Last weekend I found myself quite literally knee deep in mud, bouncing up and down in the pouring rain to ‘It was a good day’ by Ice Cube and making my world spin 42 metres above the ground. Those were just a few of the things that made Parklife 2016 pretty darn ah-mazing.
I have to say, up until earlier this year I hadn’t heard of the weekend festival held at Heaton Park in Manchester, as a seasoned Leeds Fest go-er (There’s a seriously old blog post all about my experiences here if you want a giggle) I was interested to see how a festival that you don’t camp at would fare.
S T Y L E
The weather was rough, after a week of seriously hot, balmy days on the morning of the first day, the heavens opened and I knew I would have to cast my snake print Vans aside and work the wellies. The general look at Parklife was seriously Coachella inspired with plenty of off the shoulder bardot tops, denim shorts, glitter bindi’s and braids.
On the first day, I styled my wellies up with tights, my favourite leopard print shift dress and a cropped denim jacket. After a cheeky trip into Manchester city centre, brunch at the infamous Fig + Sparrow and a raid of Primark, on the second day I wore a pair of ripped knee, Topshop Joni jeans with an oversized striped tee and a faux suede waistcoat. All of this was of course layered under a plastic poncho and thrown together in the shop. #rocknroll
M U S I C
The first act on Saturday’s agenda was Craig David, as a firm appreciator of 00s garage music, this was so welcome. I found myself sat on a sturdy pair of shoulders high above the roaring crowd in a seriously sweaty tent singing along to ‘7 days’ and ‘Fill Me In’ – How else would you want to spend a Saturday? Ps. Craig’s trainers were seriously fresh and white…I know you were dying to know that.
It was then time to switch up the tone to some indie rock as we headed to another tent to see Blossoms. Now, if you haven’t listened to them, load up your Spotify player and LISTEN NOW. Blossoms are a relatively unknown and new band on the British music scene but they have something with their catchy electronic riffs. In my opinion they’re a cross between The Kooks and Jake Bugg. Their first single ‘Charlamagne’ is a cracker and it was so nice to hear them dedicate this song to the the late Viola Beach who tragically died in a car accident earlier this year.
My stand out performance of the festival was Jess Glynne, not only did she look like an absolute babe with fishtail braids, an oversized tee and what looked like Jeffery Campbell ‘Litas’ – but she was also super awesome live. My favourite song of the moment ‘Don’t be so hard on yourself’ was so brilliant to hear open air in the dusky, damp evening singing along with good company.
C O S T
Boozy drinks are around £5 each and food which ranges in cuisine is around the same price for a burger or a wrap. We stayed in a hotel over the weekend so considering that and £97 for the weekend ticket, it can be a pricey weekend if you’re not local to Manchester. But if like us you see 6,7 or 8 acts the ticket price is fairly good value and I would certainly pay it again. There’s a few rides there too, we took a recky of the grounds on the festival wheel which was £7 each for 3 rotations. It’s a pretty cool way to see everything though so i’d definitely recommend.
F E S T I V A L V I B E S
Vibes wise, Parklife this year was very pop, hip hop and dance orientated, i’ve never been before but there weren’t many bands playing this time around so that’s something to bare in mind. General crowd pleasers were Skepta, Annie Mac, Ice Cube and The Chemical Bros and i’d say in comparison to Leeds, it’s a young festival attracting a 16-25 crowd.
Whilst it might have been raining, the temperature was humid so there were some serious tropical vibes going on, that mixed with sticky mud, sweat and festival toilets it was the epitome of a great British festival.
Have you ever been to Parklife festival?