WASTELAND FESTIVAL 2019 - BLOC PARTY // O2 ACADEMY, NEWCASTLE UPON TYNE
Wasteland Festival last minute venue move to O2 Academy kicks off it’s notable debut in Newcastle!
Despite a last minute venue change, The Wasteland Festival made a notable Newcastle debut last weekend. The three-day event was planned to be held at Spillers Wharf, down on the Quayside, however due to logistical issues it was moved to the main room at the O2 Academy. This unfortunately led to the cancellation of Sunday’s line up, which would have featured Richard Ashcroft as the headline act, and Peter Hook & The Light, British Sea Power, Louis Berry, Social Contract and Llovers as support acts. Inevitably, this lead to a few complaints. However, as you may have heard, the festival went down a storm and we only heard positive comments from fans.
Friday’s show kicked off with the English indie rock band, Mystery Jets, best know for their album “Twenty One”. For a crowd that was expecting an outdoor festival, it was always going to be tricky, but when they spotted the figure of the curly haired Blaine Harrison, the cheering began and positivity filled the room. They opened their set with “Telomere”, followed by a number of their classics that brought a lot of nostalgia to those who sang along. Their new single “Hospital Radio”, written on the frustrations and fears of the future of the NHS was played and it received a great reception. Unfortunately, their set was cut to 30 minutes but what an insane set they had! Perfect for warming up the crowd and creating the ambience for Circa Waves from Liverpool, who were next up.
I’ve been dying to see this band ever since they entered the music scene in 2013. They took to the stage with a very friendly and warming vibe with lead singer Kieran Shudall engaging with the crowd. The packed O2 bounced along to both their old and new music including tracks from their latest album “What’s it like over there”. By the end of their set, they had the crowd hot and sweaty. What a way to conclude with their song “T-Shirt Weather”, which had the crowd dancing.
To conclude a great night of music was Bloc Party, who need no introduction as one of the UK’s biggest bands. The place was packed to the rafters and the roar from the crowd as Kele Okereke lead the band out was deafening. You could see the delight in his face. From a slow start, the set gathered pace as the night went on. A number of tracks, including the iconic “Helicopter” and “Like Eating Glass” from the album that helped Bloc Party get a real footing in the music scene and “Silent Alarm”, were played. The highlight of the night for me was when “Banquet’’ was performed, reminding me of when I originally fell in love with the band and it was certainly a crowd pleaser!