Coverage by Trent Lira and Tiffany Valdez
The heat of the day didn’t keep anyone away when Tove Lo hit the Mars Stage. The crowd came out in FULL force to check out this Swedish pop sensation.
Although it was already hot, she didn’t shy away from turning up the heat with her sensual onstage movement and sexually charged synth-pop sound and lyrics. She churned out cuts from her album Queen of the Clouds like “Got Love” and “Not on Drugs” before transitioning into “Talking Body.” She had great energy and the crowd grooved with every song especially when she finished out the set with her hit “Habits (Stay High).”
Remix extraordinaires GTA hit the Mercury Stage with a bustling crowd anxiously awaiting their arrival after being serenaded by the anthemic DJ set by TYCHO beforehand. So when they hit the stage, the crowd was fully energized and ready to move. They played some cuts from their various E.P.s and “internet famous” remixes that they had done, but the crowd was the real star of this performance. Although the Mercury Stage was one of the smaller venues, the turnout was huge and the crowd ate up every bass drop and tempo change making for a memorable experience.
It was literally shoulder to shoulder standing room for Flume. One of the biggest performances of the day, people were not about to miss this Australian DJ’s set for anything. He played a lot of his most popular remixes such as “Tennis Courts” by Lorde, “You and Me” by Disclosure, and “Hyperparadise” by Hermitude. His pacing was really solid as far as song selection. He changed mood and tempos nicely which made for a dynamic set that was worth being crushed by fellow festival patrons.
Being one of the headlining performers of the day, Major Lazer did not disappoint. Being immersed in a sea of people for this show was a performance all in it’s own. This DJ collective works mostly by audience command, and the audience followed EVERY command. When they said put peace signs up, guns up, drinks up, hands up, or jump, the audience did exactly what they were told. The performance had visually stunning video graphics and crazy audience visuals and they also had dancers in tow as well. In support of their album Peace is the Mission, they asked how many people had bought the album. Once that had been answered, they played plenty of songs from it including “Lean On” and “Light It Up.” Of course they still played bangers like “Bubble Butt,” “Get Free,” and remixes of songs like “Watch Me Whip” and “Heads Will Roll.” They really interacted well with the crowd and Diplo even went as far as getting into a zorb ball and crowd surfing. The Major Lazer set was definitely a Free Press highlight.
Well hidden behind his enormous DJ booth in the Mars stage, Skrillex ended the night in a wild, sweaty, psychedelic dance party. The crowd stretched to as far as the tents and not a soul stood still in the midst of his upbeat remixes. Everything from “Trap Queen” to “Heads Will Roll” kept the crowd engaged and bouncing to every beat. More or less a flurry of lights, streamers, and wild EDM, Skrillex created an incredible atmosphere which closed up Free Press with an electronic bang.
At the same time as Skrillex, Weezer played next door at the Jupiter stage and put on one of the most memorable concerts I’ve seen to date. The band played classics like Beverley Hills, Buddy Holly and Say It Ain’t So and Weezer fans sang along to every word quite passionately. Also a closer to the night, Weezer wrapped up their concert on a much more mellow, indie rock note.