Asia’s music and arts festival, Skechers Sundown Festival, opened to the public yesterday (19 April 2019). Organized by Red Spade Entertainment and presented by Skechers, the NC-16 festival presents an exhilarating lineup of music, food, art, and culture.
Even though the doors were supposed to open at 3pm, festival-goers were only allowed entry slightly after 5pm as the festival grounds were not ready yet. As a result, festival-goers could not indulge in the festival’s happy hour, which was supposed to be from 3 to 5pm daily. The organizers did not extend the happy hour either, which was quite disappointing as they could have extended the hours to make up for the late opening.
Artistes could be seen doing soundchecks across all three stages. This was great news to fans who had a chance to catch their favourite artistes off-stage, in between sound checks.
The artistes for Day 1 were generally spread across the three stages according to their respective genres: Utopia primarily consisted of DJs and EDM artistes, Nirvana saw rock acts bringing the roof down, and Eden showcased local and Asian indie artistes.
Here were some of the acts that took to the stage on Day 1 of Skechers Sundown Festival:
Shiena Nishizawa (Japan)
Back for the fourth time in Singapore, Shiena Nishizawa opened the Nirvana Stage at the festival. The Japanese pop-rock singer and guitarist performed to a crowd that grew steadily as her set went on, with some fans even moshing aggressively to her music.
Since Shiena was playing on the Nirvana Stage, she aptly performed a cover of Nirvana’s ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’, which got people near the stage drawn to her powerful vocals.
Big Ass (Thailand)
One of the headliners at the Nirvana Stage, Thai post-rock band Big Ass got fans grooving and headbanging to their set.
The crowd is a testament to their popularity, which is also why they have returned to Sundown Festival after their previous gig at Sundown Festival 2014.
Fans got their fair share of fanservice as vocalist Daycha Konarlo went up to the barricade to high-five the audience. Perhaps what draws people to them is their humbleness despite their heavy songs, which can be seen in the way they thank their fans and during the talking segments.
The Nirvana Stage certainly saved the best for last. Many fans arrived hours before to secure a good spot for the highlight of the night.
Comprised of Kenta Koie on vocals, guitarist Kazuki Takemura, bassist Hiroki Ikegawa, programmer and keyboardist Terufumi Tamano, and Tatsuya Amano on drums, the Japanese metalcore band put up an energetic set that left fans wanting more!
Crossfaith treated the crowd with both new and old favourites, including Catastrophe, Freedom, Omen, before ending their set with Monolith.
As one would expect of a metal band performance, the mosh was aggressive and intense, occurring at almost every song. This time, keyboardist Terufumi Tamano jumped into the crowd and took charge of the circle moshpit during ‘The Perfect Nightmare’.
Sky Rocket (Japan)
Opening the Eden Stage at the festival was Sky Rocket, a quirky indie duo from Tokyo, Japan. They were one of the winning acts in a competition led by ‘17’, a live video streaming mobile app. The competition required participants to live stream their performance on the app, and the five winning acts will be given a chance to debut in Singapore at the Eden Stage.
Sky Rocket consists of vocalist Yoshiki and electronic drummer Suzuki. The duo has had one-man shows in Japan, but the Skechers Sundown Festival marks their first-ever performance overseas. “The audience here is really different than in Japan,” said Yoshiki. “I had a fun time. Everyone was hyped, and they grooved to our music even though most of them do not know us at all! That felt great!”
They do hope to perform at the Sundown Festival again, but hopefully at the bigger stages – Nirvana and Utopia. “We believe that our music can bring something new and different from the rest,” Suzuki said. “We want to break out from the norm and perform music in a way that people have never experienced before – we want to show fans the new world we can create. So, please look forward to more of us!”
Responses from Sky Rocket were translated by the writer.
Photos by Goh Jing Wen of the DANAMIC team