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Review: Synergy Live 2011


Synergy Live 2011You know you had a good time at Synergy Live if: you’re annoying anyone who will listen to the “you should have been there” stories, the line up was killer, and your tent did not make it the weekend. Check, check and check.

There’s no room here to relive all the anecdotes because no words can describe how funny it is to be woken up at 4 in the morning by a girl screaming at her boyfriend that she is a mini model. A mini model!  But the most memorable moment was on Friday night when a plastic spider gave a paramedic such a fright that he stuck a needle in a guy’s eye.  Wait…there is a 95% chance that I saw that on one of the short films.

The main camping site, food court and stage areas were well spaced and connected. There weren’t any poorly lit winding roads with lone drunk girls dazing about. And even if there were the security was a lot more pumped than last year. Dancing in the crowd was the only place security of 2010 was visible. Over all the general running of Synergy Live 2011 was tenfold better.

The only fail was the terrible distance from the car park to the campsite, though I made peace with this fact once I saw how central everything was.  A peace that was mildly shattered when I heard afterwards that there were in fact shuttles to and from the parking area.

The Cape weather was her usual bipolar self. The days were blazing while the nights took a 360˚ turn towards the North Pole.  Saturday night was particularly bad, so much so that the shading in the main stage area had to be removed by a mobile crane for our own safety. My finely planned CrashCarBurn/5 minutes of We Set Sail/Ph Fat plan fell through so I took to the Jagermeister booth and danced it off at the Red Bull Stage.  The wind was not nearly as bad there, just enough to make the shading look like it was moving to the bass while PH Fat’s inflatable guitars and tanks hovered above the crowd.

I might have found the main stage headliners, Black Rebel Motorcycle Club, more interesting if there had not been so much else to do.  Besides, The Narrow had given me a rock fix that I didn’t want to ruin.

The LMG stage was made up of a few (brilliant!) obvious choices like The Shadow Club, The Plastics and Peachy Keen.  But it was the less conventional choices such as Six Gun Gospel, a band with gospel undertones, that gave the stage its reputation for showing what you might not be listening to now, but soon.

 The Good
Saint Fearless
Taxi Violence
Jax Panik
Bruce Willis
Richard (his set got the 3pm party like it’s 3am)
The Narrow (Lonely, lonely, lonely…..!)
Crumb mushrooms at Daltons

The Less Awesome
The great trek to the campsite
Tasha Baxter’s near wardrobe malfunction.  If you want to go there do it properly. And don’t forget the pasty.
Sound fails on a few of the sets most notably aKing.
The neglect of the overflow camp and parking areas with regards to security and facilities

By Jana van Heerden

Synergy Live 2011 took place at Boschendal Wine Estate, Stellenbosch 25 – 27 November 2011

Click on the link to watch a video of Synergy Live 2011


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