Culture, Events, Live Reviews — January 28, 2013 at 5:59 pm

Laneway Festival 2013: Impressions

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Still recovering from Laneway Festival 2013, we piece together memories and snapshots to bring you further impressions of the line-up. Aching limbs, burnt skin and lost voices – all worth it!

Kings of Convenience

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The strikingly tall figures of Erlend and Eirik onstage marked the beginning of the long-awaited day at Laneway Festival and those who came extra early to beat the snaking queues were rewarded with the duo’s trademark acoustic meanderings and buttery-smooth vocal tones. Clearly at ease in front of the Singapore audience, which is no surprise considering their multiple visits to the island, Kings of Convenience played a host of favourites such as ‘Cayman Islands’, ‘Boat Behind’ and automatic crowd-pleaser ‘I’d Rather Dance With You’, accompanied with Erlend’s quirky, awkwardly adorable dance moves. We also spotted him prancing around to Alt-J and Tame Impala amongst the crowd later in the night – did you? 

Nicolas Jaar

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Nosebleed-inducing, fever-raising, dashing good looks aside, Nicolas Jaar lived up to the hype that had surrounded him over the past two years with a set that proved to be a refreshing change from the rest of the band-centric Laneway Singapore line-up. Supported by guitarist Dave Harrington and sax player Will Epstein (who could very well be Koreless and Shlohmo in disguise respectively) Jaar expertly crafted a trilogy of grooves that managed to move the crowd despite the sultry heat of the day. While the set fell short of ascending to a distinct climax, the trio’s musical ingenuity and vision drove electronic music lovers in attendance to beatific bliss.

Kimbra

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What can we say? The girl’s a firecracker. Looking like a purple pinata at a 7-year-old’s birthday party, in a dress that seemed to have been assembled out of confetti with bright turquoise wigs as sleeves, Kimbra had the crowd eating out of her hands throughout her entire set. With a brilliant backing band and those glorious pipes, she danced her way through a vibrant, high-energy set that left us reeling. Special mention goes out to her live version of ‘Settle Down’, which was given a trap-style treatment that undoubtedly made several audience members bust out a gangsta handsign or two. 

Real Estate

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Oh how we wished Real Estate had played a much earlier set, when the sunshine would have perfectly complemented their jangly surf guitar daydreams and they wouldn’t have suffered from the jarring drop of energy after Kimbra’s wild, uptempo performance. Still, their renditions of songs from sophomore album ‘Days’ were well-received by fans, who were also treated to the surprise premiere of several new songs from their upcoming record. Despite sound hiccups that prevented them from truly shining, the progressive slow-down of ‘All The Same’ at the closure of their set proved that Real Estate were indeed the real deal. 

Bat for Lashes

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An ethereal vision in white, Bat for Lashes descended upon the stage and delivered one of the most breathtaking performances of the night. Her stunning voice, which was much more arresting live than on record, told poetic tales of magical horses, enchanted crowns and celestial objects that kept the entire audience riveted. There was no option but to believe in every single word of ‘What’s A Girl To Do?’ as Natasha Khan wove her hands above our heads, casting a musical spell that has yet to be lifted.

Tame Impala

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Despite their name, psychedelic five-piece Tame Impala was a savage beast onstage last Saturday, hurtling through their setlist with blistering ferocity. Frontman and main songwriting wizard Kevin Parker looked visibly pleased to be playing in Singapore for the first time as he led the rest of the band on a romp through songs such as ‘Elephant’ and ‘Half-Full Glass Of Wine’, strung together by off-kilter jam interludes that transported their live set to a higher plane. With every single member of the band playing extra roles in an endless list of other musical projects (Pond, Gum, Allbrook/Avery, Tahiti 80, Melody’s Echo Chamber and so on), it was no wonder that their performance was a showcase of straight-up, stellar musicianship. If only we could only go backwards and relive the night.

Check out Marie‘s and Dawn‘s impressions of Laneway Festival 2013 and our photo album!