Forbidden Fruit – Monday Review – 04/06/18
With War on Drugs, Grizzly Bear, Warpaint and Spoon it was a very impressive line up for Monday at Forbidden Fruit! There was a strong change in emphasis with an indie rock vibe replacing the electronic, rap and dance sounds from the earlier days of the festival. There was also a much older audience, with a ‘got a babysitter’ feel as David Kitt joked in his set.
On the final day, the Lighthouse stage was no more, with the tent gone entirely when the audience arrived. We were left with the Original and Undergrowth stage, along with the Bulmers Live tent, which featured a full Irish line up once more.
David Kitt opened the main stage, and with the release of his new album ‘Yous’, it should come as no real surprise. It was good to see him in singer songwriter mode after many years under various names and styles. He was joined on stage by a violin player which added to the sound.
Next up were the Unknown Mortal Orchestra who are a four piece psychedelic rock band from New Zealand. They released their latest album ‘Sex & Food’ earlier this year. Their lead singer/ guitarist Ruban Nielson even ventured out into the audience which really lifted the performance and got the crowd going.
Thundercat was one of the highlights of the Undergrowth stage and it was a tough choice between seeing himself and UMO. Rhye were one of the surprises of the day as their R&B sound went down a treat on the Undergrowth stage. They used violin and trombones to add something special to their sound. They were a new name to me, but easily did enough to justify their place in the line up.
Spoon played the main Original stage and their no nonsense rock style was well received by a laid-back audience. The sun made the crowd slightly sluggish but they seemed happy to sit and be entertained.
War Paint were the headliners on the Undergrowth stage. They received a huge ovation from the crowd with Billie Holiday being a particular highlight.
The next up on the Original stage were Grizzly Bear and there was a slight doubt in my mind whether their blend of delicate vocal harmonies and layered guitar would work in an outdoor setting. After an uneasy start where the vocals were difficult to hear, the sound improved and their set was enjoyable on their third performance in Ireland this year! They may not be the ideal outdoor band, but it’s always good to see them live.
The final band of the evening were the War on Drugs, and there was no such doubts in my mind about their sound! They were a band always destined for outdoor venues and they found a happy home on the main stage! Their sound owes a lot to bands from previous generations but the crowd lapped it up!
Another year of Forbidden Fruit passes and it was possibly the best yet. It owed a lot to the weather being near perfect, but Dublin is a beautiful place when the sun comes out. It’s a rare enough sight but when combined with good music, there’s not a lot to complain about!