Ivan Ooze wraps up his high-energy, double-fist-pump heavy set with, “You guys have been the fuckin’ gnarliest festival crowd we’ve played for.” Let’s be honest, it may be early afternoon, but ‘fuckin’ gnarly’ is pretty standard for Newy.
The menacing storm clouds provide the perfect backdrop for this Halloween party. Newcastle’s foreshore is littered with fairy lights, an impressive range of rides, food trucks and market stalls spruiking everything from cold drip coffee to craft beer. There’s a strong carnival vibe going on, aided by the array of spooky costumes and “Day of the Dead” skeleton faces scattered throughout the crowd.
After an early fix of Aussie Hip-Hop, Asta keeps the dance floor riled up with her bright and bubbly 80s synth sounds, dropping My Heart Is On Fire and super fun fresh track Stay Cool. Her energy is as fierce as dance moves – a little sorcerer-esque and perfect for Halloween. Dynamite goes off (pun intended) despite some unfortunate tech issues that cropped up throughout the day.
By the time it’s Tkay Maidza’s turn the party is already at peak frenzy. In her red cape and overalls, she flies across the stage slaying Wishes and Uh Huh. Feet are stomped (like a Brontosaurs) before Imprint, Switch Lanes and M.O.B close out her killer set.
The rain arrives with the The Jungle Giants, though frontman Sam Hales DGAF, “Come on Newcastle, let’s get fucking dusted.” It’s impossible not to get your groove on the infectious beats of Skin To Bone, She’s a Riot and I Am What You Want Me To Be. These guys give it their absolute all, keeping things kooky and dancing the rain away.
After dark, things get next-level cray with Birds of Tokyo. Was great to see everyone channel their inner 2008 Emo for a particularly rousing rendition of Silhouettic, closely followed by Plans and Wild at Heart. Damn Ian Kenny can belt out a banger. New tracks Puzzle and Anchor get a run, before it’s time to crack the lighters out for Lanterns.
The ethereal and haunting vocals of Tyrone Lindqvist provide the perfect close to the night. There is so much love for RÜFÜS with You Were Right and Sundream going down a treat. Things take a slightly more sultry turn as Rendezvous “goes out to anyone looking to get lucky tonight” before the boys drop their latest track Like an Animal.
It all starts to get a little surreal as Tyrone notes, “So it’s Halloween and this song is about Zombies”. Watching a bunch of people in creepy af costumes lose their nut to Tonight after a very long day at a festival is pretty amazing. I don’t care how good your Halloween party was – This That festival nailed it.