Rage Against The Machine, LCD Soundsystem, Dizzee Rascal play Big Day Out

Unkle, Battles and Spoon play after Björk's cancellation at Sydney leg

DJ Carl Cox has just wrapped up the Sydney leg of the Big Day Out tonight (January 25), as over 55,000 fans packed Sydney Showgrounds for the third date of the touring festival.

Fans watched artists including Rage Against The Machine, Dizzee Rascal, LCD Soundsystem, Enter Shikari, Dr Octagon, UNKLE, Anti-Flag, Battles and Spoon perform on an overcast day after their previous appearances at the Big Day Out in Auckland, New Zealand and on the Queensland Gold Coast.

As previously reported on NME.COM, second Björk was forced to cancel her appearance at the festival on orders from her doctor, due to “swelling vocal chords”.


The illness is part of what has proved a difficult tour for the Iclandic singer – her Antipodean arrival was marred by her alleged attacking of a newspaper photographer at Auckland International Airport ahead of her Big Day Out appearance in New Zealand.

Rage Against The Machine fans reportedly booed her during her performance before the Los Angeles rockers played at the Gold Coast Big Day Out earlier this week (January 20).

“I’m devastated,” one fan, “Tanya“, told NME.COM today. “I travelled five hours to see her – she was going to bring something a bit different to the day. It’s been 12 years since she was last at the Big Day Out, and I hope it’s not another 12 years before she comes back!”

As yet there has been no word from Big Day Out organisers as to whether Björk will be able to play the next date of the festival in Melbourne next week (January 28).

Operator Please were one of the first bands to grace the main stage in Sydney today, playing hits including current single ‘Leave It Alone’ and a cover of Devo’s ‘Whip It’.

Kate Nash played the Essential Stage in the early afternoon, saying the Big Day Out tour had so far been “amazing“ before Billy Bragg joined her onstage for a rendition of his track ‘New England’.


Nash was clearly in awe of the singer, gushing “the man, the legend… Billy Bragg,” before admitting, “I’m overexcited now – I can’t concentrate!” before beginning her next song, ‘Foundations’.

Rage Against The Machine guitarist Tom Morello also played an acoustic set on the Essential Stage later in the day, under the guise of his alter ego The Nightwatchman.

Local heroes Silverchair then hit the mainstage as Battles launched into a typically frenetic show on the side Green Stage, including their single ‘Atlas’ in the set.

Having already played two sideshows in Sydney this week, Arcade Fire were bumped up the bill in Björk’s absence, playing second headliners to Rage Against The Machine.

On their first ever tour of Australia, the Canadian seven-piece spoke little during their performance but played a extended set including tracks ‘Neighbourhood #1’, ‘Neighbourhood #2’ and ‘Rebellion’.

Rage Against The Machine then closed the main stages with a 15- song strong setlist, finishing with crowd favourite ‘Killing In The Name’. It was the bands first appearance in Australia since they last played the Big Day Out in 1996.

The Big Day Out continues in Melbourne next week (January 28). The remaining dates are as follows.

Melbourne Flemington Racecourse (28)

Adelaide Showground (February 1)

Perth Claremont Showgrounds (3)

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