Sundown Festival | 2018 Review
Shawn Mendes is the highlight in a weekend full of electric energy and memories to last a lifetime.
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Sundown is the first music festival I have ever had the chance of attending and it blew me away. Arriving at the campsite early Saturday morning with my sister, we quickly realised that we were essentially ill-prepared: our tent, an old relic, and our snacks, completely the wrong sort! After fruitlessly trying to construct our tent, a couple came over and helped us out, as easy can be, and that simple friendship set the tone for the next few days.
The sun was strong and that was all the encouragement we needed to explore the huge site (Norwich Showground) which was simply spectacular. The wide variety of food stalls, the hair raising theme park-esque rides and the different stages set us up for an amazing weekend.
On Saturday (the first full day of the festival), the Main Stage kicked things off just after midday with Folly Rae, with Echo Knight satisfying our dance music needs over at Castle (one of the three dance music-dedicated tents, alongside Nest and Mystree). DJ Harry Pearce got us into the mood with some amazing tunes at Nest, which had been taken over by Defected for the day.
Back on the Main Stage, Grace Carter, followed by HRVY, sent the ever-building crowds wild! The crowd went crazy for HRVY as soon as he hit the stage! He blasted through some of his best songs, including 'Personal' and 'Hasta Luego', alongside some covers of Ed Sheeran and Bruno Mars. His dance moves were electric and it got the crowd moving along.
Yxng Bane tore up the Main Stage with songs such as 'Rihanna' and 'Vroom'. The crowd was the loudest they had ever been. He brought the mosh pits and energy and had us all singing along at the top of our lungs. Bugzy Malone was up next and he kept the same vibe going and time flew.
The sun was starting to set (or... sun-down!) when we were blessed by Zara Larrson and her beautiful voice. It was one of those sets where you realise just how many hits she has - 'Never Forget You' and 'Ain't My Fault' were just some of her songs that got big reactions. When she finsihed, the crowd was at a high as they knew they were one more act away from the headliner, Shawn Mendes.
Then Sigma took to the stage and blew our minds. The energy was unlike anything we had ever seen and as the sun set, we were all dancing and singing - any exhaustion long forgotten.
Shawn Mendes took to the stage and the crowd lost it - particular highlights were 'Youth' (preceded by a passionate speech about how our generation would be the one to fix the world) as well as 'Stitches', although with such an electric crowd reaction to every movement Shawn made, every song could be considered a highlight. He ended off with a mash-up of Kings of Leon's 'Use Somebody' into his single 'Treat You Better' which topped off perhaps one of the best live shows I have ever seen.
Waking up on Sunday morning came with a bittersweet feeling; knowing that we would have leave soon but also that would be able to listen to such amazing music.
Ms Banks brought up the energy at the Main Stage, while Harry Pearce and also James Hype took over Castle.
Andy C drew the crowds in at Nest - his set was simply electric. At the Main Stage, Kojo Funds built up the energy and Sigala had an amazing set. With a consistent up-beat tempo through-out the day, the mood was infectious. The crowds were seemingly never ending. Through-out Krept & Konan's set there was a mash-up of mosh pits and sing-a-longs: the best way to describe how they kept us fully engaged in their songs.
Wilkinson used the sunset and upcoming darkness to blast us with lasers and all forms of lighting - we sang till we were hoarse and Clean Bandit was still left to come. This ended what was a pretty amazing weekend, with such brilliant music and stunning weather.