Fest à la suédoise: Way Out West – Day 3

Going to a fest outdoors, in the north of Europe in the summer, you risk either getting soaked in the middle of a concert or, alternatively, missing a few acts because of the rain. That’s precisely what happened on Day 3 of the WOW fest. Our plans included seeing, first, Sun Kil Moon, Lianne La Havas, and Chic ft. Nile Rodgers. However, because of the rain, we didn’t go to the WOW fest till past 7pm, so we just saw part of Patti Smith, Δ (read as alt-J), Ellie Goulding and part of First Aid Kit, as the rain struck back and we chickened out again and went back to the hotel. Oh well…

Only last year that I became acquainted with Δ. Since then, I’ve listened to them on and off. However, during the last two months, possibly prompted by the fact of having seen them live at Primavera Sound (PS), I’ve been spinning them A LOT, especially their first album, An Awesome Wave, playing it up to three times a day during the last few weeks of July. Possibly because I was fascinated by their performance at PS, possibly because I was attending their gig at WOW with the person who introduced me to them, my expectations and excitement to see alt-J live again were as high as the sky, despite knowing that they’re rather distant on stage. Perhaps because of this, I was bitterly disappointed when they hit the first notes (or should I say bombs?) to find out that the volume of their synthesized percussion beats was set so high that it was unbearable to stay front row. No sing-alongs either from the crowd. What’s wrong with you, WOW?!?!? Besides, it being a gig scheduled in the late eve, when there was still daylight, the whole performance turned out to be a decaf version of what I could experience at Primavera. In contrast with PS, though, Joe Newman, lead vocals, smiled quite a few times and proved he can even laugh on stage.

To get an idea of what they are like live…

Ellie Goulding, in contrast, didn’t disappoint me one bit. What’s more, she has one or two things to teach to many female pop singers currently on tour. My interest in Ellie Goulding grew after seeing Divergent, where she participates in three tracks of the OST, none of which performed at WOW. Oh well… She did perform all her other greatest hits, including an awesome song belonging to the OST of a terrible movie (or so they say)…

Her electro-pop sounded brilliant, her voice sounded impeccable despite her constant dance moves, which left her out of breath at the end of most songs. She loved the audience and so did they, bobbing their heads or dancing to the most upbeat tunes. In conclusion, not having seen her live before and not knowing her discography in depth, I can say I root for Ellie Goulding and her future career.

Ellie Goulding WOW 15 (4)

The fest closing was in the hands of the sweet Swedish duo First Aid Kit, from whom you might be familiar with their song ‘My Silver Lining’, featuring in the Renault Kadjar commercial. Their melancholic setlist, as charming and heavenly as their baby faces and moves, didn’t prevent the crowd from filing back home when the rain made yet again a noticeable appearance.

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