Boardmasters has always been a festival like no other and this year was one that even managed to top previous years. Thats right. I have been to many festivals in my time, several even this year and I am sure in the UK alone there are several hundred each year, but Boardmasters has always topped the list in my eyes and no doubt it has been the same for others.
The location of Newquay combined with the month of August, brings an optimised combination for success. Throughout the weekend we saw sunny skies, warm humid weather and little rain which could have easily ruined the festival experience like some of you may have witnessed at Download. The festival was broken down into two sites, easily accessible by shuttle bus. Watergate Bay where all the music and entertainment happened and Fistral Beach, where all the sports went down. Both beautiful spots to showcase the luxury sites of Newquay while transforming the area to so much more, for this event occasion.
For a dirt cheap festival (£70), compared to the average price of a festival (£200), you got big artists such as Ed Sheeran, Dizzee Rascal, Ting Tings, Maximo Park, Maverick Sabre and Young Guns. Some artists which have also appeared at this years V-Festival, one of the UK’s finest. With the opportunity to mix the experiences of a beach festival such as Beach Break and that of a typical music event on a big proportion, you get excellent value for money.
During the day at Boardmasters saw a surreal experience. Due to the park being broken up to two sites, it was only until 7pm where it started getting that festival buzz at the main music arena. Until then it had the most relaxed atmosphere ever with no typical hustle, bustle and rush you normally find. An atmospheric buzz like no other. A combination for success.
Although I had been impressed by small time bands Eager Teeth and Eye Emma Jedi, it was the bigger names that gave the lasting impression. As I only attended the saturday event due to work commitments (like most people would), I missed out of fridays events, however I don’t feel too seen off for missing out. Friday would have played host to a more of a build up to the saturday acts as most of the artists were not so ‘party’ orientated. This is where Dizzee Rascal made the weekend perfect. I am sure every available nook and cranny Watergate Bay was crammed in with Dizzee fans to the brim. Everyone loving life and everyone in the mood which made up an unbelievable atmosphere. Bonkers, Holiday and his latest ‘colab’ with DJ Fresh, Power sounded perfect. No doubt it was the highlight of my weekend, or possibly even my year. To begin with however, Dizzee was always one of those artists I wanted to see ever since his debut album in 2006, Boy In Da Corner. But as he got more popular and aswell playing a smaller festival compared to a bigger one which he may be used to by now, Ive found with some artists performances (no names said) to be fairly poor and this intimidated me to begin with. I am glad this was an exception. A big performance for a worthy crowd. No doubt from asking around Ed Sheeran did not disappoint either.
The night didn’t stop there. Young Guns headlining the Relentless stage played an unbelievable set with songs off their latest album, Bones and other big hits such as Crystal Clear. Although the sound system what came from the Relentless stage was rather disappointing, that did not avert everyone’s eyes from their last performance in the UK before setting off to Germany. In a perfect world, I would have tweaked the stage times during the evening so I didn’t have to run constantly between the main, Relentless and undercover stages as I am a Don Broco fan boy while also wanting to get in the party mode for Maverick, Dizzee and Zane Lowe later in the evening. Close but no cigar.
Overall my experience was perfect. I couldn’t have asked for a better time at Boardmasters. Sun, music and friends make an unforgettable experience. One which you cannot fault. Im glad Boardmasters was able to host such a great time. I finally had that festival experience that reminded me why I even go to festivals. For that sudden rush of adrenaline and excitement.