Bestival, Robin Hill Country Park, Isle of Wight

4.00

 

The British summer put in a brief appearance just in time to finish off the festival season at the last (but not least) of its major events – DJ Rob Da Bank’s annual Isle of Wight bonanza, Bestival.

The icing on the weekend’s eclectic musical cake was provided by Stevie Wonder, whose sensational classicsfilled set drew a huge crowd to the main stage. Starting with “How Sweet It Is to Be Loved By You”, Wonder then proceeded to use the platform to do a bit of overseas canvassing for US President Barack Obama’s bid for re-election in November.

“We need to rid ourselves of racism and prejudice and hate – he knows about that... Are y’all with me?” he asked to cheers from the crowd, followed up by a string of crowd-pleasers including “ Superstition” and “Happy Birthday”.

Sigur Rós played their only UK festival show this summer in Sunday’s sunset slot, which offered the perfect backdrop for the band’s unique brand of ethereal, Icelandic ambience and epic soundscapes. It was a breathtaking performance of true beauty, but the band weren’t happy; they later apologised for what they called “a thoroughly miserable experience” set in the light (they were promised they could perform in the dark).

Sunday’s more relaxed pace offered the perfect comedown from the intensity of Saturday’s main stage party under the sun. Dancefloor anthems from Sister Sledge, comic relief from The Cuban Brothers and De La Soul’s blast from the past paved the way for indie darlings Two Door Cinema Club, whose tracks from new album Beacon (particularly “Sleep Alone”) went down a treat amid a string of quality radio favourites delivered with class.

Despite a slow start, it was New Order’s masterclass in 1980s new wave electro that captured the diverse crowd’s imagination with renditions of the stunning “Blue Monday” and “True Faith” that still sound as fresh as the day they were first laid down. “This is the song to end all festival sets – and it’s ours,” Bernard Summer smirked, by way of introduction for the band’s finale, Joy Division’s “Love Will Tear Us Apart” – performed under photos of the band’s late frontman Ian Curtis.

Draped in a floaty frock, her shock of red hair decorated with sprigs of ivy, a barefoot Florence Welch headlined with her Machine on Friday, showcasing those delectable vocals on “Rabbit Heart” and “You’ve Got the Love”.

The Bollywood Tent and fiery Arcadia stage provided theatrical settings for the cream of the weekend’s dance music – with highlights including the Ratpack, Jaguar Skills and Rob Da Bank himself.

Nods also deserve to go to Sweden’s Little Dragon, Warpaint and Bat for Lashes, while the size of the crowds spilling out of tents staging Justice, singer/songwriter Ben Howard and Mercury Prize-tipped Alt-J offered proof that their stars continue to rise.

Arts and Entertainment
Characters in the new series are based on real people, say its creators, unlike Arya and Clegane the Dog in ‘Game of Thrones’
tv'The Last Kingdom' embraces politics, religion, warfare, courage, love and loyalty, say creators
Arts and Entertainment
Unless films such as Guardians of the Galaxy, pictured, can buck the trend, this summer could be the first in 13 years that not a single Hollywood blockbuster takes $300m

film
Arts and Entertainment
Miley Cyrus has her magic LSD brain stolen in this crazy video produced with The Flaming Lips

music
News
peopleThe Game of Thrones author said speculation about his health and death was 'offensive'
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
The new film will be shot in the same studios as the Harry Potter films

books
Arts and Entertainment
Duncan Bannatyne left school at 15 and was still penniless at 29

Bannatyne leaves Dragon's Den

TV
Arts and Entertainment
The French economist Thomas Piketty wrote that global inequality has worsened

books
Arts and Entertainment
David Tennant and Benedict Cumberbatch

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Ben Affleck plays a despondent Nick Dunne in David Fincher's 'Gone Girl'

film
Arts and Entertainment
Pete Doherty (L) and Carl Barât look at the scene as people begin to be crushed

music
Arts and Entertainment

tv
Arts and Entertainment
Pete Doherty and Caral Barat of The Libertines performs on stage at British Summer Time Festival at Hyde Park

music
Arts and Entertainment
Ariana Grande and Iggy Azalea perform on stage at the Billboard Music Awards 2014

music
Arts and Entertainment

theatre
Arts and Entertainment
Zina Saro-Wiwa

art
Arts and Entertainment
All-new couples 'Come Dine With Me'

