Last weekend I attended my first ever music festival. Many of you already know that I’m a massive concert junkie (I literally have about 10 gig reviews to write from over the summer!) so I thought it was well about time for me to check out a festival. I really couldn’t have picked one with a better lineup here. I’m still actually in shock that the Longitude bookers got such an A1 Hip-Hop lineup.
I’m going to break it down day-by-day and talk about my experience. Now, Longitude isn’t a camping festival so I haven’t gotten the FULL experience yet but with Electric Picnic just around the corner, it won’t be long before we see how that treats me.
We didn’t get to Marlay Park until like half 5 on our first day as we spent most of the morning travelling and then we had to get ready and get a few drinks into us. We managed to catch the very end of Alma on the main stage when we got in before we moved in to see Post Malone. This was one of the shows I was more looking forward to during the weekend, it certainly drew one of the biggest crowds especially considering he was only 3rd on the bill. He was pretty good, the sound was fairly shit and the speakers couldn’t really take the bass.
One issue I had throughout the weekend was that so many acts clashed on the timetable. I missed Versatile for Post Malone which was pretty gutting. Friday was definitely the worst day for clashes as all of the top 3 billed acts on the main stage clashed with other great acts. We watched some of Migos next on the main stage, well, it was 2/3rds of Migos as Offset was off celebrating the birth of his daughter with Cardi B who was also supposed to play the festival before pulling out, unlike Offset (badum tss). Migos were pretty average so we left to catch the end of Joey Bada$$’ set who was actually pretty amazing.
The headlining acts on the Friday was where the main clash came. Whoever decided the schedule J.Cole at the same time as Khalid needs to be fired immediately. Arguably two of the biggest acts of the day. We had already seen J.Cole in Dublin last year so we weren’t too pushed on missing a bit of his set. We stayed for the start of Cole and then decided to move towards Khalid’s stage. Big mistake.
Khalid was playing in the Heineken Tent which was so full that we literally couldn’t get close enough to even see him as a speck and the sound didn’t travel well to outside the tent so we made our way back to main stage for the end of Cole. J. Cole is someone I genuinely think I could see perform live over and over again and never get sick of so I’m definitely not mad that we saw him.
We started day 2 early because we wanted to catch Big Shaq at 2 o’clock. This meant one thing. Cans for breakfast. We were all a bit allergic to being there so early because there was a bit of a gap between Big Shaq (who was actually fairly class) and the next act we wanted to see. This gave us time to explore the festival site a bit so it was worth heading in early. We checked out the red bull stage where they had the only vodka bar on site and a DJ playing absolute bangers. We also got to check out the Desperados stage which was just like an outdoor club with a little platform area where you could look out over the festival. Today was also the hottest day of the weekend so we were catching as much shade as humanly possible.
After chilling for a bit we got food and checked out the end of Sigrid’s set. She was actually really good, definitely going to try to catch her set at EP this year. Our next act was Giggs purely because I had convinced myself that he was going to bring Drake out with him (he didn’t).
Next up was the act that sold me on the whole festival. Tyler, The Creator. This man is one of my all-time favourite artists so the second I saw him on the lineup, I was there. He genuinely put on one of the best shows I’ve ever seen. Unfortunately, his set clashed with Lil Pump so I couldn’t realise my lifelong dream of seeing Gucci Gang performed live.
— Adam Gilroy (@GilroysWorld) July 14, 2018
We had another clash for the second last acts of day 2. Rejjie Snow and Diplo were on at the same time so we decided to check out Rejjie first before heading to Diplo on main stage. Big mistake. Diplo was one of the worst acts I’ve ever seen. I think the promoters literally just booked him to mix up the almost exclusive hip-hop vibe of the festival. They definitely should have booked literally anyone else. It was bad to the point that when the set ended, it took a few minutes to realise so.
The last act of day 2 was Travis Scott (Kylie’s baby daddy). While I’m not a massive fan of his music, he put on one of the most insane performances I’ve ever seen. That man has energy for days and just so much fire. His set also included the only fireworks I saw all weekend. Well, it was more like fiery confetti but it was close enough.
We were absolutely bate from the first two days so the plan on day 3 was to chill. It would have been the perfect day to just sit on the grass by mainstage and sip away on some pints. Unfortunately, our plan didn’t quite work as we woke up on Sunday morning to the most amount of rain I’d have seen in about a month.
As someone who absolutely despises the rain, the plan swiftly changed to drink as much as you can so you don’t even realise it’s raining. Worked like a dream. Okay, the rain wasn’t THAT bad but the worst thing was that it was still warm so adding the extra layer of a poncho just made the day a bit more of a struggle.
The only act I really NEEDED to see on Sunday was Anderson .Paak. He was incredible. So incredible that out of the 5 people in our group, 2 fainted during the set and had to go to the hospital tent (it was that hot).
It dried up a bit as the evening went on so it wasn’t all bad. We caught a bit of SZA’s set (she was like 25 minutes late) and then headed to see some of J Hus before going back to SZA. I’m not exactly sure what the reason behind that was, SZA was decent, J Hus wasn’t great.
The main headliner on Sunday to close out the weekend was Solange (Beyoncé’s sister). We had absolutely zero interest in this so we opted to see “The Story of Hip-Hop” in the Heineken Tent. This was one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen. It was the RTÉ Orchestra performing classic Hip-Hop tracks featuring a few Irish rappers on vocals. It absolutely blew me away.
We managed to catch like the last 30 seconds of Solange’s set, there was about 15 people turned up for it. I think they massively dropped a ball with having her as main headliner when Childish Gambino was literally playing in London the night before. But then again, if it was someone better I wouldn’t have experienced The Story of Hip-Hop.
As I write this, I’m still in genuine shock that I got to see so many of my favourite artists in one weekend. I don’t think I’m ever going to have such a great weekend of music. The only real issue I had with the weekend was the clash in set times. They really fucked that up. That doesn’t make Longitude any less than a 10/10 though. Hopefully they keep it Hip-Hop oriented from here on.