Maggie Rogers rode her way to fame on the backbone of a viral facebook video which consisted of popular musical Pharrell Williams crying after hearing her debut track Alaska. That track now features on her debut EP Now That the Light is Fading. And if Williams cried to her first song, it is almost certain he would’ve cried throughout her Splendour set. Each of the songs in her set was comprised of funky beats and folk like melodies, yet the real star of every track she played is Rogers’ voice. She opened her set with ‘Colour Song’ and mutlitracked her vocals, making it sound like she is singing into a huge well, the echo’s reverberating creating a chorus of only her. The song has a haunting hymn like feel and she often lingers on evocative lyrics letting her voice and the meaning of the words sit with the listener for a few seconds longer. In her song “On & Off” she picked up the pace and matches the choppy beat to her eerie vocals at times allowing her voice to completely overpower and swallow her bands backup. She slides easily between her ranges, which were incredible in “Dog Days” a song about true heartbreak. Her voice is longing, distant and shows so much soul it’s as if she is baring all of it. Rogers’ EP may talk of lights that are fading but as a singer, a lyricist and a performer her light is certainly one that is not.
Vera Blue was 100% my favourite outfit of the festival. The 23 year old Australian artist looked like Game of Thrones Sansa Stark had put on a seaweed costume but in the very best way possible. Her high cut turquoise jumpsuit contrasted her vibrant red hair and stood out with its endless ruffles and flowing fabric. The wearable piece of art was created by Australian fashion designer EWOL designs from their Cellularity collection.
I’ll admit, the happy Kanye was cool and the Tepee forest is always setup well. But when the night blanketed the sky the real stars were the cloakroom, fires and the heaters. I checked in my big turquoise fur coat at the beginning of the days and as soon as it hit 5:00 I checked it straight back out and made sure it didn’t leave my body for the rest of the night. In addition to that the fire pits and heaters at some tents were a nice touch. I don’t think anyone was prepared for the significant temperature drop from last year but clearly the Splendour officials had asked Siri what the temperature was a few months in advance. Huddled around the fire pits and the heaters I think the universal feeling was at least you hadn’t opted for a chain bra and fishnets.
Photo 1: @rodgerbrian
Photo 2: @nmemagazine
Photo 3: @jessicastaats