V Festival has been set upon by young festival goers all in pursuit of a good time. The area has a feel of a cheap fairground and is very brash. The festival is aimed at the young and the line-up reflects this with popular you tube artists heading the bill. Gone are artists such as 'The Killers' and 'The Foo Fighters' and in with the young hip things. It's a shame really as years ago the event used to command respect.
This has been an amazing year for Rick Astley, with his new album 50 going straight to number one, pipping Tom O Dell to the top spot. He does a very varied set of new and old hits. The crowd enjoy the new hits but it's the old classics, 'Together forever' and of course the unmistakable 'Never gonna give you up' that really get the punters going. Not an easy feat as this track was released in 1987 when most of them weren't even born.
John released his highly anticipated second album late last year, his first single from it 'Come and get it' scoring him a number one. John attracted a large crowd, especially considering the popular Bastille were playing at the same time on the main stage. He put on a colourful, energetic performance, dancing along as he belted out his hits. There was a particularly poignant moment when John debuted a track that he wrote about his returned brain tumour. This was greeted with the required respect.
I was looking forward to seeing Justin Beiber live. A former critic, my opinion changed after listening to his new album 'Purpose'. Unfortunately, I was disappointed. 'Sorry, I'm a bit hungover' Justin explained. He seemed to mime through the majority of his set, occasionally dancing when he felt like it. I actually saw Justin fans leaving, saying 'this is boring'. In fact, towards the end of the set, the crowd was probably less than half then when it started. There were some memorable moments such as stripped bare acoustic performance with a guitar. However, let's hope that Justin brings back the enthusiasm when the 'Purpose' tour returns to the UK in October.
This was a surprise highlight for me, not being overly familiar with Katy's newer material. Katy put in a very energetic, pitch perfect performance in perfect sync with her dancers. Not at all what I expected from a drum and bass artist. The attendees were loving every beat and it was one of the strongest reactions that I saw all weekend. By the time she dropped 'When I step into the room' and 'When the light go off' the atmosphere was electrifying.
Arriving to the stage in the skimpiest of outfits, Little Mix performed a selection of their vast array of hits. The show was very fast paced, hugely choreographed and great fun. The girls have been going for five years now and it easy to see why. Rather than disappear into X Factor obscurity, they have gone from strength to strength. The crowd really enjoy hit after hit and the girls finish with their biggest hit 'Magic potion'.
The final headline set was from the mighty Rihanna. I must admit, I was expecting to be wowed but I was pleasantly surprised. Starting with a selection of songs from her latest album 'Anti'. Considering the album is not regarded as one of her strongest, the tracks received a positive response. Vocally, her performance is very strong, every note pitch perfect. However, it the tracks at the end of her set, her big hitters that received the desired response. These included, 'Diamonds', we found love' and the mighty 'Umbrella'. These songs help you remember why she is the successful 200 million plus selling artist she is today.
V will always be a haunt for the young trendy things and all the time they provide the artist that attract them, there will be a festival for them.
latest on this festival
V Festival Chelsmford 2017 review