Before the main Roskilde Festival site opened to campers international press were treated to an intimate concert in the International Press Village with three bands that the festival are supporting as part of Roskilde Rising, a twelve month initiative for Nordic bands or artists which aims to accelerate their careers forward. The International Press Village, sheltered by trees and a wooden stage draped with fairy lights with a stream trickling underneath resembles someone’s back garden on a summer’s day. The emotional, falsetto sounds of Blaue Blume suited the fairytale surroundings perfectly. Lead singer Jonas Smith has a beautifully unique voice which you will quickly fall in love with.
Heimat lifted the energy with enthusiastic folk music which shares a similarity to Mumford and Sons. The Awesome Welles ended the event with punchy, alternative rock which could easily transfer to a large festival stage. The three bands chosen for the event highlighted the multitude of musical talent that Denmark has to offer.
- Niomi Fraser
Top of the bill after the Stones was no doubt OutKast’s inaugural performance on the Orange Stage. After the rising concerts in Press Village we rushed to join the hordes of festival crowds in order to secure a good spot in one of the four front pits leading up the stage. Backed by a couple of dressed-to-the-teeth, ebony-angels Outkast delivered a superior performance with something for everyone. The shout outs for the die-hard fans who came for the cadillac songs mixed up with tunes like Ms. Jackson and the rest of the sing-alongs, made a diverse and convincing act. All in all a worthy opening of this year’s Roskilde Festival.
- Hans Christian
Taking to the Apollo stage at 5.15pm for the first proper gig of the whole festival, Lunice put on a great show: interspersing his own material with plenty of recent bangers, including Lil Durk’s ‘Dis Ain’t What U Want’, Drizzy’s ‘We Made It’ and ‘Levels’ by Meek Mill. The small crowd went wild, with a mini mosh pit forming in the centre, multiple bucket hats bouncing in unison. (Bucket hats seem to really popular in Denmark; the last time I saw this many was at a Yung Lean gig!) While this gig would have likely attracted a far larger crowd at 1 or 2 in the morning; Lunice used his early slot to get everyone hyped for the excitement to come later that night!
The Rolling Stones
It felt like a homecoming. In front of an estimated 100,000 people, Mick, Keith, Charlie and Ronnie took to the Orange Stage; the defining symbol of the festival featuring a massive orange canopy that is an updated version of the original canopy that was designed for the Stones’ summer tour of 1976. Looking around the audience I could tell this was definitely an older than average Roskilde crowd; in my part of the crowd I spotted lots of incredibly excited middle aged couples and friends. The Stones themselves seemed just as ecstatic to be performing, rampaging through an excellent two and a half hour set featuring all the old classics, some newer cuts and a healthy dose of audience interaction. A cynic might say that some of the longer jams were a tad self-indulgent; but with a combined total age of 280 it would be cruel to deny them a chance to get a bit carried away!
- Charles Gillies
Although Bastille’s set clashed with The Rolling Stones, the crowd turnout for their 11pm show was impressive. Lead singer Dan Smith repeatedly expressed his disbelief at the reaction from the crowd. The audience responded well to both album tracks and singles but the show nicely built up to a finale of ‘Of the Night’ and ‘Pompeii’. The crowd that spilled out of the Arena stage chanted ‘eh eh o, eh o’ long after the band had left the stage.
Is a great concert experience merely a question of expectations vs. actuality? Maybe because few were already familiar with the frenetic techno/house cumbia style music of columbian Systema Solar, their Avalon appearance turned out as by far the most exhuberant performance this first day of Roskilde. In no time the avalon tent was transformed from a sleepy hang-out to an absolute jam-packed ghetto-rave. Visuals depicting scenes and mythical symbols saliently south-american and techy added to the uncompromising aesthetics of this act. I can say with confidence that Avalon was the place to be for anyone not taking part in the RS nostalgia.