The road to This That was admittedly, one with a few rocky bumps – but most definitely still packed with excitement. With the loss of two major headliners (Sticky Fingers and Goldlink) in the months and weeks leading up to the festival, punters quickly turned their attention to the rest of the acts on this massive line up, which remained chock-a-block with both up-and-comers and megastars in the Australian and international music scenes, across all genres. The weather was sweaty, but not as sweaty as the sweat we created by cutting shapes. Let’s dive into This That 2018’s most memorable moments.
THAT… Mood was positive and ultra-safety-focused:
Photo credit: This That Facebook Page
Upon lineup announcement, This That trod their way through a solid amount of slack for their choice to include the now-infamous Sticky Fingers as one of their headlining acts for 2018’s festie. Upon Sticky Fingers ditched out of controversy, This That were left with a big pile’o’hate to deal with for their initial choice. In a statement to Music Feeds regarding Sticky Fingers’ inclusion on the bill, This That organisers, Motherboard Events, said, “The This That team do not condone abuse and strive to create a safe and welcoming space for all those attending the festival.”
So did they live up to their promise? As far as we saw, This That did a great job at creating a vibe filled, safe place for punters to roam around and enjoy their day. From boutique food and drink selection, to the massive slingshot carnival-style ride, to the music and vibes flowing about, the day was overall joyous, and most definitely not threatening. In fact, the police, medical professionals, and safety presence was noticeably strong. In regards to the level of douchebags – it’s just a fact that no one festival can stay completely safe from this. The touted tops-on policy was very loosely enforced, but this could be attributed to maintaining human safety in the 35-degree heat, rather than the organisers simply letting muscle bros run loose.
THIS… Bass music bangs, bro:
Photo by @zennieshia
This That has proved itself time and time again as a festival for all. With punters young and old, from all locations, there was truly an act for everyone on this lineup, from rock, to electronica, to heavy, to rap. But what really stood out was This That’s incredibly hospitable accommodation to the bass heads in attendance. From rising DJ Godlands, to the earth-shaking B2B trio of Herobust, LUUDE (plus Badrapper), and Just A Gent hit the festival to break a few metaphorical necks, before the night closed on our almighty bass lord, RL Grime. And as I overheard one punter say, “You can never complain about getting to see RL Grime,” and yes, Random Punter 32947, you were correct – whilst many a promoter have brought the trap king to Australia over the past few years, RL Grime is just one of those acts we doubt anyone will ever tire of seeing. Impeccable mixing, the dirtiest drops, and incredible crowd energy are massive understatements to describe what RL Grime brings to a live show, and This That was no exception.
THAT: Weather was most definitely, not what you want at a festival:
Photo by Mitch Lowe: That moment when the sun fucked off <3
Hitting a lovely 31 degrees by morning and a glorious 35 at its peak, enjoyment of all these great acts was definitely halted by the burning need to look around through blurry eyes for a sight of the beverage seller. Note: despite their lack of liquid, our empty water bottles were forced into an early death on arrival, delegating you to lukewarm free taps, or a cheeky $5 bottle destined for a local turtles’ nose. Whilst standing in line for a refreshing sip of anything, I found myself wondering; has there ever been a festival in Australia where the weather was just… good? Not too hot, no pouring rain, not sub-zero degrees once the sun went down? If you’re aware of such an event, please hit me up so I can live through your experience, because – no, this has never happened to me. And of course, none of this was the fault of the lovely folk at This That – just an unfortunate sweat stain on an otherwise fantastic day!
THOSE… Quality hip-hop artists filled the Goldlink-shaped hole in our hearts:
Photo by Mitch Lowe: Allday makes his grand return to the Aussie festival stage.
Although our hearts were still mourning the sweet styles of Goldlink, there was a whole lot of hip-hop acts to make up for it along the way, crash tackling almost every notable sector of rap music – minus the sweet, R’n’B infused sounds of…. never mind. Manu Crooks took over US trap-rap duties, hyping up a very white crowd to unimaginable levels mid-afternoon. Later on, Adelaide’s hometown hero Allday brought his masterfully casual rhymes back to Australia post his venture to the USA. ILLY also made an appearance, satisfying the Aussie rap crowd inevitably Newcastle drew. Safe to say, hip-hop heads definitely got their fair share of love at This That, be it through these artists, or the many who threw out rap heaters in their DJ sets.
THESE… Women are shining:
Photo by @zennieshia: Godlands and Ninajirachi packed out the main tent way before peak hour.
Most of the time, we’d consider 1:30pm as way too early to rock up to a 12+ hour festival. But if you told that to the crowds Ninajirachi and Godland’s pulled, their mere presence would prove you wrong. Punters came out in swarms to get an early earful of Central Coast local Ninajirachi’s mix of jersey, trap, and all-around cute tracks to bop to, in a tent filled to the max. Mega-soulful songstress Samsaruh also rocked the opening slot to a sizeable crowd. And the women of This That kept on killing it, from open to close. Nyxen, Godlands, Lex Deluxe, Sports, Purple Sneakers DJ’s, Amy Shark and Broods all took to the stage and performed stellar sets to the This That crowd, who were eating the tunes out of their hands – keep on shining, gals.