As a twenty one year old music lover, I had a dirty little secret; I had never been to a festival. This had to change and cometh the 14th of August this did; I arrived at Hevy Fest (And yes, there were monkeys!).
With alcohol, and a way to keep my phone charged being soured before even considering a sleeping bag, my list of priorities were pretty strong. Once the tents were up, it was time to go listen to some metal!
The first act I went to see was Hactivist, with their mix of heavy riffs and fast paced vocals they managed to draw a substantial crowd for 4:30pm on a Friday afternoon! Getting everyone up and moving proved to be easy for them as they took control of the stage and crowd.
After a quick break it was off to see Landscapes who put on a solid performance despite having drawn only a small crowd; this didn’t seem to phase them as they attempted to get the few who did turn up involved – a strong performance but unfortunately they did not have much to work with.
For The Dillinger Escape Plan it was a very different story compared to Landscapes. The masses ascended upon the main arena and they certainly knew how to get the crowd going – mosh pits were the order of their set and that is exactly what they got, with sweaty bodies flying into each other, pushing for some space, it was not a disappointment.
Fightstar was a nice surprise to the line-up, although I only managed to catch the last part of their set due to the times clashing with The Dillinger Escape Plan. What I did see impressed me, having slowly made my way to the front through a packed out tent, the atmosphere was electric!
The sun had risen, the campsite was coming alive, it was day two of the music. This meant two things, coffee was well and truly needed & it was time to go on safari, of course!
Having thankfully avoided the long wait at the campsite for some caffeine by finding what I can only describe as the holy grail of Costa Coffee machines at the Zoos reception, the trip was joyous but short lived as after getting halfway around, the need for more music was strong.
Once back at the festival, it was time for Arcane Roots who, for me, were the biggest surprise. With beautiful guitar riffs and plenty of screams, they undoubtedly had a large following at Hevy. Although not the strongest stage presence of the festival, they kept the crowd jumping around and even when the microphones cut out, they kept their cool with the crowd chanting for a drum solo while everything got fixed.
Shortly after, Monuments took to the third stage; they are known for their performances and it is clear to see why. The third stage tent was packed, a circle pit formed and even in the limited space, additional security had to be called in due to crowd surfing. From the very start of their set, they knew exactly what they wanted and how to get it.
Announcing that after their current tour they will be heading back into the studio to start writing the next album, I can not wait to see what Monuments get up to next.
Overall I would say Hevy Fest lived up to its name. For a first time festival goer, it was one hell of a weekend and with tickets for 2016 already going on sale, the atmosphere, the people and the access to the zoo are worth it alone – before the music even starts! I look forward to seeing your faces next year!
For tickets to Hevy Fest 2016 click here.