FOLD festival - Freak Out Lets Dance! And that's exactly what we did as Fulham Palace hosted London's debut Fold Festival last weekend organised by the front man of CHIC himself Mr Nile Rogers.
Having received the running list before arriving Friday I was not disappointed with the set up, each named artist was sandwiched between Chic featuring Nile Rodgers with Labyrinth and Beck headlining Friday and Saturday respectively.
The Sunday headliner slot of course was reserved for Chic themselves and they did not disappoint....But more on that later.
Friday night we arrive at Putney bridge tube station and with a quick walk across the road we are at the festival venue. Walking through the gates as the Thompson Twins' Tom Bailey finished the set we headed to the bar for a drink. Food and drinks were purchased via a prepaid card which required a £1 deposit and any amount you wanted to top up. Over the course of the weekend this proved to be invaluable. Having topped up at the start of each day we knew how much money we were spending and we didn't need to worry about fumbling around for change each time we went to get food or drink. Any money left on the card at the end of the festival was refunded at the top up tents. So winners all round!
After grabbing a drink we turned our attention to the stage to watch Chic featuring Nile Rodgers's first performance of the weekend, They belted out their hits Dance Dance Dance, Good times & Everybody dance before being joined by Alison Moyet her set included seminal classics spanning her own career as well as guest vocals along with the band. My personal favourite from the set was their rendition of 'Don't Go'. Following on after Moyet, Chic continued to play, and were joined by Labyrinth who closed the show for the first night, after coming to the festival straight from work we decided to leave during Labyrinth's headline set to beat the rush after the show. The close proximity to Putney bridge station made this ideal for an easy commute home after the show.
Regrettably I was unable to make Saturday's show, but Sunday's performances more than made up for this. The crowd seemed like it had doubled from that of Friday and the varying age groups were well and truly ready to party. As we wandered around the site deciding what to eat we found there was no bad vantage point or poor sound quality.
This for me was a huge positive as I felt I never missed out on any of the show regardless of where I was. That said within two minutes of being at the bar I had easily made my way back to the front of the stage ready to see the artists I had been waiting all weekend to see John Newman, and Angie Stone. With twenty minutes stage time each both acts energised the crowd into a party atmosphere ready for the headline act that was to follow. Chic featuring Nile Rodgers and John Newman preformed their latest collaboration 'Give me your Love' then Newman went straight into his singles 'Blame', 'Come And Get It' and 'Love Me Again' with that his time was up. CHIC continued to rock with the numbers one they had produced for other artists including Madonna's 'Like a Virgin', Duran Duran's 'Notorious' and Diana Ross' 'We Are Family', 'I'm Coming Out' and 'Upside Down', with Special guest Angie Stone running late after a mammoth journey from Chicago, Chic kept the party going with a few rarities. However this did not seem to phase Chic's loyal fan base who sang back every word of every song to the band until Stone arrived.
Stone did not let the long journey affect her singing and opened her set with 'No More Rain (in this cloud)' followed by 'I Wish I Didn't Miss You Anymore' two absolute classics. After her short cameo she left Chic to do what they do best and party on stage, with guests and friends alike. Chic returned for a thirty minute barrage of non-stop hits that had been showcased throughout the weekend which proved to be the greatest testament to the band and Rogers production back catalogue. The night was drawn to a close with a thunderous rendition of 'We Are Family' which brought the biggest sing-along of the weekend.
All in all Fold festival was great, Having been to many festivals before this one I was glad it did not feel overwhelming and was a lot more personal with acts engaging with the crowd , Fold is definitely one festival to check out next year and satisfied all of my musical 'Guilty Pleasures'.
latest on this festival
FOLD Fest London 2016 review
festival home page
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line-ups & rumours