Keeping with the tradition of Irish bank holiday weather the rain finally caught up with Indiependence on Sunday. Which thankfully did nothing to dampen spirits. An afternoon set from Solar Taxi in the Big Top allows festivalgoers to take shelter with the added bonus of some pleasing music. Their set is a live showcase of debut album ‘Broken Brother’s Secret Bells’ and features the likes of ‘Zodiac’ and ‘The Fool’.
Corner Boy, a band who earned their festival slot through recent success in the Red Bull Bedroom Jam, played to a packed out Bier Hall. With their blend of Bluegrass, Americana and Folk it’s hard not to draw comparisons between frontman, and band founder, Michael D’Arcy and Marcus Mumford. The hand-clapping, foot-stamping set is jammed with pop hits in the making such as ‘Morning Morning’, ‘Let’s Hit The Road’, and the more subtly appealing ‘Move To Paris’. Judging from the crowd, strong media presence and raw talent it’s fair to surmise that these Corner Boys are destined for something special.
Like the festival itself, Windings aren’t ones to rest on their laurels and churn out the same set gig after gig. The Sunday evening set, although only forty-five minutes in length, catered for every facet of the Windings Support. From the gargantuan ten minute opener ‘Sun In My Bones’, to something a bit older with ‘The Hassle’ and with even some newer stuff in the shape of ‘Blade Rubber’ it’s fair to say that no one was left out. This loud, sweaty, head banging set carried all the ferocity of a headline gig and was easily one of the weekend’s top performances.
If there was a reward for shock performance of the weekend then Paddy Casey would undoubtedly be walking away with gold. It’s not that people were unfamiliar with Casey or his songs. Hits such as ‘Saints and Sinners’ and ‘The Lucky One’ have graced the Irish radio waves for years now. The surprise factor came from the Dubliners sheer ability to work a crowd. And by crowd I mean the jam-packed, bursting at the seams Big Top stage. Casey’s semi-time travelling set list traversed his four previous albums and delivered the weekend’s largest sing-song’. Popular and slightly unorthodox covers included Blackstreet’s ‘No Diggity’ and The Jungle Book’s ‘I Want To Be Like You’. The fact that all of the above was delivered through by a hoarse voiced singer, fatigued from a busy weekend of gigging only adds to the magic of it all.
Unfortunately none of the above plaudits can be transferred to Bastile’s Main Stage performance. There as a crowd drawing, ticked selling device rather than musical talent it was quite painful to witness the Londoners headline set. But judging from the crowds, I fear I may be alone in my estimations. Swords offered much needed relief over in the Bier Hall. Their blend of infectious electro-pop was the perfect antidote. It is unfortunate that the numbers present were as low as they were. But this did not discourage the band who made every effort to encourage the small pocket of resistance who defied Bastille.
Once again the festival was a resounding success. With the expansion of the arena and ever-growing popularity it seems that the future of Indiependence is safe and secure for years to come.