Wireless brings out the big hitters on Sunday

Wireles 2012 review

By Lawrence Wheeler | Published: Tue 10th Jul 2012

around the festival site (Sunday 2)

Wireless Festival 2012

Friday 6th to Sunday 8th July 2012
Hyde Park, London, W2 2UH, England MAP
£49.50 for Friday, both Saturday, and Sunday sold out
Daily capacity: 30,000

As I arrived at Wireless on the final day I was drawn towards the bandstand stage by a young girl rapping with a flow that could make a lot of grown MCs cry. To my surprise she then belted out a muted down version of 'Pumped Up Kicks', I was more than impressed. Her backing band played the track beautifully, the guitarist filling out any empty space in the track with some technically brilliant riffs, and for a girl that could rap the way she did, the track was sung with really quite a powerful voice. As always the track proved to be a crowd pleaser, and everyone around stand gave the band a resounding applause. After a couple of their own tracks, All of which equally impressive, the set ended. They announced themselves to be Skyline. Honestly, these are a group I'd look out for in the future, they definitely have the potential to be something really special.

As soon as their set was finished all I could hear was bass and cheering, and instantly I knew that this had to be Flux Pavilion creating a scene. I rushed over to the Pepsi Max tent to be welcomed by a sea of people, blinding lights, and an amazing dubstep remix of the instantly recognisable 'Gold Dust'. His whole set followed in the same vein, remixes of songs that everyone knows with those huge beats that Flux is so well renowned for, dropping at the end of each track and introducing the next with a force that was the musical equivalent of being knocked off your feet. Coupled with an incredible lightshow that matched the whole set beat for beat, the tent filled with an atmosphere that was almost palpable, a must see for all the dubstep aficionados out there.

around the festival site (Sunday 2)
Next up it was Labrinth; he was certainly my first surprise of the day. Having not been a massive fan of his previously, I wasn't expecting much from his live show, however he proved otherwise. Playing both the keyboard and guitar during his set with ease he soon proved his worth as a musician, and this, alongside his larger than life persona up on stage certainly made his set one worth watching. Big beats and a huge sound live finally culminated in him releasing 'Earthquake' onto the crowd like a tour de force.

Rizzle Kicks were another highlight on the main stage that day, Bouncy, fun, and energetic are the least that can be said about seeing these guys perform live. Tracks such as 'Mama Do The Hump' and 'Down With The Trumpets', accompanied by, of course, a multitude of massive sounding trumpets, were always set to be sure crowd pleasers. They had everybody skanking like an early 90's Ska concert, but they really pulled the hat out of the bag with a dubstep remix of the James Bond theme, and a Rock version of the White Stripes anthem 'Seven Nation Army'. A fantastic and most importantly fun set from the Brit School duo.

Jessie J
Now the pop music begun, it was time for Jessie J, once again, not usually my type of thing, but the fact that she refuses to do a show unless she’s allowed to sing live has always held my respect, and well deserved it was. Beginning with a huge sounding rock rendition of 'Do It Like A Dude' started off the high standard that her set maintained throughout. Her resonating voice really shone through during her set, showing her talents as a singer first and foremost. Every song she played, from covers of 80's tracks to her own album tracks, were re-imagined to give it a much larger, live feel. Even in between tracks she gave every song a real weight and meaning when talking to the crowd; every song actually meant something to her, making her in my mind easily the most endearing artist I saw that day.

Calvin Harris
Easily my favourite act of the day had to be Calvin Harris. Every hit from 'Love In A Hopeless Place' to 'I'm Not Alone' was played, and he even included remixes of a few other favourites such as Swedish House Mafia's hit 'Save The World'. He had the Pepsi Max tent filled to capacity, and a good couple of thousand people outside the tent dancing in the mud watching the big screen. The atmosphere, coupled with an amazing set of intricate background animations, an incredibly charismatic dj controlling the crowd like an orchestra conductor, and a huge array of smoke and confetti canons at the both the beginning and the end of the set, made for not only one hell of a show, but quite possibly the biggest extravaganza of the festival full stop.

Finally we had Rihanna, and even though once again, although I wouldn't call myself a fan, she put on a genuinely enjoyable set. Walking out onto an Egyptian themed stage with an array of excellent backing dancers the crowd was already in hysterics before she even started singing. Starting off her set with the instantly recognisable 'Only Girl In The World' accompanied by huge tribal drum beats only aided to boost the atmosphere and had everyone in the crowd singing along. By the time 'Umbrella' came around it was a treat to see that a few thousand people had come prepared and brought their own Umbrellas to put up during the track, just concreting how enjoyable the whole set was. Ending with 'We Found Love', a fireworks display, and a barrage of confetti and giant Rihanna Balloons being fired far into the crowd; the weekend ended in epic fashion, perfectly rounding off a great weekend of music.

review by: Lawrence Wheeler

photos by: Lawrence Wheeler

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