Toronto’s unofficial summer kick off festival, Field Trip! The festival returned for its fourth year to Fort York Garrison Common on Saturday June 4th and Sunday June 5th 2016. The organizers of Field Trip have made the following claim about their two day festival.
“Field Trip is about so much more than just our great, world-class music. Food, art, comedy, family, fashion and technology are among our many inspirations and each year’s Field Trip is dedicated to collaborative explorations of all those themes.” I definitely agree with this statement for the simple fact that all of those elements were present at this years event. Field Trip stood out for its family-friendly focus, and this year its day camp programming (aimed at kids 12 and under, who get in free) was expanded. The fest also offered a mess hall, a comedy stage and virtual reality experiences. This is one of the easiest festivals to navigate, and one of the least imposing. You always feel like you have room to breathe, enough to eat, and you can get a beer in less than a minute wait.
This years line up featured: HeartStreets, Tor Miller, Meg Mac, Boy & Bear, Santigold, July Talk, The National on Saturday. Charlotte Day Wilson, Dear Rouge, Charles Bradley, Diiv, Of Montreal, Robyn on Sunday on the Garrison Stage. The Fort York Stage featured Kilimanjaro, Most People, The Beaches, Brave Shores Bully Holy Fuck, Jazz Cartier on Saturday. Kalle Mattson, Jason Collett, Lennon & Maisy, Eliot Summer, Ra Ra Riot, Basia Bulat, Plants & Animals on Sunday.
Sunday was a bust as a result of a severe storm. The organizers of the festival put a stop to the festival at 3:00pm as soon as the dark clouds rolled in. They started to evacuate the park. At approximately 3:10pm the sky opened up, the rain, thunder and lightening rolled in. While I was sitting in my van waiting for the weather to pass by I kept watching Field Trips Twitter feed for updates. After a 3 hour delay, the organizers announced that they would be opening the gates back up and putting on an abbreviated line up. Roughly an hour and a half later it started to rain again. Thats when I made the decision to put my camera away and head back home for the hour drive.
The highlight of the festival for me was July Talks performance. Leah Fay walked out into the crowd and uttered, “Don’t you dare touch my fucking tits.” Peter Dreimanis told the crowd that after moving to Toronto almost a decade ago, he tried to see The National with a fake I.D. When security laughed in his face, he grabbed the band and convinced them to give him passes to the show.