What a Bank Holiday weekend and as always the sun was on full heat to match the switched on party vibes. We arrived at Damyns Hall Aerodrome in Upminster on Saturday 26th May to an already heaving crowd, queues looked respectable (in the sense that there were no long ting lines in sight) and the place was awash with colour; we’re talking multi coloured flags, bright signs, glitter, sequins, lanterns, bunting and exotic palm trees… way to go to make us feel some sense of being in a different world rather than being in our local park with all it’s greyness.


For me this year’s We Are Fstvl was the best organised I had every witnessed, for one I actually found the VIP area this year and I was impressed. It was special enough with it’s very own stage that quite happily would have kept Very Important People in that one spot (and we bet there were a few culprits) and the feel was relaxed yet refined with it’s many cabana’s and beds dotted around with plentiful food and drink options.

Time to check out We Are Festivals’ newest recruit, introducing the BassJam stage brought to us by GRM DAILY and jeeeez did it not disappoint even if I did miss a few of the faves like my size Big Shaq… you just know he smashed it with “Man’s Not Hot” and “Man don’t dance,” plus Lethal B and Kojo Funds but real talk we easily could have stayed at this stage for the entire day. So who did we see? Mostack didn’t hold back, this was no PG ting but instead they had an army of revellers shouting out “liar, liar, liar,” and song so hot, the one and only “What I Wanna” that got a REEEEELOAD and pretty much summed up how everyone was feeling at that stage. Rude Kid, Sub Focus and Sasasas rounded up a Grime filled and bad bassline mix of artists here and although we missed out on the UK Grimes equivalent to Jason Derulo, we’re talking Donae’O (just in terms of him hooking you with his blooming catchy name jingle) we did however get the chance to speak with him upstage but we’re not gonna lie, he was a big gutted we missed his set. He must have known we would have brought that energy no diggity no doubt!

Know who else is a sure fired party starter and could actually make you rave for a full on 24 hours, that’s if We Are Festival allowed it?! That would be our king of Garage and club classics DJ EZ and we will admit with no glimmer of shame that we ran over there to see the man in action. Seriously guys, he is somebody that you need to see live if you haven’t. We caught him over at the Terminal which has been a massive hit since it cropped up a few years ago and this year they welcomed back Hannah Wants, as well as setting off jaw dropping confetti cannon explosions as Sigma, My Nu Leng and Gorgon City spun their biggest hits and unmissable mixes!

A surprise spot that we genuinely loved was brought to us by Desperados (name drop right there, does that mean I get free drinks for life? No.) Well regardless of my favourite tequila flavoured beer or not this hide out was known as the Club House and the DJ inside was playing some ultimate throwback jams and current tracks… they even had that obligatory camera person that forces you to have a picture to show how banging the club is. We loved the Kopparberg Outsider for it’s beachy vibes and Circo Loco for it’s open space, lazer’s and it’s non stop House and EDM tunes!  

A late discovery was Glitterbox which reignited some energy as people got all RuPaul on that sh*t, belting out classics like Cece Peniston’s “Finally.” There might have been a few divas in there but all in all people were singing like they weren’t afraid to belt a note or three… we just wish we had found that stage earlier. I also want to shout the food vendors and the bar staff out as food was top notch and the drinks were being served really quickly. I think my only suggestion would be to have a line up app as I’ve never bought a lanyard at We Are Festival, or for any festival in a long while for that matter, I can’t abide people asking to look at it 24/7 but flip that and once I’ve got that dutch courage I’ll ask you, your mate, your mum and your dog.

There aren’t many festivals that I would say let’s buy a ticket for next year straight away but We Are Festival is and if you were there or it’s the second or third time that you’ve missed out then you need to register for 2019 right now! Go to https://www.wearefstvl.com/thank-you/


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