Normally when you tell people you’re heading to Groovin, advice comes in thick and fast to rug up and wear wellies. But this weekend Bendigo put on an absolute belter.
Amongst the dust, with not a drop of rain in sight, hordes of facial-hair-sprouting, heat-stroke-defying, bucket-hat-wearing music lovers descended on the town’s Prince Of Wales Showgrounds to experience Groovin The Moo, fast becoming one of the country’s favourite music festivals.
Sticky Fingers brought their particular brand of indie-reggae-rock fusion to the crowded Channel V stage, matching the energy of The Preatures, who praised the day as a celebration of awesome Aussie music. Their cover of the Divinyls’ Boys In Town, first performed at triple j’s Beat The Drum earlier this year, is a perfect fit for lead singer Isabella Manfredi.
The UK’s You Me At Six turned it on. The band’s incredible frontman Josh Franceschi exclaimed, “That’s how the pommy world gets things done,” but ultimately Perth’s San Cisco, with a cheeky, upbeat set over at the Moolin Rouge stage, won out in numbers.
Canada’s lycra-loving electro darling Peaches soon followed, with Ball Park Music in all their geeky glory hot on her heels. BPM rocked out against a colourful backdrop featuring their enormous, and freakishly accurate, MyIdol heads, while their quick cover of The Rembrandts’ Friends theme I’ll Be There For You burst from the stage like a surprise little gift. Their own tracks She Only Loves Me When I’m There and 2011’s toe tapping It’s Nice To Be Alive won Best In Set.
Despite the initiative to save a dollar off your next drink with the return of a can (which is super cool, by the way), the venue and the crowd were well and truly messy by this point. The festival was full of drunk adult men wearing moo-cow onesies, and slightly offensive adult women wearing their cultural appropriation on their faces. Bindis are apparently the new “in” thing.
We couldn’t think of a more welcoming crowd for one of the superstars of the day, Charli XCX. The British pop singer/songwriter punched out hit after hit, with I Love It and Boom Clap setting her off in a thrusty, aggressive performance.
Over at the Moolin Rouge, Broods‘ funky, emotive set, led by Georgia Nott’s incredible stage presence, was without a doubt this reviewer’s performance of the day. The brother and sister duo from New Zealand took the day to another level, cementing their next big thing status with tracks like Mother & Father and L.A.F.
Wolfmother wound back the clock, delivering a set full of their older hits, which made you forget they were ever gone. The high-energy, rhyme spitting Hilltop Hoods slammed on to the stage with opener Chase That Feeling. The Nosebleed Section is still a huge crowd pleaser, but they brought the magic in sounds of Sia with I Love It and, of course, the ill-timed and perhaps poorly titled Cosby Sweater.
As great as they were, the crowds that left after the Adelaide hip-hop group wrapped should kick themselves for missing the wrap up from Aussie electro duo Flight Facilities, who at one point turned out all the lights to bask in a sea of lighters and iPhone screens. They had thousands of women dancing atop sore shoulders and punched out Crave You like it was the last time.
Groovin The Moo Bendigo 2015 was perfect. Perfect weather. Perfect music. Perfect Georgia Nott. It doesn’t get much better than this.
Groovin The Moo 2015 concludes in Maitland and Townsville this weekend.
Gallery: Groovin The Moo 2015, Bendigo / Photos: Nikki Williams