Spring City Festival – Auckland, 2019
Yesterday’s Sunday session finished a weekend bender of gigs on a high. That’s right, New Zealand’s first Spring City festival was on at the racecourse and proved to be a hidden banger of a time.
WORDS BY KJ PANUI | PHOTOS BY KYLE BELL
Brought together by the mind of Kyle Bell, one of the team members of the world-famous Rhythm and Vines festival, the festival brought together a range of electro-pop talent from all over the show. The lineup included New Zealand group Foley, Crooked Colours, Flight Facilities and Two Door Cinema Club.
The venue is very ‘swish’ (kupu of the day). Ellerslie Racecourse has also been the venue for Laneway as well as Electric Gardens, a successful similar festival held earlier this year that included artists Sigma and Fatboy Slim.
I hadn’t heard much about the festival so walking in was like a secret world for only those who could find it. The crowd was intimate, maybe 2000 people, so although there was a VIP section, you definitely felt like that being there.
New Zealand duo Foley were up first. It was earlier in the day, with a smaller crowd, however, the set the bar for what else is to come. This best mates duo are more than just musicians, they’re artists. Creating, writing and producing everything themselves, this band is one to watch out for.
A shout out needs to go to the Food vendors The White Lady. It was the first sight we saw heading into the racecourse and it reassured us we were in for a good time. Coming from Taranaki, I hadn’t had their award-winning street food until the weekend. These guys in themselves are worth a trip to the big smoke. Chur.
Up next is Crooked Colours. The crowd is getting bigger as people start to tune in more to the sound. The three piece EDM band are making the crowd head bob and side step a lot more. You know that this crowd is all about feeling the music.
This is my first experience with all four bands and they definitely will all be added to my Spotify playlist. That sense of chill yet ability to make you nonstop dance is what is hot at the moment. And these guys all own it.
Australian band Flight Facilities really bring up the vibrancy to the next level. These guys remind me of Rüfüs Du Sol, who funnily enough performed in Auckland earlier this year.
What I love about these guys is the structure. The electronic pop duo Hugo and James captain this flight as it takes us through the set. They are accompanied by some great vocalists who take turns leading the pack.
They interact with the crowd, as the racecourse drop low and bob until the beat drops. These guys are great, and it is no wonder they headline Rhythm and Vines.
The crowd is vibrant in energy and colours. Predominantly young, there is one elderly couple who are really showing today’s generation what boomers are really made of.
Two Door Cinema Club is the final act of the night. And they are banging. From Northern Ireland, these guys bring the image of Ron Burgendy class. The classic skivvy jacket ensemble takes us back to the 70’s, yet their sound is one of hipster energy.
It is a slamming gig and they play hit after hit. There well known hits like “Undercover Martyn” and “Something good can work” are making the crowd go wild. I’m digging their new music, ‘Satellite’ is a hit. It brings freshness yet you can still feel the uniqueness that is TDCC.
The worst part about a concert is when you hear the last song. However, we get the promise from the band (as well as the others) that they will be back. And it’s a promise I hope is kept.