06 April 2013

Easterfest 2013: Day 4

Sunday 31 March

Our Sunday started with another of the panel sessions in the Forum, this time hosted by SPARC. The topic was "Breaking the Barriers: Do we need more Christian artists in the mainstream of culture?", and guests included Evermore, Rowan Brand, Tigertown and Bec Laughton.

When this finished, the interview with Lecrae in the Arena was already underway, so I headed over there. Kara stayed to watch the sound and light show in the Entrance Tent. The music from that was loud enough to almost drown out all sound in the Arena venue. It was really hard to hear the questions or answers in the interview, until the light show stopped. When question time was over, Lecrae left the stage, and United Pursuit Band came straight on for their interview, as they had a Mainstage sound check to get to afterward.

At 2 pm we went back to the Forum for the Q&A session with Lecrae hosted by Parachute's Noise folk. That was one full room.

The attentive audience. Lecrae is seated, in a red shirt, to the right of the interviewer (standing, black and white T-shirt).
Towards the end of the Q&A time, the rain got heavier. It had been sprinkling lightly, off and on, most of the morning. Now it got a bit heavier.

People coming in out of the rain.
Kara stayed in the Forum, to catch the next Noise session, "Taking Your Band to the Next Level". It ended up being cut short, as water flowed in that side of the main tent. In the meantime, I took my umbrella and made my way across the muddy walkways to the Big Top, where Evermore were about to start their one and only set at the festival.

There was a layer of water over most of the floor of the Big Top, and it was a Premium-only show, but the tent was still pretty full. I hung around the back where I could hear it all, but didn't get any great photos.

After about half the set, I left to rejoin Kara in the Entrance Tent cafe, where she was hanging out and staying dry. The Evermore show was being streamed live on Easterfest TV, and was playing on the screens in the cafe.

Then came the 5 pm light show, which was my first time actually sitting through the entire thing. It was an impressive visual and auditory display. All my pictures were taken when the lights were red, but they changed colour, and bright white spotlights between the umbrellas shone out into the crowd and up to the ceiling. To see what I mean, see here.

The view straight up at the umbrellas in the light/sound display.
Lui Amato (Bec Laughton's drummer) performs an interpretive dance to the light show.

Our traditional Sunday dinner at home is fish & chips, and being on holiday or at Easterfest is no reason to do any different. Compared to other food on offer at the festival, fish and chips wasn't much more expensive than at non-festival outlets. It was also really well cooked. (Last year's fish and chips we had on the Sunday night hadn't been great.) While we ate, we caught a bit of the Jeremy O'Connor Gospel Band from Mainstage, via the Easterfest TV broadcast.

Eating fish and chips.
After our dinner, Kara stayed in the cafe while I headed out to Mainstage, which was opening about half an hour late due to the rain and mud. It was still nowhere near as bad as the rain in 2011, and not even anywhere near as muddy as the Easterfest a few years ago where rain in the week beforehand had left the festival site a mess of mud and straw.

A slightly smaller-than-usual Mainstage crowd.
Indie alternative worship band Ascend the Hill were great. You can check out their music here and download their albums for free or by donation.

Sunday night Mainstage was headlined by Newworldson, a Canadian soul/reggae band back in Australia for another (their third, I think) Easterfest. They had some guest saxophonists, and a new guitarist and bass player since their last visit Down Under. Guitarist Leroy Emmanuel was awesome.

They put on an amazing show as always, but the surprise highlight of the night was yet to come.

The Palace venue (a large circus-style tent) had been transformed into a winter wonderland for Tigertown's Fantasy Show. The entryways into the venue had little archways with cardboard wardrobe doors, strung with white Christmas lights. Inside each doorway were several artificial Christmas trees, and there were more around the stage. It was very Narnian winter, even down to two snow machines above the stage blowing fake snow over the crowd.

Tigertown put on an absolutely fantastic show, and it rates as my second highlight of Easterfest. (The first being getting to see Demon Hunter live.) I don't have any good photos, since I was at the back of the venue, but check out one of the official ones. And more here in Easterfest's Facebook album of Sunday's events.

From there I went to the Big Top, to see the Sunday night closing headliner, rapper Lecrae. I have a few of his albums on iTunes, but don't know all that much of his stuff. Still, he was really good, and it was a good close to the festival for another year.

Lecrae reminds the audience who the festival is about.

Home sweet holiday home.

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