some guy climbed the tent at field day
Field Day is always a pretty great time -- and for its eleventh year, the Victoria Park festival really pulled out the stops. The sun was shining, Adwoa, Slick and Elliot were winking down at us from the i-D posters dotted about the place, and music (sweet music) was dancing in the air.
i-D favourites HMLTD -- freshly back from a trip to Moscow -- looked and sounded great in a big blue tent, while darkwave duchess of Awful Records ABRA killed it further down the park. California punk/rap pros Death Grips loomed over circle pits that formed but soon disbanded throughout their heavy set. Later on, the remaining member of Silver Apples (key players and major electronic production innovators in 60s NYC) impressed music heads, while Texas synth fiends S U R V I V E, the four-piece behind the Stranger Things theme, failed to play the Stranger Things theme. We missed Australian psych kids King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard and techno stalwart Nina Kraviz because we were busy dashing between LA's creative genius of funk Flying Lotus, UK boychild Mura Masa, and the PC music showcase-cum-visual art installation. Too little time, too much greatness.
As things began to get cold, dark and windy, crowds began to flood into the 14,000 capacity hangar formerly known as The Barn ready for The Return of Richard D James. It was the man of the moment's first UK Aphex Twin show in five years and the setting was appropriately epic, an impressive new addition with great sound and more lasers than Fabric and Printworks combined. The headline show was exactly the kind of audio-visual mindfuck everybody wanted from the icon: a stirring, sci-fi-tinged two hours that featured fast flashing visuals that jumped between cut-out faces picked from the crowd and the warped visages of cultural figures like the Kardashians, Mr Blobby, Katie Hopkins, Nigel Farage and, you guessed it, Neil Buchanan from Art Attack. It was kind of like in A Clockwork Orange when Alex has his eyes pinned open for his aversion therapy, but awesome.
The night ended on a literal high as a bloke having the time of his life climbed right up to the ceiling and hung upside down from the supporting poles, presumably nonplussed about falling to his demise if it was to a live soundtrack of AFX. Come to daddy!
Text Frankie Dunn
Photography Elliott Morgan