Love Saves The Day 2016

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The 9-5 grind has made the recent Bank Holiday a near distant memory. However, whilst in it’s prime, we headed to Eastville Park for Bristol’s very own inner-city festival: Love Saves The Day. This year, the sold out two day festival offered up a broad selection of artists and performers; combining big names, world class DJ’s and producers and boasted  performances from the likes of Dizzee Rascal, Stormzy, Just Blaze, Chase & Status, Giggs, Section Boyz, Just Blaze, Casisdead, Goldie, Hot Chip, Congo Natty, Loyle Carner…the list goes on!

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The event has grown hugely since it’s Castle Park days and now feels like a full on festival; complete with inflatable church, roller disco and an array of wildly decorated unique stages, stalls and tents.  We arrived on the Saturday to blazing warm sunshine and swarms of festival goers flocking towards the festival site.  Saturday was a day to explore and dip in and out of different sets and performances; a hazy whirl of glittery stages and electronic music throughout. Mura Masa gave an impressive performance on the main stage, with the multi-instrumentalist’s melodic tones set the mood for the oncoming day. Musical highlights on the Saturday were Bugzy Malone who performed on the Dance Off stage which was completely rammed the entire time and later on in the day Hot Chip who closed on the main stage.

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Sunday took over where Saturday left off; blessing us with yet another day of epic weather to compliment the festivities that lay ahead. With the afternoon underway, Kiko Bun’s laid back, reggae-infused vibes echoed the near Caribbean climate of BS5 before we crossed the park to catch the Sprung Boys, who had set up the perfect soundtrack to celebrate the start of the Sabbath. And so began the day of stage-hopping; moving from zone to zone in order to make sure we sampled as much of the wide soundscape that was on offer. One minute we’re screwing our faces up to the likes of Giggs and Casisdead, the next we’re led out on the grass and unwinding to the excellent Hot 8 Brass Band and Laid Blak. You’re getting cheap laughs at the Jump Off battles, then you’re in the mix of those bouncing around underneath Bristol natives My Nu Leng.

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As the afternoon met evening, we took in one of the best sets of the day.  Following a typically rowdy Section Boyz set, Loyle Carner then took to the Paradiso tent and gave a masterclass in live performance. Those that are familiar will know that he’s made a name for himself with is smooth, mellow tones but when he transfers it to a live show; the music elevates and resonates. Accompanied by his producer/DJ Rebel Kleff, the duo worked the crowd to perfection and delivered one of the best intimate sets we’ve seen in quite a while.

With the darkness creeping in, the big names earned their crust. Stormzy whipped the masses at the main stage into a frenzy before passing the torch on to Dizzee Rascal, who’s headline slot epitomised his showmanship. Parallel to this, Chase & Status offered the alternative; taking advantage of Arcadia’s flaming Afterburner rig, illuminating the night sky and squeezing every last drop of energy from the baying crowd at the foot of their stage.

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Then just like that, 11pm hit and the music locked off.  The thousands in attendance slowly dispersed; taking away with them a weekend of incredible weather, questionable tanlines, a whole heap of brilliant live music and with a Bank Holiday to wake up to; pure, undiluted summer vibes.  Without sounding naff, the whole weekend had a feel-good atmosphere and was seemingly drama free. LSTD has grown dramatically over the past few years and if this time around is anything to go by, we’re already looking at heading back to Bris’ for 2017.

W: Katie Pill, Mike Pattemore

P: Anis Ali