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The Downs festival 2019 review
Bristol's largest one-day music festival welcomed an outstanding line-up Saturday 31st August, with the weather holding out and the crowds in high spirits, it was certainly a day to remember. Our resident blogger Love for Bristol went along and has given us an insight in to her day at The Downs Festival.
Walking around the event, the use of space was great, with lots of areas to sit down, a good amount of bars and toilets meaning the queues were bearable which makes a nice change at a festival. With a special area dedicated to kids, various fairground rides and even a mini-golf area, these added extras made families very welcome.
Aloha 65 cocktail bar pop-up stood out with its colourful Hawaiian theme, serving up its unique natural liqueur infused with fresh pineapple, lemon, ginger, scotch bonnet and chillies, all made here in Bristol. Prices for cocktails started at £4.00 which was really reasonable, they even served slushy cocktails.
Heading to the main stage Neneh Cherry's incredible voice created a feel-good, nostalgic atmosphere, the sound from the main stage was spectacular with viewing potential perfect from every angle. The festival began to fill up with even more people, perhaps arriving in time for Bristol's own IDLES. IDLES took to the stage giving an unbelievable performance filled with energy and passion making the crowd unite ferociously, with many bellowing out every lyric back to frontman Joe Talbot. Both guitarists at different stages headed out into the audience impressively playing to the excited, supportive crowd. IDLES hour-long set showcased how important and talented this Bristol band truly is, leaving everyone with a lasting impression.
Over on The Avon Stage, drum n' bass favourites High Contrast had everyone dancing with hits like "If We Ever" creating an uplifting rave-like atmosphere. The Avon Stage was another big music stage with excellent sound dedicated to dance, electronic and hip-hop acts.
The Information Stage was a whole area in itself with a massive indoor seating area, bar and a small tipi like stage in the middle, this was then the Late Night Live area. All the live music was curated by IDLES so this was definitely not to be missed. Ditz band followed suit from IDLES with their post-punk rock sound and Heavy Lungs absolutely killed their set with many people saying it was their highlight of the whole event.
Back over on the main stage iconic artist Grace Jones wowed everyone with her extraordinary outfits, use of the stage and exceptional voice that is still as good as ever. Closing the festival was legendary RnB artist Lauryn Hill, fans eagerly gathered awaiting for her to arrive. She turned up and put on a fantastic performance with 90s favourites from her debut solo album "Misseducation" of Lauryn Hill, with "Doo Woop That Thing" having everyone singing out loud. Lauryn Hill closed on the ever-popular Fugees track, "Killing Me Softly", ending this incredibly special and diverse Bristol festival on a wonderful high.