Coming home with a possible concussion (ie. multiple head elbows) and a bruised cheek may not sound like I had an evening of fun but those are the byproducts of being in a moshpit. After a rather disastrous first day of the ParkLive festival when Marilyn Manson’s performance was cancelled due to a bomb threat, the atmosphere for day 2 of the festival was a little tense. Luckily the headliner of the second day of the festival, The Prodigy, saved the festival, soothed the agitated crowd and rocked the house down!
I arrived at the festival early enough to enjoy refreshments (such as veggie hot dogs!) and get a decent place in the crowd. This is the second year of the ParkLive festival. Last year some of the performers were a Russian favourite Zemfiva, Within Temptation. and Crystal Castles. Much like last year, the festival has been cursed with raining weather and some unforeseeable problems. With Manson cancelling this year and Crystal Castles almost cancelling last year, it has not been easy for ParkLive. Luckily with a line-up featuring The Prodigy, Skillet, Enter Shikari, Die Antwoord, Wolfmother, Deftones and many others, this year was bound to attract a large crowd, come rain or shine.
Only the second day did I discover the location of The Chemical Stage. While waiting for the main act and wondering around I stumbled upon a group called Therr Maitz. I had never seen them nor heard of them before but the lead vocalist did have a lovely melodic voice and the cover songs they sang did boost my mood. In light of The Prodigy playing later that day, they even did a cover of “Out of Space” as tribute to this momentous occasion. They also performed their own original song, “I’m Feeling Good Tonight” which I found quite charming.
Making my way back to the main stage, Enter Shikari were performing prior to The Prodigy. While I may not be a fan of hardcore or screamo bands, I was impressed by their showmanship and ability to entertain a crowd. They really connected with their audience and made quite an impact. The performers attempted some stage diving into the loving crowd but alas were stopped by the strict Russian security. Enter Shikari lit the match, poured the gasoline and The Prodigy made the explosion happen!
The atmosphere of the festival had been established and The Prodigy blew it completely out of the water. As they appeared on stage, they were greeted by a crowd of thousands which I was sure could be heard for kilometers away. Starting with one of the their number one hits, “Breathe,” The Prodigy began playing one of the most epic gigs I had ever witnessed. The crowd went truly wild with a mosh pit forming quite quickly and sweeping me into it. I spent most of the gig looking at the backs of people’s heads and being squished by many sweaty crazed fans. A few times I wondered if one of my ribs would be broken from the pressure of people pushing me from all sides. The mood of the crowd was intoxicating filled with pure energy and love for The Prodigy. Some fans had even come from cities as far as Vladivostok to view this extraordinary gig. The Prodigy performed many fan favourite songs such as “Smack My Bitch Up,” “Poison,” “Firestarter,” and “Their Law.” They finished their encore, as demanded by the crowd several times, with two classic early Prodigy songs, “Out of Space” and “Comanche.”
I felt completely beaten and exhausted but extremely satisfied once The Prodigy finished performing. It is impossible to truly capture in mere words what magic had just occurred between the stage and the audience on that day. The Prodigy not only delivered but created the atmosphere that all music festivals and concerts strive to have, a pure love for music. It can even be compared to an inspiring religious experience!
Before making my departure home, I decided to stay and watch one more band, Die Antwoord. I may not be a fan of the group but I was still really impressed by their stage presence and their ability to wow a crowd! Even I busted a move to the two songs I know by them, having seen the music videos, “Baby’s On Fire” and “I Fink U Freeky.” Yolandi’s high-pitched voice did get annoying after a while.
Overall it was a very successful day for ParkLive! Going to sleep that night I was anticipating an equally wonderful day for the last day of the ParkLive festival on Sunday.
All photos taken from TheProdigy official FB page.