Monday, 16 July 2012

Swedish House Mafia at Milton Keynes Bowl 2012

So this post isn't beauty, hair or fashion related. However, all three of these were completely ruined wrecked on Saturday 14th July when I went to see my all time favourite band play the iconic Milton Keynes Bowl. Now I'm semi-recovered I can now tell you all about just how amazing it was. I've been a massive fan of SHM from when I saw them play in Pacha Ibiza three years back, before they were as big as they are today. If anyone knows me, they will know I have a huge obsession with Swedish House Mafia, they haven't made a bad song as far as I'm concerned (Miami 2 Ibiza sends me cray when ever I hear it).When they announced a UK show the first thing I done was make sure I secured a ticket for myself, silly really as MK Bowl holds 70,000 people and there's a certain amount of people who have never heard of them. After counting down sleeps (yes really, I was like a child on Christmas Eve the night before and completely buzzing) Saturday finally came around and what a day I had. Grab a tea, coffee or a Carlsberg and settle down. It's a long post...

Example on stage at 3pm, already starting to get packed out

My boyfriend and I left home at 11.30am and the traffic was awful as we were just coming into Milton Keynes so we made it into the bowl at about 3.00pm bearing in mind Swedish House Mafia weren't due on stage until 8.55pm. The walk from where we'd parked was at least a 6 mile walk. Pretty nice on the way there in our comfy Hunters, but obviously a completely different story on the way back. So once we'd got in there after queuing outside for what seemed forever we made sure we saw the last of Example's set which if I'm honest disappointed me a little as he was nowhere near as good as when I'd seen him live before. The first thing I noticed was just how many people there was, knocking on 60,000 at this point which is a huge amount for a house music act. After being in the car for 3 hours from London, my boyfriend and I set of in search of essentials. By essentials I mean silly stupid amounts of Carlsberg beer and undercooked pizza. What else do you expect from a festival?

My boyfriend turning his swag on before MK Bowl at the car.

Set times for Milton Keynes Bowl 2012

We queued for 45 minutes, (YES 45 MINUTES!) for our beers which were a fiver per bottle. Hmm, I work in event management and even at Wembley Stadium lager isn't priced as much. I winced as I handed over my money to the woman and scurried away with our crate of beer in one hand, using the other to barge our way through yet another queue. After one or two god knows how many beers we were absolutely starving. My boyfriend and I aren't alcoholics by the way, we just love a drink sometimes and as he isn't or now wasn't the biggest fan of house music he needed some dutch courage! Bearing in mind the food and drink at festivals are always ridiculously overpriced. Bottles of water were £2.50, and I saw a stand where chips were £6.00. So, I've just paid £70 just to see SHM for the last time ever and now they want more money? Oh. Pizza it was then! A small 9" pepperoni pizza for £7.50 washed down by what was now luke-warm beer. How satisfyingly classy. Which was cold, unercooked and just plain grim. But what else can you expect at a festival? So we plonked ourselves on some concrete and people watched for a while. The sights we were seeing were absolutely classic and I've never seen so many girls in knicker shorts in my entire life. 

My boyfriend and I kicking back with warm Carlsberg and concrete, joy.
Yes, I look bloody awful, my boyfriend doesn't look impressed either. Combination of Carlsberg lager and pizza!  

I changed my outfit 3 times throughout the day! I started in hotpants and hunters, changed to leggings then back to hotpants! Perfect festival attire. There's one thing I just have to say in one word. MUD. Oh my goodness, the mud! I always definitely choose to wear my trusty black Hunter wellies when I go to a festival and thank goodness I did. The picture above just doesn't do it justice because I hadn't yet dragged my boyfriend to the front of a crowd 70,000 strong. We were literally sinking into it. After eating and drinking the majority of our beer crate (I sound oh so classy right now) we begun to make our way to the front of the crowd in time to see Alesso who I also quite like. I saw Alesso in Ibiza and he's more of a trance-house act. But then we saw this...

A casual mud wrestle. The mud was unbelievable as you can see.

