Plus The Horrors, Declan McKenna and Yonaka close out the final day
Day three of Boardmasters was rounded off triumphantly with headline sets from George Ezra, Craig David and Friendly Fires as the wind and rain returned before giving way to a momentary sunset to end the Newquay surf and music festival. Here’s what we learned on the final day.
George Ezra has his own football anthem in ‘Shotgun’
Tonight’s Main Stage headliner brings a crowd the size of a small football stadium for a 90 minute set which sees the crooner recalling past tales about song inspiration. One story in particular sees him regale the time he bought an inter-rail ticket across Europe and wrote a song about a city he actually skipped – Budapest. The song eventually bagged him a Number Three hit. Who said you needed to do your research?.
His deep vocals sound outstanding at times though as he croons: What you waiting, what you waiting for on early hit ‘Blame It On Me’ and Give me one good reason why I should never make a change? on ‘Budapest’. When it all ends with stadium anthem ‘Shotgun’ – a track which Ezra pleaded with fans not to buy so that ‘3 Lions’ could go to Number One – it sounds like a football anthem in its own right as the crowd sing every word in unison.
Friendly Fires know how to throw a beach party
One thing you can guarantee at a surf and music bash is Friendly Fires bringing their own beach party to the stage. Backed by a bongo player and brass section, Ed and the gang whip out a host of sunkissed bangers and plenty of cowbell as they plough through the hits from their 2008 self titled debut and 2011 LP ‘Pala’.
Recent comeback single ‘Love Like Waves’ makes an appearance as does another new cut ‘Can’t Wait Forever’ – a club tropicana banger laced with a funky bass line and catchy refrain which sees Ed busting his trademark dance moves and barking: Ba da ba dup ba da ba da/ Ba da ba dup ba da ba da. It’s great to have these guys back.
Craig David is a whizz behind the decks
Craig David’s TS5 project started as a hobby from the comforts of his Miami home but has now become a fully blown global DJ event as the ‘Seven Days’ superstar jets across the world spinning tracks with the help of his laptop. The bulk of his set basically sees him getting behind the decks before jumping out onstage to sing a selection of his own famous hits (‘Fill Me In’, ’16’ and ‘7 Days’) while his decks play out the anthems. It may sound a bit lame but surprisingly it works particularly when David goes acapella and starts spilling lyrics from his biggest anthems.
The Horrors loving surfing, apparently
The last thing anyone expected The Horrors to declare during their gloomy set was their love of surfing. It’s comical to even contemplate Faris jumping on a surf board let alone riding the waves. But according to him, the excellent ‘Endless Blue’ is “about surfing, which we all love” apparently. In terms of his day job, there’s no doubt he’s an expert in scribing brilliant songs be they krautrock belters (‘Sea Within A Sea’), dirty industrial numbers (‘Machine’) or monster disco anthems like ‘Something To Remember Me By’, the latter of which is truly mindlblowing tonight as the band are cloaked in a blanket of white fog and blinding strobe lights. Outstanding.
Declan McKenna shouln’t go singing in the rain
It’s pouring down when Declan McKenna hits the Main Stage for his mid-afternoon set. But he’s determined to brighten the mood with his jaunty pop songs and at one point threatens to join the crowd in braving the elements. Unfortunately, he takes an awkward tumble when he eventually does so midway through ‘Paracetamol’. Thankfully he rescues the situation with a stunning rendition of FIFA 17 anthem ‘Isombard’.
Yonaka’s frontwoman is a bad ass
Brighton have already produced a rock monster in ‘Royal Blood’ and now they’re about to do the same with Yonaka. The fiery quartet are backed by bad ass frontwoman Theresa Jarvis who sounds like Karen O and Courtney Love’s baby sister as she struts and spits: You’re fucking with the boss now/You’re fucking with the boss now/You’re fucking with the boss now on dirty rock anthem ‘F.W.T.B’. This quartet have got the tunes to back up her fuck you attitude too as they fire out ferocious numbers like ‘Waves’, ‘Wouldn’t Wanna Be Ya’ and ‘Dreamers’.