Held in Laugardalur valley, in the middle of Reykjavík, last weekend, the second Secret Solstice festival was all round a great success with three days of solid performances by a diverse selection of artists.
On the Friday I caught a glimpse of Icelandic bands HAM, Retro Stefson and GusGus and Kelis closed the night with a great performance, bringing the boys and girls to the yard, dancing.
Saturday’s schedule was not as thrilling as the other two days and in my opinion a little too chilled for a Saturday night. Don’t get me wrong: I did enjoy shuffling between the five stages and catching interesting acts, yet it felt more fitting for a Sunday evening. I saw Bam Margera’s band play and Icelandic rappers Gísli Pálmi and Blazroca. The secret headliner of the night was Busta Rhymes yet he played too early for my taste as the mood dropped slightly after he preformed. The rest of the night I checked out this and that, yet not settling on anything special.
Photos: Páll Stefánsson.
Sunday, however, was amazing. Not only were a variety of great artists spread over the entire day, the sun came out to shine throughout the day! Around 10,000 concertgoers gathered to enjoy solid performances by artists such as The Wailers, MÖ and FKA Twigs. Then the legendary rap group Wu-Tang Clan closed a great night, managing to get almost everyone chanting along.
I was impressed by the festival’s set up, the two large stages had plenty of space for the audience and the three smaller stages offered a cozier atmosphere. However, with so many stages it could have been possible to include an even greater variety of performers. I personally feel there was a little too much focus on rap and electronica, at least for my taste, and there could have been space for more rock.
On Saturday I peeked into Hel, where the after party took place. Being crowded and pitch black inside, it was in complete contrast to the rest of the festival, which as the name indicates, celebrates the long bright summer days. It’s impressive that a festival of this size had no major slipups given that it is only in its second year. Last year there were criticisms of the festival’s token system used for drinks and food but this has since been abolished.
Great weather, artists and setup resulted in a festival to remember and one which left me looking forward to next year.
Check out more of our photos from the event here.
Anna Guðjónsdóttir - annagaua(at)gmail.com
Anna is currently in her first year of a MA in Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Iceland.