Wednesday, 16 July 2014

NASS Festival 2014

I've just got back from NASS Festival and I'm feeling pretty shattered! The weather was really lovely for most of the weekend, but that did mean getting into bed very late and being woken up very early by the sun beating down on our tent. It feels like you're being cooked alive when you wake up in a stuffy tent!

We were there for the weekend running the Headphone Disco show on the Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights on the Slammer Stage. Last year we only did the Thursday night, when we were the only main entertainment on, before the festival fully opened. I had been looking forward to going back and seeing a bit more of the festival as last year I literally drove in, unloaded, did the show and left again. I had Wireless Festival the very next day, so drove straight down to London for that. 

Repeating the format that worked so well last year, I played mainly Indie tunes on one of the Headphone Disco channels and I had a selection of awesome DJ friends of mine playing more specialist music on the other channel, including Drum and Bass, Dubstep, House and Hip Hop. It was great to DJ alongside the lovely DJ Elle B, Tiger Lightning, TiKi and Fringe and to have my friend Kishi MCing over one of the sets to close the festival too.

I recruited and managed an enthusiastic team guys and girls to run the distribution, who worked hard to ensure the all-round Headphone Disco experience was good for the festivalgoers who came to party with us.

NASS Festival is promoted as a celebration of the lifestyle of BMXers and skaters and hosts a series of competitions over the weekend with cash prizes. The main music programming doesn't start until late afternoon, with the focus on the action sports during the day. We checked out the amazing skills of athletes in the Pro Park during the day and enjoyed watching the Parkour final on Sunday afternoon too. There's also a big dirt jump track on site, which was great to sit and watch the daring BMXers do their thing on that too. 

One of my highlights of festival was watching the motorbike stunt show on the Saturday afternoon, which was simply incredible to watch. The run up and landing area seems so short and every jump had me amazed! I ended up taking hundreds of pictures, but I really like this photo of two riders in mid air at the same time. They also did backflips, tricks where they have their legs in front of the handle bars and tricks where they're hanging off the back of the saddle in mid air. Incredible.

Motorbike stunt show

NASS put a lot of effort into the visuals and imagery at the festival, with the creative team headed up by a guy called Ben, who I know through friends in Cheltenham from a few years back. He'd got two artists, called Paul Monsters and Loch Ness Art, to do some big graffiti pieces on the sides of two warehouses on site. Check out one of the pieces in the photo below. There was loads of other cool creative stuff on site, including loads of spray-painted scrap cars made into crazy artistic pieces and some great signage too. I took a photo of a couple of the signs that were advertising or leading people to the silent disco.

Graffiti artwork by Paul Monsters and Loch Ness Art

Creative signpost at NASS

Silent Disco set times at NASS

It's nice to be able to wander around  a festival site before it opens. We had some fun posting for photos on the winners podium on the Friday morning before the gates opened to the public! 

Born a winner!

On Friday afternoon, Emily and I spent ages chatting to a nice chap from Howl London, a clothing brand who were selling stuff and promoting their brand at the festival. We originally went over to check out the stand as they had a really nice display made out of old wooden pallets and they had an amazing surf pong table out the front that you could play on! They're using the surf pong table at two festivals this summer, then it'll be given as a prize to a lucky winner of their competition that you can enter by signing up to their mailing list. I hope we win as it's such a great idea and it was so well made! They have some great t-shirts, hats and other nice stuff, so check them out.

Howl London surf pong table 

Vision Nine, the company who run NASS Festival also operate Boardmasters Festival, which we're heading to with Headphone Disco next month. I'm told it's much bigger and with a completely different vibe and I'm really looking forward to heading down. I hope the weather is as good there as it has been this weekend. It'll be great to spend a few days on the beach and visit Newquay town. We're planning to have a surf lesson too, so all in all it should be a great few days away!

UPDATE: I've just had some great shots sent over by Sean Delahay Photography...

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