You can instantly tell I was absolutely beside myself with laughter, the beer definitely didn't help. It was absolutely hilarious, people just thought it was the norm thing to do! It wasn't just these two, there were crowds of girls also doing the same thing! Of course when I suggested to my boyfriend we should join in I got dragged away from the temptation. So into the crowd we went, or should I say pushed and shoved. As you can see from the picture below there was alot of people that we were right at the front of. My boyfriend was hardly impressed by the amount of pushing but its all part of the day. Being 1 month post-surgery I was so cautious about being barged in my boobs but luckily it wasn't too bad at this point.

Alesso playing to MK Bowl. Picture from @Alesso

Next on to play was Calvin Harris who of course everyone has heard of, even my boyfriend (winning). Calvin's set was just under an hour and I was really shocked at how great he was. His set was really simple and he played all his classics including 'Your Not Alone' and 'Bounce'. I was really close to the front as you can see. The combination of pushing, barging, beer throwing, mud and rain was so not ideal but everyone still danced on. It's a real shame his set only lasted about 50 minutes as Pete Tong was next up...

Calvin Harris doing his thing at MK Bowl 2012

Pete Tong is a reputable DJ for Radio One, and he also has regular slots at some clubs over in Ibiza. I've seen Pete DJ twice, the first at Wireless festival back in 2009 when he supported Deadmau5 and Fatboy Slim (who I also am crazy about) and the second at Cafe Mambo in San Antonio, Ibiza. I have a bit of a confession to make here; my Mum has a bigger obsession with Pete Tong than I do. Cringe. He's done a great job in the past so was really looking forward to the next hour as a warm-up before Swedish House Mafia. He came on to loads of cheers and excited festival go-ers but honestly he was just awful. I know it's really bad of my to say it, but he just didn't have the same edge as Alesso and Calvin Harris as his music is more trance, hence there was no drop in a song which for a crowd of SHM fans is a no-go. If I'm honest I kept checking the time to see just how long Swedish House Mafia were going to be which is a complete giveaway as to how bad he really was (Sorry Pete). 

Pete Tong in Cafe Mambo, Ibiza when I last saw him

I felt slightly bad for him when he finished his set as he got booed off the stage which is all fairness never happens at just a pure music based festival. We got speaking to a group from Northampton who were absolutely hilarious. By this point I honestly think we'd had to much to drink. The alcohol and music together make you the friendliest type of person ever. There was a gay couple who were so lovely and their friends over from Northern Ireland. Speaking to them really made the time pass by before the MK Bowl Class Photo was taken at 8.30pm using a 20 billion pixel camera, the largest one in the world that exists! I haven't seen it yet as it is still being uploaded from Saturday, but I will put that into this post once I find myself (it's like a massive game of Wheres Wally?). So, the countdown had really begun now. I was getting unbelievably excited and couldn't wait to see my beloved Swedish House Mafia. 

Swedish House Mafia at Milton Keynes Bowl 2012 ... Amazing

The time had finally come for Axwell, Steve Angello and Sebastian Ingrosso to come on stage and by now I was ridiculously excited. And standing at the front of a 65,000 strong crowd for hours was SO worth it. SHM opened with Greyhound which of course was amazing. The two hour set was amazing, and included a massive amount of fireworks, poppers, toilet rolls (yes really) and streamers. I got lost underneath some of it at one point which wasn't great but somehow the crowd pushed me back to my boyfriend. They came on to a deafening mount of cheers and people jumping on top of others shoulders, beer and mud spraying from every direction you can imagine. By this point I had soaking wet hair with beer and mud up my legs and arms, even my face. A very emotional speech from Axwell had everyone with a tear in their eyes, "You guys are the best fucking fans ever, we love each and every one of you shit loads. The UK has shown us nothing but fucking love!" 
I had the greatest experience seeing SHM again, for the last time together as I'm not on the White Isle again this year. If you get the chance to see them while you're on holiday this year, make sure you go. They've never disappointed me ever, and the live shows are amazing, the atmosphere is unreal...

Another lanyard to add to my collection. SHM

Were you at Milton Keynes Bowl on Saturday 14th July 2012? Do you love SHM as much as I do?

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