So, if you follow me on Instagram then you either would’ve a) seen my countdown posts from the last however many months or; b) the posts on the day or; c) the spam I have unleashed on my feed since Monday afternoon and are probably thinking: YES, WE FRIGGIN KNOW YOU WENT TO GROOVIN!
Yeah, well I did! And it was as rad as always. I’ve been saying lately that it’s my favourite day of the year, and after wrapping up my fifth year attending the festival I can in fact confirm that yes, it’s the grooviest – and best – day of my year.
Sure, Christmas is always a laugh and birthdays are fun, but they’re no music festival. Especially one that requires a cute little road trip, bunking on your friends’ floor and dancing/running around for 10 hours straight. It’s the festival that I’ve been to the most times, and one that I consider to be a non-negotiable in regards to attendance. Groovin is a tradition, after all. Even my dad asked when I was going to start getting discounts for going so much – haha.
This year, the lineup was as solid as always, with a lot of rad local acts and a few talented internationals thrown into the mix. For the first time ever, I didn’t have a single timetable clash so I was able to have a pretty chilled out day and just roam between the 3 stages without any of the usual “god dammit I’m going to miss ….’s best song!” stress.
We started out the day with homemade pancakes (cheers Cody), breakfast ciders and the entire morning dedicated to getting ready. In the many hours between when we woke up and when we left the house, we took absolutely zero group shots and only a handful of selfies and polaroids which I’m going to write off as ‘having too much fun to document’.
When we finally arrived at the show grounds, we made it just in time for the Vallis Alps set. The duo’s dreamy electronica was the perfect way to start a whirlwind day, with ‘Young’ enchanting the entire tent and the roamers nearby.
Next up was Drapht, an artist I haven’t listened to since Groovin 2011 but won me over once again. Despite the afternoon Townsville sun heavily beating down, the crowd was energised and lapping up every minute of the boys’ performance. I was just a litttttttle excited about their sneaky Flume remix, but it was Jimmy Recard that really got us all jumping around and singing our dehydrated little hearts out.
We raced from Drapht back to the Moulin Rouge tent, where we caught the end of British India’s badass set. I definitely regret not popping over earlier, because they absolutely killed it with the songs I did catch. They are now officially added to my ‘fantastic artists that Groovin have made me fall in love with’ list. Time to update the old Spotify playlist, I think.
After a little groove to a funky set from The Meeting Tree, we dived straight into In Heart’s Wake, and by dived I mean the crowd set up for an energised wall of death whilst I grabbed the girls (first time Groovers, definitely first time seeing a hardcore band) and dragged them a few metres back. Regardless of how close we were, it was impossible to deny that the boys were on fire with their set, and pretty much made every girl melt in their boots when Kyle sung an acoustic version of ‘Wildflower’. Ahh, that man.
The Byron boys were back to back with What So Not, and we were lucky enough to be treated with a crazy little collab between the two (think a wall of death, Jake’s signature screams and some seriously sick drops) before Emoh bewitched the crowd with with a dynamic mix of both fresh and favourite tunes.
We had a quick break between What So Not and Twenty One Pilots, a band I’ve never really listened to but the girls (and the rest of the crowd) seemed super keen to see. And boy, did they perform. Big props for the confetti canons (which I managed to get a sneaky polaroid of), crowdsurfing with an entire drum kit (whilst still keeping in time perfectly!) and the upbeat atmosphere that carried the crowd into the night.
Next up were the boys I was dying to see (again). The Rubens. After attending a super chilled gig at Tanks late last year and seeing Hoops take the crown of the Hottest 100, I was more than thrilled to see them joining the Groovin 2016 circuit. Think a drunk but ever so charismatic Sam in a groovy, open shirt, belting out all of their well loved songs in between gulps of beer, crowd surfing on a blow up mattress (legit nearly lost my hearing to all of the fangirl screams) and spraying champagne into the crowd. The boys definitely adapted to the festival circuit nicely, and got the whole damn grounds singing when they belted out Hoops.
Full of high spirits, we made our way from The Rubens back to the MR tent for a quick “sit down and die” session in preparation for Alison. We got about 10 minutes of actual sitting done before Golden Features lured us to the d-floor with his cool beats. It was impossible not to smile during this set, with positive vibes and chilled dancing all round.
After a quick snack session and my fourth trip to the merch tent (where I FINALLY purchased a shirt), we were hydrated and ready for megababe Alison Wonderland; the one name everyone blurted out when you asked them who they were keen to see at Groovin. And boy, did the Sydney gal deliver. Despite it being the end of a very big day, Alex called on us to give her our best effort in return for hers; a promise which she definitely delivered on – 239 times over.
I stumbled out of the grounds with a slight girl crush on AW (can ya blame me? She’s seriously the most badass bitch I’ve ever come across! Beyonce, gtfo), unable to move my limbs normally and with a shit tonne of excellent memories of the day.
I know this post was a little more than long, but for me there’s nothing better than documenting the good times so there’s something sweet to look back on during your lunch break at work. Because the only thing worse than not going to a festival, is going and then going back to work two days later.
Until next year Groovin <3