Daydream Festival was the perfect indie rock day out

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Daydream Festival was the perfect indie rock day out

Daydream Festival played host to indie rock royalty on a perfect April afternoon at Sidney Myer Music Bowl and the result was resplendent.

Majak Door kicked things off with their dreamy surf pop rock. As you can tell from the name, the six-piece are Melbourne all-over and have been building a strong reputation over the previous few years, garnering breakthrough success with their lo-fi cover of Stardust’s Music Sounds Better With You during the pandemic.

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The band’s original output is no less impressive, with fellow hits Will She Leave You and Everybody Wants You perfectly suited to the sunshine Bowl atmosphere, as the second-last performance of the Live at the Bowl lineup delivered the dreamy, slightly nostalgic atmosphere it deserved.

If anyone was concerned about a festival with such an overt indie slant becoming repetitive, Cloud Nothings alayed those thoughts immediately. Their riffs hit hard over their recorded catalogue, there’s a bite and urgency to their music that instantly sets them apart. In person though, they’re a much harder beast.

By far the hardest act of the day, Dylan Baldi has no hesitation waking up the crowd with full-throttle screams as they pounded through their hits – kicking things into gear with perhaps their best-known track, I’m Not Part Of Me, Cloud Nothings quickly proved why they’ve had such a consistent level of acclaim across their career so far. Simply put, they rock, and were our surprise favourites of the day.

Beach Fossils, the massive success that they are with hundreds of millions of streams and a devoted fanbase worldwide, drew a lofty cheer when they followed and were clearly more than happy to kick things down a gear and bring us all back to that flow state ambience. It’s easy to see why Beach Fossils are so successful, their music is perfectly suited to the endless cavalcade of indie playlists on Spotify that have helped introduce them to the world.

Tropical Fuck Storm were always going to stand out on this lineup – or any lineup, for that matter – and the fact Modest Mouse praised them as one of their “top three bands” says it all, really.

Those shredding guitars and Gareth Liddiard’s truly unique refrains deserve the spectacular lighting and awe-inspiring visuals of the Bowl and TFS delivered in spades, with covers of The Stooges (Ann) and Lose The Baby (Lost Animal) thrown in for good measure.

Then came Modest Mouse, who played an elongated set due to Slowdive’s unfortunate cancellation, less than 24-hours before the festival was due to kick off. It was only then that the audience really filled and the hill got moving, people rushing towards the barrier as The World at Large rung around the amphitheatre.

They ended up playing a very lengthy set indeed with a three-track punch of Dashboard, Lace Your Shoes and Float On before a whopping four-track encore.

While many in attendance doubtless rued Slowdive’s absence – and it goes without saying the shoegaze pioneers would have added a totally new element to the proceedings – Daydream still lived up to its title, exactly the kind of event that the Sidney Myer Music Bowl was built for.

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