Live Review: St Kilda Festival (10.02.13)

The St Kilda Festival is a relevant piece of history as well as merriment and pleasure. Each year sparkles newsworthy debates that it will end but these scares disappear in a blink of an eye and any wonder, the festival attracted 400,000 revelers in 2013 alone. Bottle shops no doubt do a roaring trade (although IGA is, one could say, smart and didn’t sell alcohol on the day due to liquor rules for the festival) as does the local weekly market and not to forget the other market stalls placed around St Kilda promulgating their wares (Wild Seed and XVI just to name a couple great clothing stalls).

Check out motor bike displays, volley ball action on the beach, the amusement rides that may make you see your lunch for the second time, the colourful clothing worn by the public, dogs galore and lets not forget the main acts – the music, is just some of the highlights!

I managed to see Dirt River Radio who sang with plenty of roar and enthusiasm before a chock-o-block crowd that bellowed and whistled with absolute devotion. Quarry Mountain Dead Rats gave us some excellent blue grass music fusing into the modern day sound, a great band to dance and sing-a-long too. Take a walk around the various stalls such as RSPCA, drink free Lipton Iced Tea (do you like pina colada?!), get your face painted and learn how to build a bird nesting box. Discover the vaults under the Esplanade, seven former shops that are reminiscent literally of the underground, hardly smelling like they were part of the hustle and bustle in the 1890’s and then you could take part in the Games Tent, learn Latin dancing or leave the kids at the Zumba learning stage.

The weather held off and when the sun was out it was rather warm but take the sun away and with no clouds to blanket in the warmth, the cool did reign after sunset.

The main stage heralded some pearler acts like Ash Grunwald, Pez, Blue Juice and the surprise sunset act (which was quite possibly the lamest surprise so far) The Cat Empire, whose fans decorated the grass area in their thousands. I admit to not being a huge fan of the later and took this opportunity to look around the festival some more whilst most people flocked to the main stage. The Prince of Wales looked amazing as the seating spewed out onto the road and crates donned the area for seats (pity it can’t always be this way) and buskers gained their fortune and glory along Fitzroy Street as hundreds gathered to see men climbing poles and walking on nails.

Leaving St Kilda I could hear the hum of the crowds blended with the sounds of the music and I can’t help but think how lucky I am to be able to enjoy all the free entertainment in my local town.