Roskilde Festival 2011 Roundup

Original article: Roskilde University, Papaya Magazine, Summer 2011 (www.thepapayamag.com) 

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This year’s Roskilde festival was something out of another dimension. For the first time in 6 years, the festival opened its doors at the stated hour, having implemented a new entry system that hindered premature breaching of the perimeter fences.

A chance for the underdog

Despite receiving significant criticism both before and after the event, Roskilde 2011 managed to provide its guests with an admirable selection of music to choose from. This was a Roskilde in which less known acts flourished, overshadowing some of the more popular players. The likes of Shangaan Electro, Nicholas Jaar, Charles Bradley, Dark Dark Dark, Reptile & Retard, OFWGTWA, La Makina Del Karibe and Calle 13 created pandemonium whilst making a name for themselves in the smaller, more intimate stages at Roskilde whilst more familiar names that had been tipped for success at Roskilde’s largest scene, “Orange” failed to live up to the hype. Yet whilst names such as Deadmau5, M.I.A and The Arctic Monkeys were nothing short of disappointing, other Orange giants such as Iron Maiden and The Strokes floursihed, delivering concerts that will be etched into Roskilde history for a while to come.

More than just music

Roskilde 2011 will also be remembered for the shifty weather, which flickered from soaking wet to scorching hot, allowing for skidding in the mud inasmuch as it allowed for long naps and sensual smoothies by the lake shore. Luckily, the downpour that ravaged Copenhagen on Saturday afternoon was less severe in Roskilde and by the next day, there was little evidence of it ever having been there. Over and above head-banging mosh-pit action, Roskilde 2011 provided numerous other activities on the festival grounds, ranging from wake-boarding to hot air ballon rides. The skate park in the West area of the grounds was a buzzing hub of activity yet again, as were the nearby football pitches and sports area. On a tragic note however, this years Roskilde will be remembered for the death of a young German woman who jumped several stories from the Carlsberg aerial ride, an otherwise popular and successful attraction. There is little evidence that more could have been done to stop the young lady from jumping from the top of the aerial ride, and the reaction of the emergency services warrants some praise but all the same, the loss of life at such a marquee occasion leaves an unpleasant aftertaste and casts a dark shadow over what was otherwise an amazing festival.

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