Adelaide’s start to spring wasn’t exactly the greatest, rain, wind, cold (a LOT of cold). In a bid to escape the cold, the best option was to head north, but not just any north. We went Maroochydore north, and what’d we find? Sun, warmth, and a banging festival to help us forget the troubles of Adelaide. Welcome to Maroochydore Music and Visual Arts Festival.
Held in the Old Horton Park Golf Course, MMVAF for anyone who is unfamiliar with the festival, is - imagine if Parklife (reminisce those days), Groovin The Moo and an art showing had a three-way and then the baby was spliced between those 3... this is the outcome. The visual aspect of the festival is what makes it truly special. As you walk onto the grounds, 5 giant light up humanoids by Amanda Parer tower above the festival, amongst all the other lighting and effects, these guys added an almost scary yet wondrous effect to the acts. Think Matt Corby serenading a crowd of thousands, whilst two giants appear to be climbing down onto stage to join him. Just nearby, several painters spent the day transforming a blank wall into an incredible mural, before another area of the wall was turned into a light show by night.
As if this wasn’t already enough, Mic Black had created the Wonder Games, an area where retro arcade games had been brought to life in large scale and Wintercroft had been hard at work creating intricate masks for festival goers.
Of course with any music festival, the main reason many of us head along is to watch our favourite artists do their thing live, and with any luck, let them blow our minds with their talent. The 2016 MMVAF line up was full of acts with the potential to blow our minds and that’s exactly what they did.
To spend time writing about each and every artist watched would be to write you a novel, but a few highlights were had for sure. One of those had to be Adelaide band Bad//Dreems. Is there a little bias? Maybe. But damn if these boys didn’t’ take stage early in the day and get everyone pumped, impressing you? It ain’t easy. Following this little reminder of home, Allday took over the stage and was as energetic an entertaining as always. From this point forward the crowd at The Ampi (mainstage) only got bigger and bigger, even with the imminent threat of tropical rain.
The good vibes hung around all night, thanks to City Calm Down and George Maple, who both delivered with spectacular performances, but it was the music man himself Matt Corby who delivered that big hit of mind blowing music. Perhaps it was the time slot, or maybe it was the atmosphere, but in the moments before it started to rain, this was truly unforgettable. Matt's performance seemed like it would definitely go unmatched, but Peking Duk were yet to do their thing. Suddenly an all too familiar voice sounded, think washed up, think Bay Watch, Peking Duk had a stage intro recorded by David Hasselhoff, it was the most perfect Peking Duk moment possible. They then proceeded to drop banger after banger, including a new song and had George Maple join them onstage, it really was good times all around.
To cap the festival off, Alex Lahey and Client Liason deserve an honourable mention for not only killing their sets but also playing right through a down pour of rain that continued for several hours. Damaged gear? Very likely. Festival goer’s finding festival perfection? You goddamn bet we did.
All photos taken by Harrison Schultz