Parklife 2012 live preview

Last week, we asked who your must-see headliner for Parklife is. With the bill boasting everything from the unveiling of dubstep pioneer Benga’s new live show, the long-awaited return of Robyn and crossover stars Passion Pit, there was plenty of competition for most-hyped act. But there were four clear favourites in our poll: The Presets, Justice, Nero and Rusko. With the Parklife tour kicking off this weekend, we decided to have a closer look at what to expect from the four standout favourites. Then flick over to the final page to wrap your ears around some mixes from a fleet of the line-up’s celebrated DJs. Shall we, then?


Undisputedly one of the biggest drawcards of the Parklife bill is the live return of The Presets. Back with their new album Pacifica after four years as out-of-the-limelite as the country’s biggest dance act can get, duo Julian Hamilton and Kim Moyes haven’t done a live show since Future Music Festival 2011. That alone is reason enough to want to catch the pair in the headline spot. But then there’s the fact that this will be the first airing of the new album – meaning we can look forward to hearing the driving techno of Youth in Trouble, the sea shanty-esque Ghosts and cuts from an album that seems to have been adored pretty much across the board for the very first time. Not to mention the back-catalogue of Beams and Apocalypso classics – none the least of which is the anthemic (and deservedly so) My People.

And you can count on an appreciative crowd. “The Presets don’t just seem to have the monopoly on the Australian dance scene, they also seem to have some of the most fanatic fans,” our reviewer for a 2009 Brisbane show wrote. “At particularly acute high points during the set, the front of the stage was nothing but a sea of power-grabbing, pointing, flapping, maddened jazz hands. Obviously seeing some of the crazed looks in fans’ eyes, even Julian had to comment, ‘Don’t get too nuts down the front.’”

When we caught Julian at the inthemix awards (accepting his award for Best Live Act, might we add), they were in the thick of rehearsals for Parklife. This being the first live show since the new album, it’s anyone’s guess what exactly The Presets have in store for us – but you can be sure they’ve put plenty of thought into their return to the stage. “It’s funny when we look at all our music put together. Like we’re putting together our new show at the moment for Parklife and you put all the music up alongside each other, and you listen to it all to choose what songs you want to play,” Julian told ITM earlier this month. “It’s sort of like looking through a photo album of your life or you’re seeing your life flash before your eyes. Ten years of music all put together at once.” It’s been a good ten years, and it’s sure to be a very good string of welcome-back sets.

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