My World Tour Winner Takes on ‘Splendour in the Grass’

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Earlier this year, our friends at Universal Music picked two winners, Bec and Dan for the My World Tour competition.

They have already travelled around the world to visit and interview headline acts at the Coachella Festival in California, T in the Park in Scotland and Latitude Festival in England.

What an awesome life!

This July saw the two music fans head to Queensland for the very popular ‘Splendour in the Grass’.

Check out Bec’s blog entry below for her experience heading to Woodford Queensland, flying V Australia’s domestic arline Virgin Blue….

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My World Tour has sent us to enough festivals to know how to do things properly. Transport, camping, clothing, packing – we are now seasoned professionals.

2010 Splendour in the Grass was our most recent adventure. For the past nine years this winter revelry has taken place around July/August at Belongil Fields, Byron Bay, which is a killer 8-hr drive from Sydney. This year however organisers have temporarily relocated the festival even further north to Woodford in Queensland’s south-east hinterland.

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Surrounded by natural bush, this pristine rural valley was manic on Thursday night and Friday morning as eager campers arrived in preparation for three solid days of music, mud and mayhem. As almost every man and his dog arrived by car; the wait to get onto the site took four hours. Twitter was running hot with people posting profanities about the ludicrous wait was and all I could do was laugh. We were wise enough to take alternate option – flying up, staying off site and making use of the regular shuttle buses that ran from 15 different surrounding locations including Brisbane, the Glass House Mountains, Kilcoy, Noosa and, where we stayed, Mooloolaba!
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Leaving Sydney on Friday morning our flight was at 9am. Virgin Blue in flight entertainment kept me amused the entire way so the 1.5 hr trip felt like nothing. Team that up with the apple and cinnamon muffin I devoured for breakfast when the stewards came past and I was set. Splendour here we come!

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Hotel check in was not until 2pm so we had plenty of time to kill at local cafés and I can highly recommend Nude Deli café, situated along the Esplanade, for an amazing feed and some aromatic coffee.

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We also had a chance to soak up some rays on the beautiful beach and enjoy the warmth. I think QLD is on a different seasonal cycle to its NSW counterparts because I’m telling you it was summer!  Hot, sunny and the water temperature – just perfect. Take a weekend off and get away from Sydney’s dreary weather; you WILL thank me for it.

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Checking in to the beautiful Mantra we quickly changed and made our way out to the festival. Although the trip out to the site took just over an hour the view was picturesque, especially as we passed the Glass House Mountains. Aside from the lines for the usual festival check points it was a breeze getting in. We had clearly chosen the best way to get to Splendour. The rain held off, mud was minimal and temperatures reached a top of 28 degrees on the Saturday.

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Aside from the incredible line-up Splendour is also known for the unique stages and stalls you discover as you explore the intricate site and this year was no exception. Wine bars, foam parties, art installations, a mini shopping mall and even an on site day spa, this event is in a world of its own.  Don’t even get me started on how extravagant the food on offer was, I’ll just say festival food has come a long way!

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The festival itself was amazing and the site really showcased Australia’s beautiful landscape.

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Getting home each night was quick, easy and logistically well organised. Sunday night we were back at the hotel and out like a light. As we made our way back to Sunshine Coast Airport on Monday for our flights home we were listening to radio presenters warning of a 6 hrs wait to get out of the festival site!!! While some people were still in that daunting line we were already at home relaxing and missing the warm weather.

Friday
Black Rebel Motorcycle Club known for their immense garage rock tunes, Friday afternoon’s performances showcased a stellar collection of the band’s finest work. As lead vocals were alternated throughout their set the Amphitheatre was sent into frenzy with crowd favourites like Weapon of Choice, Ain’t No Easy Way and Whatever Happened To My Rock and Roll.

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Dance punk legends LCD Soundsystem, fronted by the enthrallingly talented James Murphy. With three critically acclaimed albums under their belt Friday’s set was chock-a-block with hits. On stage the NY-based rockers were absolutely hypnotic, playing with an effortless ease and going above and beyond any vocal limitations. Opening with Drunk Girls the melodic electro beats of All My Friends, I Can Change and Daft Punk Is Playing At My House soon took flight

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Saturday
Alternative dance masters Delphic ensured the gathered horde at the Mix Up tent soon became a sweaty mass. The English four piece blew a lot of minds at this year’s Splendour in the Grass with their modern dance rock that would make New Order proud.

Throughout the day, several proposals and “I love you” to Florence Welch could be seen sprawled across clothing. And she earned it.

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With stunning vocals and unique costume Florence and The Machine quickly became a Splendour Highlight. Welsh’s performance was powerfully delicate and she – mysterious yet ever so breathtaking. The gratitude of her fans evident as one stood upon someone’s shoulders, shirtless and with the image of Lungs (album cover) painted across his chest and screaming the lyrics ever so passionately back at Florence.  Opening with Drumming Song and closing with Kiss With a Fist Welch was, as always, immaculate to watch.

With the slightest of introductions The Strokes opened their set New York City Cops off their 2001 debut album which then paved the way for a solid collection of major hits including Soma, Sometimes and You Only Live Once. Gripping the mic with both hands the showmanship of Julian Casablancas was applaudable, he and his band untouchably cool.

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Sunday
Performing in matching black tracksuit jackets, Miike Snow were sounding like a cool version of Calvin Harris with way more street cred.  MWTMiikesnowTheir set combines highly infection electronic elements with intricate danceable melodies. As a purple/grey come off the stage later in the set, this was the perfect time for Silvia to finally drop, creating a euphoric and surreal vibe that pulsated through the gathered horde. This song extended to a delicious seven-minutes before the band closed with hugely popular Animal.

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