As you may know, Parachute Saturday is the most exciting day of the festival – its the day when you start to really explore the site and find all the different little things all over the place. Its also the day when the main CCM bands play, and tonight it was Anberlin and Day of Fire to get the crowd pumping. Did they manage it? Did they play well? Read on …
8.17am: Well, I’m up and about after getting my second call from Mum (honestly, I don’t even know why she calls me) Aside from that, I’ve got a media briefing at 9.30am, which should be fun. More later.
12.13pm: Back at camp after media briefing and interviews with Reuben Morgan and Day of Fire. What a weird experience! Reuben Morgan seemed tired, and a little disinterested. However, Day of Fire were really funny during their press conference, but not so lively during the one-on-one interview. One thing is for sure though: they, particularly singer Joshua Brown, must be getting sick of answering questions about Brown’s days with Full Devil Jacket.
12.15pm: Jahnea tells us that she saw Phil Baker on stage and said “hey, that’s Phil Baker!” I will now light myself on fire.
12.16pm: Another revelation: Rory actually broke his fingers jumping over a car yesterday (and no, I’m not giving you any more details of the mysterious car jump …)
3.20pm: Cell are playing on the Deluxe stage. So let me get this straight: they moved to Australia, got a record deal, recording their debut album AND making a new music video … so I guess you could say their tour of Aussie went pretty well?!
Actually Cell’s show was one of the best of the weekend – lots of new songs, which sounded great, and the regular Cell-hardcore-goodness was on display. One thing I did notice: the singer seems a little bitter that things didn’t quite work out for them in New Zealand. To paraphrase Michael Moore: “Shame on you, NZ fans! Shame on you!”
4.32pm: I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: the songwriter is always the best performer of a song. The proof? I’ve just arrived at the Palladium, and Reuben Morgan is playing an absolutely electrifying version of ‘With All I Am’. It just sounds better, more passionate, and way more exciting, than I could imagine it sounding when performed by any church band. Aside from that, the crowd is really into it. You just haven’t seen worship until you’ve seen it done at Parachute.
4.51pm: Another reason why Reuben Morgan is awesome: he played his older songs ‘What The Lord Has Done In Me’ (one of my favourites) and ‘My Redeemer Lives’ to finish his set.
5.06pm: You know, Late 80s Mercedes would actually be pretty cool if they learnt some new songs. The ‘Lose Yourself/Fresh Prince’ mix is getting a bit old.
6.50pm: I’ve got to say, Sarajane Auva’a has a fantastic voice. But I’m not so impressed with the all-male dance group that come on in the break – although if the plan was to collect adoring female fans, then they’re going about it the right way.
8.04pm: Is it possible for a band to reinvent themselves, adopt a new style and put together a kick-ass show in less than a year? YES! In the race for Most Improved Artist (well, more of a “nothing” than a “race”) Rapture Ruckus have officially taken the lead – Brad Dring has backed himself with a guitarist, drummer, bass player and DJ, and has put on one of the better live rap/rock sets I’ve ever seen.
Plus, he’s got a new batch of songs which fit the mood of the night perfectly. One of the things that stood out about his set was the number of catchy hooks in the songs, which made them perfect for the crowd to sing along to. Overall a great set, and I’m now waiting eagerly for debut album ‘I Believe’ to be released later in the year.
8.50pm: Anberlin kick off their set with ‘The Runaways’ – I’ll be back in a while.
9.26pm: Easily the best song of the night, Anberlin pull out a version of ‘Dance Dance Christa Paffgen’, my favourite track from Never Take Friendship Personal. Other Anberlin highlights: ‘Feel Good Drag’, ‘Ready Fuels’ and new song ‘The Thriving’.
Overall Anberlin were pretty good – very energetic on stage, which may have affected their sound a little bit, as it sounded a bit shaky at the start of their set before they settled into it.. When they applied themselves they sounded great (as evidenced on ‘Dance Dance’ and ‘Paperthin Hymn’). Another highlight was singer Stephen Christian climbing up the lighting rig and leaving his microphone at the top … which then forced one of the stagehands to climb the lighting rig to get the microphone back. Highest of high comedy.
10.54pm: Day of Fire have just finished their set – not too much to say really. They sounded much the same as in 2005, except for the inclusion of several new songs, and put on a great performance. One highlight (which is also pretty sad, on my part) was when singer Joshua Brown fell over on stage, then stood up and said “well, its not really a rock n roll show until someone falls down in the dirt.”
Highlight tracks from the set include ‘To Fly’, new song ‘Wake Me When Its Over’ and my personal favourite ‘Jacobs Dream’. I guess if there was a big difference from last year it would an aspect of cohesiveness which wasn’t really apparent last year. You can tell these guys have been jamming together for a while now, and it shows in their stage presence.
12.55am: Since my last update …
– I’ve queued for 50 minutes to get Anberlins autographs
– I’ve queued for 30 minutes to get Day of Fires autographs
– I’ve had a beef roll and a cup of tea
– I’ve watched Rory, Ben and Etienne run away after a policeman stopped them from playing Forceback with a broken plastic chair.
Yep, this is Parachute Saturday.
… and with that it was all over. Effectively one day left to go, and the promise of performances from Planetshakers and Delirious? Check out the Running Diary for Sunday to find out more!