Tipping into the Sydney College of the Arts in Rozelle for the annual St Jerome’s Laneway Festival is always a manic mixture of excitement and anticipation. The buzz and energy from the crowd lining up at the gates is a mark of something truly stellar.
This event isn’t quite like any other on the circuit in terms of the breadth and variety of talent it showcases, which is what makes this festival such a standout. The lineup delivers time and time again and punters can expect to catch the best live acts running around, up-and-coming and seasoned alike.
Even if you walk into Laneway Festival not knowing some of the acts on the bill, you’ll be sure to leave with a few new favourites.
Despite the furor outside, this year felt marginally more zen by comparison (looking at you Tame Impala); all the better to kick back and enjoy, of course. Arriving at the tail end of a sweet set from Ruby Fields, G-Flip warmed the adjoining stage with some effortless steeze.
Then, after copping an earful from Baker Boy and co, Smino took out the Dr. Martens stage while Middle Kids and Methyl Ethel played tight back-to-back sets over on main, drawing a massive albeit slowly melting crowd under the relentless mid-afternoon sun. Rex Orange County was a clear festival favourite before everyone moved across campus for The Smith Street Band.
New York punks Parquet Courts had a tough spot competing with Courtney Barnett, but won over a stoked and loyal crowd over at the Future Classic stage. What So Not hit the Garden Stage shortly after, complete with blow up pool toys and an appearance from the man himself, Daniel Johns.
Gang of Youths appeased the masses in their rowdy roundabout way, frontman Le’aupepe at the helm. Of course, we couldn’t pass up a spot of Crooked Colours who were playing across the way before rounding it all out with a whole lotta ambience courtesy of Jon Hopkins.