I worried about a lot of things before I attended the Bastille concert in Johannesburg on Saturday, the 11th of January. I worried about 5FM’s seemingly successful involvement in the tour, I worried about how I wasn’t the biggest Bastille fan and I worried about weather reports leading up to the event. It was just a damn worry party. But in hindsight I smile whenever I think about this concert as it was so many things I didn’t expect it to be and I’m going to explain why.
The line-up was great
I liked the line-up and expected that the music would be good but I didn’t expect to love it all so much. Matthew Mole threw so much charm into the audience that I’m still practically wearing a charm bracelet with his name on it. I have never seen Beatenberg live before but I had one of those Chelsea Blakemore addictions; I didn’t think that I would like so many songs from their set, but I did. Bed on Bricks were surprisingly epic. They took to the stage quite like the ‘mini’ hurricane of rain and lightning that ended their performance early. There was just so much energy that I loved! The most surprising performance for me was Bastille’s performance. I mentioned that I wasn’t the greatest fan, in fact, I planned to stay the first fifteen minutes of their performance and then leave, but I ended up staying until the end. I was shocked to realise that I knew so many of their songs and I might have been overwhelmed to a point where my inner fangirl was screaming, ‘Oh my gosh! I can’t believe I’m hearing this live!’.
The crowd was one of my favourites
I have said that the crowd and the people around you make your party so I worried when I realised that 5FM was involved in the sponsoring and marketing of the event. I have nothing against the brand, I listen to 5FM when I drive and love the station but when huge companies sponsor events you get an extremely packed venue and many people who are just there because they can be and aren’t fans. That was my worry. But somehow the right people sold out the event. People were friendly and just up for having a great time. The venue worked out perfectly! Although the place was packed I never felt crowd-claustrophobic and the only time I realised that there were 15000 people there was when I took a step back and walked to the ends of the venue. One of the sweetest things was hearing how loudly the crowd was singing. I didn’t expect that so many fans would have turned up. I did observe one funny aspect of South African crowds here. You know those beach balls that are thrown into the crowd as play things and make the crowds look awesome in photos? They remain bouncing through the crowd with international crowds but South African crowds swallow them up after a few bounces. It really makes me laugh so much.
The weather was seemingly perfect
It was incredibly hot! In fact, some people were struck down with heat stroke and had to be taken to the ambulance for assistance. I can’t even imagine how many people got alcohol poisoning. Just think about it, you’re thirsty so you drink more alcohol (not water because you’re too cool) and the alcohol dehydrates you even further so you drink more and continue the cycle. My body went into environmental Sahara Desert shut-down mode. But all that heat generated a cooling rain storm and even though it interrupted Bed on Bricks performance it didn’t stop Bastille. The weather was somehow clued into making their performance incredible because the sun was back out, just in time for their performance and Bastille ended up playing into a South African sunset.
I can’t even gush enough about the logistics of this entire event. Seed Experiences have seriously set the bar for event management in an incredible way. I had a great time! Thank you!