Jess and Henry power teamed our Oppikoppi 2016 coverage. Jess writes a review that will blow your mind and Henry has created an incredible set of images that will give you FOMO.

Oh Oppi, I miss you so much and even though we’ve only been apart a day, it feels like months. Every time I close my eyes I see you, my ears still ring with all the wonderful sounds which characterise you, and I even miss your flaws. Is this what a breakup feels like? If so, I think we should get back together.

I’m sitting here, post-Oppikoppi, trying to find the right words to adequately describe just how incredible this past weekend has been, whilst simultaneously coughing up what appears to be most of Northam’s dust (and people say I can’t multitask).

With a stellar local and international line-up that had me feeling a lot like a kid before Christmas, Oppikoppi 22: For the Lovely Young Taken to the Unsea promised to be one of the highlights of my year and it certainly did not disappoint.Oppikoppi-2016-370The build up to this year’s Oppikoppi seemed to last for an eternity as everyone waited impatiently for the call to The Unsea and the subsequent great trek to Northam to begin. As I waited my mind was plagued by a mass of unanswered questions: Would Grassy Spark play Waste of Time? Would Yelawolf be good live? Would I fall and slide halfway down the koppie and knock three people over like last year? Would the port-a-loos be better this year? Should I buy Bio-plus or Berocca energy sachets? Friday the 5th of August just could not come soon enough.Oppikoppi-2016-1070Arriving at Oppi on the Friday, I spent most of the morning re-familiarising myself with the labyrinth affectionately known as Mordor; because no matter how well you think you know the path to your campsite the bleak reality is that when you try find it in the dark at 2am you are going to get lost. Friday afternoon was spent finding friends and checking out some of the acts including Bongeziwe Mabandla, The Tcs and Cs and De Wallen.
Sunset on Friday heralded a drop in temperature which resulted in me piling on more jackets than I had previously believed was possible and had me nervously checking for frostbite every so often. Luckily for everyone there were some absolutely amazing sets from the likes of Nakhane Toure, Bye Beneco, Thieve, Chambers, The Tazers, The Plastics and Bittereinder to keep the cold at bay.

Saturday dawned along with an absurd amount of excitement on my part for the eagerly anticipated OppiBoosh, which along with some very snazzy decorations, brought the much loved Boosh vibes to the Bruilhof Stage along with an epic line-up including Adelle Nqeto, The Hip Replacements, We are Charlie and Shortstraw to name a few. Saturday night was filled with an obscene amount of tequila and a line-up which included some seriously awesome sets from Nonku Phiri, Ricky Rick, Aking and Grassy Spark. Fokofpoliesiekar’s highly anticipated midnight set at the Main Stage had everyone feeling very nostalgic as the teenager in them went wild.Oppikoppi-2016-335Sunday morning had everyone (especially me) feeling a little bit worse for wear, but luckily there’s no better way to cure a hangover than to listen to some great music, which is exactly what I did. I spent most of the day wandering from stage to stage and enjoying some fantastic tunes from Josh Kempen, Tristan Coetzee, Go Barefoot and Sol Gems. The highlights of my Sunday were Petite Noir’s Main Stage performance, which was incredible and had some of the most enthralling visuals I’ve ever seen for a live performance, and Yelawolf who gave one of the most energetic, exciting and all-round mind-blowing performances I have ever seen. Epic sets from Tommy Gun, Haezer, Kid Robot and Ang at the Redbull stage took us well into Monday morning and ensured that Oppikoppi ended on a high note.

Massive congratulations and thanks must go to the organisers of Oppikoppi for pulling off such a fantastic festival year after year, with this year certainly being no exception. Oppikoppi 22 not only offered us a fantastic line-up, but also an incredible diversity in its acts, bringing us our old favourites whilst simultaneously showcasing a variety of new and exciting acts for everyone to experience.Oppikoppi-2016-460One of the greatest things about Oppikoppi is that it stays with you long after you leave, whether it be in the form of a new band you saw and just had to buy their album, the new friends you made, the recurring port-a-loo nightmares you can’t seem to shake and especially the dust which stubbornly clings to your hair like Rose clung to the wardrobe in Titanic.

Oppikoppi 22 was one of the best festival weekends I’ve had in a long time and I cannot wait for next year to see what Oppikoppi 23 has in store for us.

Some of my personal highlights of Oppi 2016 were:

  • Nakhane Toure’s dancing
  • The Plastics’ cover of “Strawberry Fields Forever”
  • Schalk Bezuidenhout’s sweaters
  • Petite Noir’s set and the unbelievable visuals
  • Yelawolf’s set
  • OppiBoosh
  • Accidentally showering in my jeans
  • Hearing a mashup of “Smells Like Teen Spirit” and “The Final Countdown” at the Top Bar.
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