Review: Portsmouth's Victorious Festival lives up to its name.
Tens of thousands of festival-goers descended on the South Coast this weekend to enjoy Victorious Festival - an event just a few years into its infancy but one that is already making waves on the festival scene.
Located on the beautiful coastline of Portsmouth, Victorious is a delight. Billed as a family friendly festival, the event attracted a crowd who wanted to do nothing more than enjoy the music and the stunning weather.
It's telling that Victorious is so young; much of the line-up is filled with new artists whilst major slots are taken by performers who perhaps otherwise wouldn't get such a high-billing. When we say second bill to one headliner was KT Tunstall whilst another was Franz Ferdinand off of the 90's, you'll know what we mean. But fair play, some of the oldies such as feeder and Dandy Warhol's certainly delivered.
Victorious did deliver a blinder on the Saturday night and we hope the booker was treated to a Strongbow or two, because the current Queen of British Pop was here to headline the second stage. Rita Ora more than stepped up to the challenge, owning the stage and entertaining the audience with a set rammed with hits.
At the same time, Stereophonics proved themselves to be worthy headliners on the main stage, performing hit after hit together with a few tracks from their brand new album. Again, a timely booking by the organisers and one very happy crowd.
Also notable from the Saturday, Nottingham indie-kidd Jake Bugg who definitely won himself some new fans over and played with more charisma than Sheeran could ever hope to have.
On Sunday, Raye, Pete Doherty, Slaves and Rationale all delivered, whilst Olly Murs brought the party home as the second stage headliner. On the main stage, the magnificent Elbow over-delivered, with frontman Guy Garvey telling his crowd how beautiful they look and how great they sounded. Elbow is a band which is simply stunning to hear live, with their huge songs sounding simply brilliant.
Other aspects to be commended were the Premium VIP area - well worth a bit of money to enable the festival-goers a bit of space, a sit down, and a smaller bar queue, and it was great to see Radio X broadcasting live from the Strongbow Yard too. Having Jonny Vaughan and Gordon Smart doing their thing live at the festival brought kudos and additional entertainment to enjoy in the blazing sun.
Throughout the weekend the local media gave a sense of absolute pride and joy to have Victorious taking place, perhaps not least because we're told it brings over £10million to the community. We were lucky enough to take time out from the festival to explore some of the City and let's just say it worked - we will definitely back to enjoy the many restaurants, coastal pubs and beautiful views over the harbour.
Victorious can only keep getting better and next year, we'd love to see more names on the lineup and perhaps a little less nostalgia. (Not meaning to be rude but has anyone actually listened to Franz Ferdinand since 2004?). There was so much love from the audience for Rita, Olly, Elbow and the Phonics, having names like this is hugely exciting for the area and we just know next year will be Victorious Festival's biggest and best yet.
Come back tomorrow for our Victorious Festival photo gallery.