The evening played out like something from a Greek myth, a temple on the mountain, a congregation of devotees in an Amphitheatre, a thunderstorm from the heavens, people singing in chorus and a magic ritual on a stage. The setting was the Voortrekker Monument and the headliner was Mumford and Sons. The irony is that the Monument is proudly Afrikaans and all the Boere were singing along to some “Rooinekke”. Voortrekkers Omies definitely were doing spitbraai rotations in their graves. Epic backdrop and irony aside, it was quite a cool evening.
Thanks to the Hilltop Live team for breaking the V on the greater Voortrekker monument venue for nice (read non-Skouspel) music. Watkykjy mentioned that the Dome sucks and I wholeheartedly concur. Pretoria has two weather settings, perfect and thunder. The possibilities for open air fun is unrivalled. To me as a Dutchie there is hidden element of reconciliation to reappropriating relics of the past for things the current generation is interested in, something from the ashes, but I am veering off topic.
Big up to Hilltop for the crowd control. Plenty space to get drunk, little confusion of where to go, adequate pee space (soil PH levels were definitely not the same after the evening though) and also more than one concert grounds entry. We have definitely come far since the My Cokefest days.
The discerning listener in me (read reformed hipster) was impressed with the local line-up. Ashamed at attending something as pop as a Mumford show, I could still sneak in under the guise of the cool credentials of John Wizards and The Brother Moves On. John Wizards and The Brother Moves On and John Wizards are both made of a seriously tasty eclectic local music flavour, the only distinction maybe being that John Wizards draws more inspiration from drugs. Shame on everybody for not supporting the locals more.
Beatenberg served as an appropriate bridge between the local and the English. I like me some Beatenberg. They channel the Paul Simon and Vampire Weekend sound, the-rich-tourist-in-a-township sound.
My personal preference was not on Mumford’s side, but gosh darnit the evening was just too alluring and it was difficult not to share in the vibe of the group of friends I was with. Luckily the new songs were less liked and it was not frowned upon when I sat during those.
The Mumford’s 5FM treffers hit us at the end, wailing choruses, plus rain and the pinnacle of life for every pale skinned fifteen year old model C school girl in the audience was born. For real though, it felt scripted, see the thunder picture. Luckily there was enough time to come back to Earth on the way out. Uber was as flooded as the highways, but somehow the discomfort almost was justified by the performance.