Montreal has played host to Osheaga Music Festival since its start in 2006. Every year it grows in size and popularity – this year they hit 120,000 fans over three days- thereby attracting a broader range of musicians and fans alike. This year was no exception.Parc Jean Drapeau on St. Helen’s Island was the venue, and the minute I got there the sun was beating down and the humidity was so intense it was just absurd, but that didn’t stop anyone from having a good time. There were five stages (one entirely dedicated to DJs) spread across the park, simultaneously featuring different bands. It’s impossible to see every band, but the beauty of music festivals is that there are so many options – even if you’re walking from one stage to another, you get exposed to music on the way.                                                                                                                                                                                                                           First stop was to see Halifax’s Wintersleep who were participating in War Child’s “Busking for Change” event, where they play a stripped down version of their music in return for donations to the charity. Luckily, I was able to experience them as up front as humanly possible – three of the band members were sitting on chairs, I was sitting on the grass right in front of them. From Vancouver, Hey Ocean! also played for War Child. Their music is a mix of folk and indie pop and their performance started out well, but things quickly went amiss: they were having issues with their sound and somehow couldn’t really get it together and kept complaining. No offense guys, but no one’s heard of you so it’s way too early for you to be having a diva moment.

The day continued with performances by Of Monsters and Men to a huge crowd, Franz Ferdinand who ignited everyone’s dancing shoes, the Weeknd whose bass was way too loud that it completely drowned him out. Headliners that day were Icelandic sensation Sigur Ros, who managed to generate goosebumps on every human being around; French electronic duo Justice, and the one and only Florence + the Machine. Not surprisingly, her performance was flawless. She was so energetic, free spirited and dedicated to her music, backed by an incredible band including a harpist. I would even go so far as to say she was almost like a fairy godmother turning all of us into Cinderellas and making us feel as happy as anyone could be. I realize the ridiculousness of what I just said, but for anyone who has seen her live, you know what I mean; for those of you who haven’t, you will.

Day 1 came to an end and the combination of constantly standing, dancing around, singing along, eating overpriced mediocre food, baking in the heat, using outhouses and standing my ground in large crowds, left me exhausted. Day 2 was up next.

For photos check out Me vs. the Music Blog Page
For official video footage check out Osheaga 2012

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