After a long hot summer, the south coast’s highly anticipated Victorious Festival made its annual August bank holiday weekend appearance. Revelling onto Southsea common, (in the unsurprisingly heavy rain) came thousands of punters looking forward to the eclectic lineup of: Kaiser Chiefs, The Libertines, the ‘mod-father’ Paul Weller, and last but not least The Prodigy. Boasting three main stages, the now three-day event has been a hit for the better side of six years now – and 2018 did not disappoint.
After arriving on site the rain partially cleared, and we set up camp to watch our first Friday act of the day, Kaiser Chiefs. Formed in 2000, the indie rock band made sure to make a lasting impression for everyone at the main stage, perfectly warming up for Pete Doherty and co too. A huge achievement for the team of Victorious was bagging headliners The Libertines. Their quirky art tailored with their old school music was a delightful treat for the Pompey crowd.
Not only did Victorious manage to grab some huge headliners, but there was also a huge focus on local talent. Local ska band Ska Dogs started the Saturday off right not only adjacent to the beach, but they also drew a massive crowd whilst still offering a wholesome vibe. It is always a positive factor of a festival being able to discover a new diversified music scene and that is exactly what Portsmouth had to offer. Another local band, Slick Minded Individuals, took us into the evening with their funk influenced hip-hop. An overall fantastic performance from everyone involved. One true strength of this festival is definitely the sheer range of both activities and food; variating stages ran the full length of the site offering anything from the notorious vegetarian option of falafel to the not-so beef burger van.
Following that came Paloma Faith, with her usual eccentric performance accompanied with her untimely quirky wardrobe. I think the weather helped massively, and by the time it was Paul Weller’s turn, he had the sun and the crowd on his side. Including tracks from his last album ‘A Kind Revolution’ and a multitude of stuff from the early days of The Jam, Weller ended the set with the famous ‘A Town Called Malice’ leaving the crowd astounded by his vigour and contagious energy.
Unfortunately the weather change for the final day with Sunday’s lineup including Years and Years, Friendly Fires and Revered and the Makers. All this though was enough to make up for the worsening weather. Whilst running back and forth along the muddy common, there was a real buzz approaching the final performance of the day. Alongside a spectacular light show, The Prodigy rewarded the crowd for their perseverance by playing all their classic ‘90s hits. Among them were ‘Fire-starter’, ‘Smack My Bitch Up’ and ‘Breathe’. An astounding way to end an astounding weekend.
It is safe to say that Victorious Festival has earned it stripes regardless of the weather hardships in 2018. A great value-for-money event with offerings of great music, great food and an all round great environment. Kudos to the Victorious Festival team, and lets hope that the weather is slightly better next year.
GUEST WRITTEN BY MOLLIE GRIFFITHS & JOE HARVEY.