There are many things I like and one of them is going to a festival for the first time. In its second year Les Fest, it wasn’t completely brand new but this fledgling festival is still definitely the new kid on the block. It was also the second time I had crossed the boarders into Scotland, but with the line-up promised who wouldn’t want to take the jaunt from London? It may be a really long way to travel, but I’ve been further and compared to some overseas festivals, it’s practically local….so Scotland, I was on my way.
Via Newcastle and a 6 ½ hour coach journey to meet up with some other festival regulars – the first bonus part of Les Fest; it is already attracting the core regulars. Recommendation for those planning on going next year – book a train 6 weeks in advance for the cheap rates because sitting on a coach for 6 ½ hours in your new rocks, followed by a van journey the next day can leave your legs in need of stretching for a few days.
So, after a leisurely morning we packed the van and heading up north to bonnie Scotland and it was really an easy drive and not difficult to find the venue either. Plus there was the beautiful Scottish countryside to look at. Despite the rain on the way up the weather held off nicely to allow us to pitch our tents – after selecting a patch of poo free grass (not all the field had this…I guess we were just drawn to it). Before pitching the tent I made a quick run to the main stage to watch a bit of Diementia’s set. Due to interview them in an hour or so I had to see what they could deliver. I could only watch for a short time so I could set up and get to my other interviews, but damn they delivered! True, our Scotti is part of the band but believe me that doesn’t equate to any favours in my book; the fact I’m mentioning them means I liked them (thank goodness!). It was also good to catch a band at that time as my new tent took rather longer than expected to pitch so it was straight to interview Achren at 6.30 instead. I suggest you have a listen to that interview as you’ll see how the weekend kicked off with madness. Always a pleasure boys.
After this it was time to check out what the facilities were….and by that I mean food. Where was the food? This nights’ food had to be gained over a communal Planetmosh dinner at the tapas bar. Next it was Achren again, but this time to watch them on stage. I haven’t seen them perform for ages and I forgot how good they are. They deliver a real energy and presence and their set allowed you to headbang, jump, there was dancing (of sorts), especially with the new song they threw in – that just had everything including drums that just pulled you in and carried you along and the cheers from the crowd really reflected this. Next up was Virus who provided an incessant onslaught. Also receiving loud cheers from the audience they amped this up with a cover of ‘I would walk 500 miles’, which was just superb!
Following this the atmosphere was really and thick with anticipation of Evile. I’d only ever seen them on the main stage at BOA and I have to say their set that night was a real eye opener for me. A mate prefers seeing them on a larger stage but the closeness of the main stage at Les Fest allowed them get to every person in the room. Receiving chants of ‘Evile’ before they even came on stage they started gentle and then blasted their way through their set. The crowd were attentive throughout and their fake last song of Thrasher was a great way to end it – if it was the end as after a very short break they came back on stage to deliver more. The amount of headbanging and deafening cheers from this set was awesome and I’m now officially sold on Evile and can’t wait till their next gig. It was a good job this was the last set of the night as I would pity the band that had to follow that. Instead of was time for some after party shenanigans and maybe a few hours sleep before day two of a festival that was shaping up quite nicely.