TV
Arts and Entertainment

TV
Arts and Entertainment

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Black Sabbath's Ozzy Osbourne
musicReview: BST Hyde Park, London
Arts and Entertainment
Ed Gamble and Amy Hoggart star in Almost Royal burning bright productions
tvTV comedy following British ‘aristos’ is accused of mocking the trusting nature of Americans
Arts and Entertainment
Sassoon threw his Military Cross into the Mersey
booksAn early draft of ‘Atrocities’ shows the anti-war sentiment was toned down before publication
Arts and Entertainment
Actors and technicians on the march against changes made by Hollande
theatreOpening performances of the Avignon theatre festival cancelled as actors and technicians walk out
Arts and Entertainment
Kanye West performed in a chain mail mask at Wireless Festival in Finsbury Park
Rapper booed at Wireless over bizarre rant
Arts and Entertainment

They're back, they're big – and they're still spectacularly boring

film
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

    The true Gaza back-story that the Israelis aren’t telling this week

    A future Palestine state will have no borders and be an enclave within Israel, surrounded on all sides by Israeli-held territory, says Robert Fisk
    A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: The German people demand an end to the fighting

    A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

    The German people demand an end to the fighting
    New play by Oscar Wilde's grandson reveals what the Irish wit said at his trials

    New play reveals what Oscar Wilde said at trials

    For a century, what Wilde actually said at his trials was a mystery. But the recent discovery of shorthand notes changed that. Now his grandson Merlin Holland has turned them into a play
    Can scientists save the world's sea life from

    Can scientists save our sea life?

    By the end of the century, the only living things left in our oceans could be plankton and jellyfish. Alex Renton meets the scientists who are trying to turn the tide
    Hollywood targets Asian audiences as US films enjoy record-breaking run at Chinese box office

    Hollywood targets Asian audiences

    The world's second biggest movie market is fast becoming the Hollywood studios' most crucial
    Grindr founder Joel Simkhai: 'I've found love on my dating app - and my mum keeps trying to hook me up!'

    Grindr founder Joel Simkhai: 'I've found love on my dating app'

    Five years on from its launch and Grindr is the world's most popular dating app for gay men. Its founder Joel Simkhai answers his critics, describes his isolation as a child
    Autocorrect has its uses but it can go rogue with embarrassing results - so is it time to ditch it?

    Is it time to ditch autocorrect?

    Matthew J X Malady persuaded friends to message manually instead, but failed to factor in fat fingers and drunk texting
    Westminster’s dark secret: Adultery, homosexuality, sadomasochism and abuse of children were all seemingly lumped together

    Westminster’s dark secret

    Adultery, homosexuality, sadomasochism and abuse of children were all seemingly lumped together
    A History of the First World War in 100 Moments: Dulce et decorum est - a life cut short for a poet whose work achieved immortality

    A History of the First World War in 100 Moments

    Dulce et decorum est: a life cut short for a poet whose work achieved immortality
    Google tells popular music website to censor album cover art in 'sexually explicit content' ban

    Naked censorship?

    The strange case of Google, the music website and the nudity take-down requests
    Howzat! 8 best cricket bats

    Howzat! 8 best cricket bats

    As England take on India at Trent Bridge, here is our pick of the high-performing bats to help you up your run-count this summer 
    Brazil vs Germany World Cup 2014 comment: David Luiz falls from leader figure to symbol of national humiliation

    David Luiz falls from leader figure to symbol of national humiliation

    Captain appears to give up as shocking 7-1 World Cup semi-final defeat threatens ramifications in Brazil