Live Review: Field Day 2022

Live Review: Field Day 2022

All Points East presents Field Day 2022

Written by: Conor Fuller

With the dust still settling (quite literally) from the opening day of All Points East, it wasn’t long before Victoria Park was throbbing again for Field Day, East London’s annual al fresco feast of electronic music. Following their euphoric post-pandemic return last year, this year the team had pulled out all the stops with a leviathan double header: German innovators Kraftwerk and global superstars The Chemical Brothers. Anticipation was as high as the pollen count.

With the patchy grass like a tinderbox, SUCHI threatened to ignite it with her aggressive bass-heavy grooves; broken beats punching through the weighty noise just enough to give dancers something to hang on to – it seemed very appropriate she was playing the Firestone stage. Her set marked a turn in the afternoon, following the opening few acts, setting a level of sound and energy to be sustained through to curfew. Finishing on the warm embrace of Frankie Knuckles’ remix of Hercules & Love Affair’s 'Blind', she handed over to Anish Kumar, who jumped through slamming disco and house, which was hard to pull away from.

Over in the North Stage tent, dancers seeking shelter from the sun were whisked upon soaring synths across the North Sea by Tourist’s mesmerising live set. As saw waves crashed around the speakers, so did oceanic waves against rugged coast on the screens behind the stage. Almost an immersive cinema experience, at times, it felt like the perfect foreshadowing for what was to come from the afternoon’s headliners.

Over on the East Stage, HAAi could barely contain her excitement as she approached the decks. After setting the scene with atmospheric cuts from her recent album, 'Baby, We’re Ascending', her buoyant mixing-style quickly whipped up the crowd. Despite a dodgy CDJ upsetting her rhythm, but she was undeterred, dealing with the technical hitch impressively before ploughing into a relentless second half of her set. Stumbling over to the West Stage, Folamour’s genre-hopping kept the crowd on their toes, before the Bee Gees' 'Stayin’ Alive' knocked everyone off balance.

The light had just started to fade as the legendary Kraftwerk took to the stage – the sun dipping behind the stage like the lights going down in an auditorium. After grabbing a pair of 3D glasses, the collective conscience of the crowd began audibly whirring, humming like a machine on standby – eager anticipation for what was to come. Older fans speculated about the intriguing three-dimensional element, while younger imaginations spiralled, trying to perceive what seeing this other-worldly band would feel like.

The German outfit cemented their status as true innovators with an incredible visual spectacle, as images of satellites, mid-century machinery and even robotic effigies of themselves seemingly protruded beyond the confines of the LED screens and out into the crowd. A strange silence hung in the air, appreciation communicated not via applause by deep concentration. Stretching out before them, thousands of 3D-spectacled faces enthralled by the screens – like a bizarre drive-in movie scene. Iconic electronic anthems like 'Trans-Europe Express' and 'The Robots' were drilled across the park with crystalline precision and the highlight, blending 'Tour de France' with their 'Etape 2' version and its whirling chords, felt like a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Kraftwerk, legendary band of the past, still sounded from the future.

As the other stages began to shut down, the East Stage began to growl and stir. A sleeping giant was emerging, The Chemical Brothers were about to unleash an audio-visual masterpiece. 'Block Rockin’ Beats' a-plenty, they hurtled through hits such as 'Go', 'Hey Boy, Hey Girl' and 'MAH', keeping the pace high throughout their headline set. Psychedelic soldiers, ghoulish masks and acidic acrobats dancing across the screens made for a mind-bending experience, only twisted further by the arrival of two looming robots, sweeping lasers across the crowd like HG Wells’ heat rays. Saving the emotions of 'Star Guitar' and 'Swoon' for late in the set, 'Galvanise' delivered the final blast everyone craved before the festival gates opened. As the final machine-gun strobes finished, so did another incredible day of music. How will Field Day top it next year? We can’t wait to find out.


Dates for All Points East presents Field Day 2023 have yet to be confirmed, but for all the latest news and updates join the All Points East presents Field Day 2023 Waiting List here.

All Points East 2022 resumes this coming August Bank Holiday weekend with Tame Impala, The National, Disclosure, and Nick Cave & the Bad Seeds all headlining. To book the final remaining tickets, head to our shop here.


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