a capacity crowd in the Amphitheatre with a performance that showed us all why he is one of the biggest acts on the planet right now. The entire Amphitheatre crowd singing HUMBLE after Kendrick had cut the music is something that no one is gonna forget any time soon.
When they weren’t at The Amphitheatre, Mix Up Stage, GW McLennan Tent and Tiny Dancer stages, Splendour punters ate and shopped at 130+ food and market stalls; crafted up a storm at Splendour in the Craft; marveled at Splendour Arts’ Snoop Dogg Hotdogs, pelted mud at Shock Therapy Productions The Cleaners and more; did the downward dog, drummed, watched cabaret and more at The Global Village; discussed the hot topics of today and the future at The Forum and expanded their minds at the Science Tent and Tipi Forest. And our littlest rockers partied until they were pooped at Little Splendour.
Health Services Manager Stephen Barnes said “This year we saw a further reduction of presentations so I would like to congratulate all the Splendour patrons for looking after themselves and each other. We also introduced a GP service and counsellors which was a great success.”
Co-producers Jessica Ducrou and Paul Piticco said “What a weekend! Splendour 2018 was one to remember and we want to say a huge thanks to our Splendour community for their enthusiasm for our event. You guys are the magic that makes Splendour so special. Big love to you all! See you next year.”