The day started off from 3.30 with plenty of time to get on site and get settled before a weekend of revellery.
To start with it was in Reds that Crosa Rosa kicked off the live music, opening the festival is sometimes a tricky slot as some may not have arrived on site so early but the venue soon filled up with a surprisingly keen good-sized crowd. 'Like A Lady' went down really well, their sludge-ladened grungey style a hit with the audience. The gravelly vocals turned screamier as the songs developed. It was a nice touch to start off songs with echoey reverb guitars before diving in and marching full pelt into their full thick fuzzy sound. With the energy of a Bleach era Nirvana ladened with catchy hooks this was a big sound with big hair. The set ended on a slower song, almost ballad like with it's sparce slower start it still rose up into a crescendo of doom. Admirable and unwavering effervescent energy throughout the set made them a great band to open up the festival and set the tone with great music and the boundless enthusiasm of a band who clearly love what they do.
Next up God Colony were right on schedule starting with a screeching sample before kicking in with a sporadic bass.
The set would possibly have gone down better much later in the evening it's hard to be in that mindset at 4.30 in the afternoon although did go down well.
This was a chance for beachgoers to chat and mingle as 2 guys with laptops aren't the most captivating sight, more of an entertaining background than a performance which is a shame as the music was good. It was odd walking though ... out into the cold grey daylight after being in a dark warm room emblazoned with a colourful lighting set-up.
This is just why this festival is so great, the sheer variety of acts over the three days makes for a trly eclectic experience and each one well worth checking out.
Next up were Band of Holy Joy a slower vibe live than on first listen, plodding along with minimal movement from the band, save the odd hand claps.
Next up, still on the Reds stage were Warmduscher. It is doubtful anyone was ready for what they described as "Just a bunch of stupid motherf**kers doing our own thing". Starting the set telling us we were "gonna get some cold hard music, real stuff ... and it's all for you" they weren't wrong! The thick accented entertaining frontman was full of swagger Tequila bottle in hand, as were all the band. Oozing with personality Warmduscher treated Beachgoers to raw and captivating noise-rock, playing with sounds and effects, making for a really entertaining performance full of humour.
With so much going on already and only just coming up to 8pm it was time to head over to Centre Stage which was now open for the evening to catch Glasgow's Honeyblood whose great songs resonate with deep melodic hooks. The sheer haunting beauty of Stina's vocals really shine through, perfectly supported by Cat's backing. We were left thinking that it always amazes us just how much impact a 2-piece can have with such a full sound. This was an atmospheric set, expertly delivered with dark and sultry undertones, both Cat and Stina have a great live energy and obvious passion for the music making the whole set a pleasure to watch.
Last year The Horrors Faris Badwan appeared with his band Cats Eyes, and they played a great haunting and moving set, yet fun in its drama. This year returning to the festival with The Horrors were the highlight of many of the festival-goers. Faris was aloof yet engaging, charismatic and captivating – a great front-man.
There was a bit of a break until 11.15 when The Orb took to Centre Stage, with Youth from Killing Joke who made a surprise appearance.
Rounding off Day 1 of the Festival was a Tim Burgess DJ set in Centre Stage and despite a late start time of 1.15am there were still plenty of keen festival goers ready to carry on into the small hours of what was a great festival opening day.