Florence + the Machine steals the show at last day of Flow Festival
Sunday 16 August was already the last day of Flow Festival 2015. After two great nights, Beck, Todd Terje, Tove Lo, Florence + the Machine and Alt-J had the task of bringing the festival to a spectacular end. And so they did!
American musician Beck played at main stage from 19:00 on. The multiple Grammy Award winner entertained with a mix of acoustic moving tracks and louder and rocking pieces. He switched between his older hits and the material of his latest album, called Morning Phase and the brand new single ‘Dreams’, that was composed to keep the crowd going at festivals. At the same time, Todd Terje from Norway played an eclectic mix of electro, deep house and nu disco with his band The Olsens in the Black TEnt. Of course the audience waited for the moment he started to play ‘Inspector Norse’ and all hands were in the air during the catchy tune.
Next up in the black tent was Swedish pop star Tove Lo. The singer who had a big breakthrough in 2014 with her hit single ‘Habits (Stay High)’ build up quite an audience over the past months and this showed in a packed tent on Flow Festival. She explained to the crowd that she caught a cold, so she did four shots of whiskey to warm up her voice and is a bit tipsy. Vocally, she has sounded better before, but she manages to charm the crowd with her honest songs about her life full of partying, broken hearts, sex and being wasted. Her audience sings along loudly to ‘Talking Body’ and of course ‘Habits’ and it’s safe to say the latter has become a pop classic. To put it like she would herself: she is not the best vocalist we have ever heard, but she has her moments and on good days she is ‘charming as f**k’ and writes the greatest pop melodies.
On the main stage it was time for Florence + the Machine. The British band fronted by Florence Welch just released their third album How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful and her gig at Flow Festival is her last appearance this summer to promote the record. Florence reached an iconic status over the years and the main stage is absolutely packed for her gig and not just by casual listeners, but by people who go mad for the larger than life stadium pop, Florence has to offer. Every track is written and performed with a certain intensity that is hard to describe, but definitely felt when you experience her concerts in the front rows. She breathes the tracks on stage, running and jumping around but never missing a note with that huge, belting voice.
When witnessing this show that mixes her hits from the first two albums Lungs and Ceremonials with the new ones, you actually realize how many huge songs she has already written in a relatively short period of time. She opens with the epic and rocky ‘What The Water Gave Me’, closes with the ecstatic ‘Dog Days Are Over’ and makes Helsinki jump with ‘Spectrum’ and ‘Shake It Out’. She especially impresses with the tracks of her latest record. First single ‘What Kind Of Man’ is performed with a passion and intensity that is not seen often during a pop concert and she even has a little moment with a guy in the front row while everyone tries to grab her hands, recreating the scenes of the outstanding music video for the song. The title track ‘How Big, How Blue, How Beautiful’ and ‘Queen of Peace’ sound even more gorgeous with live trumpets that fly over the audience in the open air. The powerful chorus of new single ‘Ship To Wreck’ suddenly had the greatest choir and Florence shows that she only grew with this new material. Her gig at Flow Festival was definitely something special and it showed Florence + the Machine is one of the biggest artists of this moment.
For the people who weren’t done yet after that whirlwind of a performance, they could move over to the blue tent to watch Alt-J play a calming, almost hypnotizing set of beautiful, melodic and flawlessly executed tracks. Highlights are the smooth ‘Tesselate’, the gorgeous ‘Taro’ and of course the infectious ‘Breezeblocks’ to close with. This was actually the end of Flow Festival 2015. It has been an exciting ride and let’s hope for such a thrilling line-up again next year.