Over the past few days the temperatures have been in the very high 30’s, and thanks to this and Southbound the South-West of WA was really hot. Mark and I had a few probs getting the 300km to Busselton which caused a f**k*d up clutch- Our Saab “Ula” has done nearly half a million kilometres and has a hissy at the idea of a road trip, poor old showgirl. Anyway after hiring a car we made it to the festival in six cylinder air-conditioned and not open-air-saab-convertible comfort.
Southbound is a music, camping and arts festival, and the available tickets sold out in record time this year thanks to the fantastic headline acts including Franz Ferdinand, Architecture in Helsinki, Santogold, Faker, Tegan & Sara, The Cat Emprire, Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings, a band I have followed for many years called Gomez, and many more. I was photographing the event for samesame.com.au.
Soko [iTunes] delivered beautiful set. The petite French songbird insisted on lighting incense before her act and had a kooky little kitsch lamp that looked like a kitten with a ball of wool sitting atop her keyboard. Architecture in Helsinki [iTunes] had the crowd bopping to their new single “That Beep” [iTunes], and The Kooks [iTunes] brought us fantastic energy and very tight jeans (see pics). Every Faker [iTunes] fan in WA was present for their performance and The Cat Empire [iTunes] whipped the crowd into a frenzy with their crazy tunes. For me, Santogold [iTunes]was the highlight of the festival, closely followed by Sharon Jones & The Dap Kings [iTunes], however the teens who threw their bra at The Kooks with their mobile number scribbled on it may disagree. In the closing hours A-Track, the DJ of choice for Kanye West pulled of a flashy set- with a climax of MGMT’s “Electric Feel” [iTunes]
Although the temperatures were high, Southbound organisers are committed to the environment with a tree per ticket policy, expanded Recycling Stations, purchasing carbon credits to offset their carbon footprint and offering solar powered mobile phone recharge stations. The 2008 International Greener Festival Award was awarded to Southbound for their environmental initiatives and ensuring the festival is completely carbon-neutral.
Southbound runs over two nights, and the best way to experience the festival is by camping onsite. I must admit, camping has never been my favourite sport, so take a tip from me for next year: Use the Pampered camper option. Pampered Campers have their tent with inflatable mattresses already set-up on arrival, and do you do not need to break a fingernail dismounting and lugging your swag gear back to your car. Plus you also get priority parking.
I wish we were going back next year- but our plans are to be in the -20°C city of Chicago this time 2010.