Review: Victorious Festival 2015

Ray Davies Victorious

Temperamental Bank Holiday weather did not deter fans from seeing the likes of Ray Davies and Tinie Tempah turn out to packed crowds at Victorious Festival.

The Southsea-based festival returned for its 2nd incarnation on Southsea Common having previously been located at the Historic Dockyard in Portsmouth.

Over 100,000 tickets were shifted in the run up to this festival, which is gaining a reputation as one of the must-do independent festivals in the UK, along with the Cornish-held Leopallooza.

The Saturday’s main billings offered such delights as The Flaming Lips, Primal Scream and the aforementioned ‘Tinie’ who headlined the Castle Stage whilst the former complemented each other perfectly on the Main Stage.

A huge early highlight was Louis Berry, a 23 year old from Kirkby who fell somewhere between Miles Kane and Jake Bugg in the best possible way. Sharp guitars with a typical Liverpudlian vocal delivery means that Louis is most definitely one to watch in 2016.

Laura Mvula was the special guest for the afternoon slot on the Main Stage and her bright, soulful melodies did their best to enliven an already damp crowd.

A selection of hits from both Primal Scream and The Flaming Lips ensured that whilst the rain may have fallen (and fallen hard!) it was not in vain for the brave Hampshire locals who squelched their respective ways home through the mud in high spirits.

JOhnny Marr Victorious

A sunnier day was forecast for the Sunday and it delivered perfectly in time for the day’s special guests, Texas to run through the classics and get the masses warmed up for what was to come.

A veritable smorgasbord of indie delights awaited after dinner time (provided by the inimitable Pie & Vinyl) as Cast, We Are Scientists, Johnny Marr, The Sunshine Underground and yes, even The Darkness, wowed the crowds as plenty of people relived their teenage years through various eras and styles as the evening drew towards the absolute coup of a closing act that was Ray Davies.

There was a debate raging between whether Basement Jaxx or The Kinks front man would be the best option to catch (an envious choice) but in the end it was impossible to choose anything over seeing Waterloo Sunset performed by the man himself.

There are few artists that are instantly accessible that are still performing and Ray Davies is one of the select bunch as he took the biggest crowd of the weekend through his back catalogue both with The Kinks and as a solo act. It brought the curtain down on what was another boon for Victorious Festival and with early bird tickets on sale for just £20 a day for 2016, it is an absolute must for anyone in the south coast region.


Honourable Mentions

Justin from The Darkness doing his level best to keep the crowd onside whilst everyone waited for ‘that’ song.

The double act in the Watkins & Faux bar on the Saturday afternoon who mashed up everything from Elvis to Eminem.

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