Finsbury Park played host to London’s second ever Community Festival on the 1st of July. In the middle of the UK’s longest heatwave for decades, the high termperatures didn’t stop tens of thousands of music fans from slapping on the glitter and heading down to the day festival of dreams.
Ten Tonnes were the first group I saw and they set the day up perfectly. Playing the N4 stage with the attitude of a main stage act, Ten Tonnes drew in a huge crowd and whether you knew their songs or not. Their music called you over and kept you there. Playing a mix of old and new tracks the crowd jumped along hurling themselves, their cups and their sunglasses up in the air.
Marmozets took over the main stage, one of my top highlights of the day. Joining the crowd during a small thank you speech from a very sweet and polite Becca MacIntyre, I was not prepared for the sheer volume and energy this group could produce. Their mosh worthy music fully took over the hundreds of fans who had gathered to watch, captivated by Becca’s powerful voice and energetic stage presence. They closed their set with ‘Major system error’ and definitely left the crowd wanting more.
The N4 stage was taken over by King Nun, the four piece rock group brought their quirky style and heavy music to the afternoon. Incredibly thankful for their opportunity to play at Community Festival they gave their all, stomping up and down across the stage proud of their own heavy beats. Lead singer Theo announcing mid set ‘I like the sunshine, but not when its directly in my fucking eye’ summed up what I’m sure a lot of other acts we’re feeling towards the heat.
As the sunny day drew on, Sundara Karma and Circa Waves took to the main stage with their fitting summery sounds. Crowds grew bigger and louder, roaring lyrics back to the stage as if to thank the musicians for gracing them with music perfect for such a beautiful day.
Walk on music is always an important choice to artists, especially for You Me at Six who introduced themselves to the sound of ‘Three Lions’. Self proclaimed football fanatic frontman Josh Franceschi seemed to dedicate their set to the premise that football is in fact coming home. Always expected to be a crowd pleasing performance, You me At Six did not disappoint, playing throwback classics such as ‘Underdog’ and introducing new singles ‘3am’ and ‘Fast Forward’ to their set. Pitting left and right against each other in a battle for best mosh circle, even after 14 years of gigs, the band still enjoy having fun with their audience.
Experts in their craft, The Vaccines obviously love what they do, the play like the professionals they are, not put off by hot weather or a loud crowd. Watching The Vaccines play even on such a huge stage with a massive crowd still feels like watching a new emerging band play their first gig. They’re passionate and well rehearsed and that combination is always going to catch on to an audience. Blaring the lyrics back to cool-as-a-cucumber singer Justin Young, their fans watched with as much passion as their were given. They demonstrated the power of their song writing skills by playing a song they had only just written the week before and managed to have the whole crowd singing along by the end of it.
Two Door Cinema Club played their festival exclusive set to close off the day, drawing in the biggest crowd of the day. With a massive light show set up behind the band we knew we were in for a major treat. Playing through their catalogue of pure festival worthy bangers with just as much precision that we hear from their recorded tracks. Hardly anyone could keep still, from the die hard fans on barriers at the front to young children at the back dancing from their perch on their parent’s shoulders. Lead singer Alex Trimble expressed his thanks to the thousands of fans watching on, as well as the festival producers for inviting them to such a huge show which clearly meant a lot to the group. Closing their set with an Instagram worthy colourful display of fireworks, ensuring everyone watching on felt the celebration in the air.
Day festivals are a special and growing part of the live music scene, Community Festival may only be two years old but it already holds a special place in the minds of those who have attended. I know I’m already making plans for next year and counting down for a line-up announcement. Special thanks should also go to those who working in the heat to ensure everyone’s safety, from providing water to bustling crowds to the cup deposit scheme, the little things have made Community Festival impossible to not enjoy. We’ll see you there next year!