Saturday, 11 January 2014: “Jo’burg, this has been our biggest headline gig to date!” shouted Bastille’s frontman Dan to the 15,000 fans who’d come out to see them play.  Visibly thrilled to have such a huge South African fanbase, the band’s energy was contagious as the sold-out crowds fed off of their enthusiasm.   The day couldn’t have gone any better.  Just as the scorching sun was at its peak, the clouds opened for a typical 20 minute Highveld storm, which cooled everything down to replenish energy levels.  As the rain stopped and the sun streamed in, the only thunder to be heard was the roar of applause as Bastille took to the stage.

Combining their number one hits with some of their newer work, their performance was seamless.  Crowd favourite ‘Things we lost in the fire’ was played early on in their set to get the fans revved, which was further fed by Dan donning a hoodie and walking through the crowd.  Of course, their number one single ‘Pompeii’ was kept for the finale, and what a finale it was, as local band Bed on Bricks was welcomed back on stage to sing the closing number.  Dave, Bed on Bricks’ guitarist is Dan’s cousin, that’s got to have some perks right?

Not only did fans adore Bastille, but they were also treated to a fantastic, interactive set by Matthew Mole who opened the festival at 12pm.  His quirky conversation had crowds chuckling whilst grooving to his folk/electronica beats. Cape Town’s Beatenberg, best known for their hit track ‘Chelsea Blakemore’, won the audience over with their charming, upbeat performance.  We can’t wait for their next album due out in March.  

The final local group on the line-up was Bed On Bricks who opened for Bastille. The crowd loved them!  Charismatic vocalist Mike had everyone dancing to their fast-paced funk rock, setting the scene in anticipation for the headline act.

Threading all performances together were dynamo duo 5FM’s Fix and Rob Forbes, the event’s MC’s who certainly injected fun into the day.  Having supported Bastille’s tour from the onset, we take our hats off to the station for the hype and excitement they created around it.


Headline Sponsor Nokia, gave the fans something to remember with their photo booths for picture-sharing and Lumia1020 activations. It was clear that both the fans and artists recognize how sponsorships add weight to shows of this magnitude, so big up to Nokia for their support that helped step the production up a notch.


Of course the company behind the tour is Seed Experiences, the true professionals who have the festival scene waxed.  Not only were there were ample bars, toilets and food vendors, but they erected on of the biggest stage structures that has ever been set up on the African continent.  With Rocking the Daisies, WE ARE ONE, Sowing the Seeds and Vodacom In the City in their portfolio, their winning formula’s going to see great things from them this year.


Keep an eye on what they’re up to here:


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