Big Day Out Festival 2013

Big Day Out, Adelaide, January 25th 2013

By Rowena Edwards

                Big Day Out is arguably Australia’s biggest music festival and travels to the Gold Coast, Sydney, Adelaide, Melbourne and Perth with a collection of contemporary artists from both Australia and abroad. This year the Adelaide, January 25, 2013 line-up included the Red Hot Chili Peppers; The Killers; Vampire Weekend; The Yeah Yeah Yeahs; Childish Gambino; B.o.B; Band of Horses; Every Time I Die; Foals; Avalanche City; House Vs Hurricane; Grinspoon; Full Tote Odds; Pretty Lights; The Beards, The Medics and more!

Festival-goers started streaming through the Wayville Showground gates at 10am on a surprisingly pleasant day, compared to the 46-degree heatwave that assaulted the Sydney Big Day Out. One of the first acts to grace the Orange Stage- one of two main stages set up on the oval, was House Vs Hurricane, whose sense of fun and excitement permeated through the crowd and set off several circle pits.

House Vs. Hurricane 

See our House Vs. Hurricane interview here:

As well as these two main stages, the Green Stage, Vans Essential Stage, Boiler Room, Red Stage, No Noise Nightclub and The Lilypad also provided non-stop, high energy entertainment. On the Green Stage, Avalanche City, the brainchild of Dave Baxter, played a set consisting of almost every song from the debut album Our New Life Above The Ground as well as new single Sunset, to a besotted, mostly female audience who sang every word back at the stage.

Avalanche City

See our Avalanche City interview here:

On the Vans Essential Stage, The Medics blasted a wall of chaotic punk rock, their abundant curly hair being flung in every direction along with their limbs. Crowd-surfing was probably their personal highlight of the set and got the audience into quite a frenzy. Later on B.o.B and Childish Gambino took their turns on this stage, with screaming fans packing the building for their high-energy performances, both of which saw the rappers surf the star-struck crowd.

The Medics 


Childish Gambino

On the Orange Stage, Grinspoon drew from many of their albums and the beer-drinking Australian crowd roared nostalgically at the plethora of 90s rock hits before racing to the neighbouring Blue Stage for Band of Horses. Introducing themselves with a Southern twang, they launched into a set that flowed in and out of many paces and moods, unfailingly keeping the crowd’s collective interest as their awesomeness was absorbed en-masse.


Band of Horses

For those who were overwhelmed by this, Full Tote Odds could be found in matching red Adidas suits on the Red Stage, bouncing around like puppies, weaving their voices around one another’s to create multilayered hip-hop. After this brief respite, the majority of festival-goers made their way back to the Orange Stage for Vampire Weekend. Practically leaping onstage, they launched straight into Cousins and the crowd swooned at vocalist and guitarist Ezra Koenig’s illegal levels of charm and self-assured, flirtatious cockiness. The band’s playfulness created a joyous, happy fog in the mosh.

Full Tote Odds

Vampire Weekend

There was no end in sight as the Yeah Yeah Yeahs took to the Blue Stage, their outgoing, crazy vocalist Karen O sporting a banana-yellow, bedazzled coat and shorts accentuated by fluorescent gloves, shoes and microphone. More rock than pop, their set allowed Karen and the crowd to go as mad as they pleased – which for Karen O was excessively so!

The Yeah Yeah Yeahs 

Then the anticipation began. The Killers were up next on the Orange Stage and a buzz filled the air as die-hard fans clamoured for a place at the front. They began with their classic hit, Mr Brightside and the set continued in much this way, with a heavy emphasis on crowd favourites from their previous albums and only two songs from Battle Born. No one complained, though, especially when they launched into a cover of Crowded House’s Don’t Dream It’s Over. Ending with When You Were Young, The Killers were farewelled with deafening cheers before the audience turned to the serious business of getting to the front of the Blue Stage for the climax of the night, the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

The Killers 

Anticipation and adrenaline buzzed electrically through the atmosphere. Just as it reached breaking point, and after several chants of “CHILLY WILLIES”, Flea, Chad and Josh bounded up to their instruments, met by a roar too deafening to be measured in decibels. A jam began to which all ears craned, wondering which song it would morph into, and Anthony appeared just as it became discernible as Monarchy of Roses, striding up to his microphone in perfect time as his part began. The rocking, all-encompassing energy sucked everyone in like a black hole of bliss, that unique brand of Chili Pepper magic. Playing both classics like Scar Tissue and Snow as well as songs from I’m With You including The Adventures of Raindance Maggie and Factory of Faith, it was clear that on-stage, the dudes were having a fantastic time as they jammed out and improvised their way through an incredible performance, returning for an encore featuring Soul to Squeeze and, last but not least, Give it Away. Then, in that haze of blissful wonder experienced at the end of all good concerts, the crowd passed through the gates once more and farewelled Big Day Out. Until next year, and THANK YOU!

Red Hot Chili Peppers


Other bands from the festival included:

Everytime I Die 


Pretty Lights

The Beards