2019 has well and truly begun and Field Day rang in the new year in a truly wild fashion. The festival brought their A-game this year, with headliners like RUFUS DU SOL, Flight Facilities and Cardi B (!!!) absolutely annihilating the Centre Field.
We were on the ground at The Domain in Sydney to watch all of Field Day’s craziness unfold, setting the bar insanely high for the 2019 Australian festival scene. Here are our favourite moments!
All photos by Mikki Gomez
Ninajirachi kicking off the day in style
Perched on the gigantic Centre Field stage at the 1'o'clock time slot, the early Field Day punters braved the sweltering heat to watch Ninajirachi play the pop-house DJ set of your dreams. With at least four Charli XCX tracks, Immaterial by SOPHIE, 212 by Azealia Banks as well as her bubbly collab Gardenia with Sydney producer Oh Boy, sprinkled within it, Ninajirachi heralded the beginning of Field Day with bop after bop. All hail queen Nina!
Hobo Johnson & The LoveMakers' pop covers
Performing arguably the most angsty set of the day, Hobo Johnson & The LoveMakers’ mixture of spoken-word poetry and brash percussion made for a really interesting Field Day moment. “This one’s going to be sad, sorry to ruin the mood,” Johnson pronounced before ripping into Creve Coeur 1, and despite the sombreness of the performance, the audience was hooked. The outfit rounded out the back half with searing renditions of Alicia Keys’ If I Ain’t Got You and Kelly Clarkson’s Since You Been Gone, two of the many insane covers Field Day brought about.
KYLE's insane jumping ability
Probably the most fun a crowd had all of Field Day was during KYLE’s simultaneously cute and high-energy set. KYLE orchestrated the audience to wave their hands to the sky, from side-to-side, front-to-back during hits like Playinwitme and iSPY, tracks that were almost born to be played on a festival stage. KYLE should also really try his hand in hurdles or something, because that man can jump!
all the awesome outfits
With temperatures reaching 33 degrees, the recurring wardrobe theme of the day was everyone's sweat. Accompanying the sweat, there were tonnes of vibrant hair extensions, with people flocking to emulate Cardi B’s incredible pink and purple hair moment. Audacious chokers were also in, with the word ‘VEGAN’ or ‘QUEEN’ scrawled across necks in silver plated letters. The guys mostly just wore striped shirts, again.
Bishop Briggs' INXS hat-tip
Sincere angel Bishop Briggs brought her powerhouse vocals to Sydney, playing hits like Wild Horses and River to an extremely enthusiastic crowd, sporting an uber-cool buzz cut. The coolest moment of the set however, was her gritty cover of iconic INXS hit Never Tear Us Apart; the eyes of a somewhat skeptic crowd were glued to Briggs from that point forward.
Amy Shark singalongs
After an absolutely insane 2018 for Amy Shark, starting 2019 at Field Day must’ve felt pretty damn good. With a now expansive catalogue of hits under her belt like All Loved Up, Mess Her Up and Psycho, the crowd sung along more so than any other Amy Shark gig we’ve attended. Aside from a few cheesy ad-libs (before playing her main 2018 single, Amy asked the crowd, “If you see anyone today who isn’t an Amy Shark fan, tell them all I Said Hi), Shark proved that she's mastered her live show, something that’s been years in the making.
Mallrat's rendition of Untouched with The Veronicas
“I love this part of the set because it’s when I can start bringing my friends out.” Mallrat, acting coy, announced to the crowd midway through her sunny and sparkly Field Day set. After performing an acoustic cover of Outkast’s Hey Ya with Tyne James Organ, Mallrat was lost for words. “I don't even know how to introduce these guys, please welcome to the stage The Veronicas!” The opening violin chords of Untouched then blared over the loudspeakers and suddenly, simultaneously, everyone in the crowd passed out. With a festival that had Cardi B on the goddamn main stage, Mallrat was still able to pull of the most iconic moments of the day. Mallrat, DJ Denim and The fuckin' Veronicas were not here to mess around.
SHECK WES's Mo Bamba
Having to fill the six shoes that Migos left behind, Sheck Wes knew he had to give the crowd what they wanted, Mo Bamba. And he teased the intro from the get-go, before going into another track entirely. The anticipation for Mo Bamba kept the crowd on their toes during the entire set, with joints like Live Sheck Wes Die Sheck Wes and Gmail (SHECK JESUS SHECK SHECK JESUS) proving that Sheck’s other tracks are way more than just fillers. Yet, once Mo Bamba finally played in its entirety mid-set, the crowd had lost all inhibitions completely. Migos who?
Cardi B's amazing stage production
Aside from having to go backstage to pull out a wedgie mid-set, Cardi B’s Sydney debut was non-stop. Cardi brought a level of production and showmanship that Field Day hadn’t seen before, with the stage featuring a gold-glittered staircase and backup dancers twerking from tracks like Bickenhead to her newest single Money. Hearing hit after hit (I Like It was the biggest dance-number of the day), it was wild to think how quickly Cardi B has rose to notoriety, and how many singalongs she was able to pull off. The '90s R&B inspired intro to Be Careful had the crowd swaying, before screaming one of Cardi’s greatest lyrics, ‘I wanna get married! Like the Currys, Steph and Ayesha shit'! The gigantic set closed with Bodak Yellow and by the end of it all, she had successfully indoctrinated Sydney into the Church of Cardi.
RUFUS DU SOL's innovative live show
Closing out the Centre Field Stage, RUFUS DU SOL’s first homecoming show since SOLACE’s release was nothing short of brilliant. With the most ambitious sound and lighting production of the day, the boys played their catalogue of festival hits with a passion and integrity not usually found in such large-scale electronic acts. The outro to SOLACE’s title track took on another form in its live setting, with a stunning distortion of sounds and lights filling the field beautifully. You Were Right from their previous record Bloom still held up as one of the greatest Australian festival tracks of all time. Acts like Flight Facilities and RUFUS DU SOL really do highlight the potential for smart, innovative electronic Australian performances, and Field Day is THE festival for them to shine.