Although it’s bound to be difficult to top past Visions Festival highlights of 2015’s hug from Shamir, or last year’s discovery of my love of Bleached, this year’s line up is looking pretty sweet…
Kicking off the typically sunny day’s live music is North London duo Ider. Megan Markwick and Lily Somerville get things off to a perfectly shimmering start with their dreamy harmonies and throbbing beats, oozing mesmerising, whirring loops alongside their smooth, luscious vocals. Casting their spell over the crowd with the sugary sweet folktronica of tracks such as ‘Sorry’, the duo provide the perfect soundtrack to the sun-soaked, chilled-out vibes filling East London’s Oval Space.
Sticking around in the Oval Space, I’ve been looking forward to seeing the next artist ever since I first heard the resounding power of her single ‘Dance While You Shoot’. And Noga Erez certainly doesn’t disappoint. Making a majestic, smoke-filled entrance to the stage, the Tel Aviv artist treats us to an array of magnificent soundscapes.
Delivering an utterly compelling performance, she glides across the stage with a hypnotic elegance as each sweeping cacophony soars alongside her powerful eerie vocals and pulsating beats. As the glitchy, dynamic energy of tracks such as ‘Toy’ and ‘Off The Radar’ leave the crowd completely entranced by Erez’s magnetising grace, she ends the set with the fiery, frenzied power of the incredible ‘Dance While You Shoot’, cementing herself firmly as one of the most exciting artists around, and a simply stunning performer.
A short walk away sees us arrive at NT’s bar just in time to catch Nashville’s Soccer Mommy. A change in tone from my electro-pop-filled afternoon so far, Sophie Allison charms the crowd with her gentle, emotion-strewn explorations of adulthood and relationships. As her lilting, impassioned vocals ooze tender lyrics of love and loss alongside hazy strummed melodies, the delicate beauty of each indie-folk offering is a real treat for the ears.
After a little break from the music for some soaking up of rays and eating of chips on the very pleasant roof terrace, we retreat back inside for all the jangly joy of Scottish Album of the Year award winners Sacred Paws. Fronted by the sunny charm of Rachel Aggs, they treat us to one delectable, danceable delight after another.
Expressing gratitude for playing in one of the few venues with natural light, Aggs bounces across the stage with a whirring energy as vibrant melodies flow seamlessly alongside lush harmonies and thrilling, racing beats. As the whole venue fills with smiling faces and buoyant bodies, it’s impossible not be left grinning from cheek to cheek as the utterly uplifting and impossibly infectious charisma of this front woman oozes throughout the sun-filled room as she joins the crowd for one last dance.
So, once again, Visions Festival has delivered. Another gloriously sunny day with some of the most glorious new music the world has to offer right now.