Victorious Festival, Portsmouth – 27/08/16

Thanks to the University of Portsmouth I attended Victorious Festival on Saturday. It was a brilliant festival, with several amazing stages and stalls set up around the large site right next to the sea. The beautiful weather made for an even better experience, there were so many wonderful acts playing including All Tvvins, Adam French and DMA’s.

We attended as VIPs thanks to the competition run by the university and I have to recommend this to everyone. If you can spare the extra £25 a day it is definitely worth it – free face painting, a VIP bar and food stalls, a covered viewing area at the Common Stage and lovely toilets. Just having somewhere to go and sit down between sets was a welcome rest and helped make the day even more enjoyable.

Whilst exploring the sprawling site we stumbled across the Castle Stage (with an actual castle!) half way through All Tvvins set. I loved them straight away and went to get closer. We were there for maybe three or four songs and there wasn’t one that I didn’t like. Whilst they span round the stage with guitars and rocked out on the drums it was hard to look away, but when I did manage to drag my eyes from the stage I saw a lot of smiling faces. I definitely recommend checking these guys out, give their new album a listen and try and catch them at a show.

My personal favourite stage was the Acoustic stage, not only were the acts playing there brilliant – but it had an awesome vibe. Set just a few minutes from both the Common Stage and the Castle Stage it caught the attention of many people wandering between the two, whilst it was quite a small stage it was the array of hay bales that completed the acoustic vibe. I loved seeing the people playing this stage, I caught the end of Andy Muscat’s set and watched Sam Brookes later in the day, both of whom were fabulous and it was so nice being able to just sit and enjoy it. Both these guys had those who were at the stage enraptured thanks to their brilliant voices – I’ll definitely be trying to get to see them again and will be checking out their music.

But just because the hay bales were there doesn’t mean they were used. For cover-band The Bootlegs there were what seemed like hundreds of people dancing around in the hay, jumping on hay bales and singing the songs loudly back to them. There wasn’t a person there without a smile on their face and the band were having a great time too. The stage felt so intimate throughout the day and it was so nice to stop and listen to what was going on there. From the stages I checked out it had the best atmosphere and was my favourite place to hang out.

Over at the Common Stage we caught DMA’s set, which was a refreshing change from the other artists we’d seen. There was hardly any talking, the set flying by and filled to the brim with tunes. It felt like there wasn’t a single second where music wasn’t playing. They had played Leeds the day before and their rocking set definitely made me feel like we’d been transported to a muddy field of rockers.

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Adam French played the Acoustic stage as the sun went down and it was brilliant. This is the second time I’ve seen him live and he gets better every time. Despite technical issues at the beginning everyone enjoyed the set, including the guy with the horse mask. The set featured new songs that have not been released yet, it was great to hear new music and get even more excited for his upcoming album. The smaller stage allowed for a really intimate feel, with more interaction with the crowd which was lovely to see and coaxed a few laughs from a tired (and drunk) crowd.

 

Victorious Festival was a massive success, the day was long and packed with excitement and I will definitely be attending next year for both days. It was hard trying to choose which stages to check out and when, but all the artists I saw throughout the day were fabulous. I was able to check out new artists and heard a lot of bands I hadn’t thought of seeing. If you get the chance to go to Victorious Festival do it – it’s not a weekend you’ll regret, even if you only do one day. The mix of new and old brought together an eclectic mix all there for their love of music and I loved it.

 

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