REVIEW: Creamfields Festival

15:25:00

So here it is... time to review the last Summer festival of 2016 *cries*... even if it is really late. 
(I'm hanging on to summer ok...)

Last week I attended a popular techno/ deep house event in Newcastle, named Future Funk @ Digital. If anyone is from the north east, you will have most likely heard of Digital or Digi (as we call it)... It's a very popular, very large, night-club in Newcastle Upon Tyne which holds some of the best club nights in the UK and some of the biggest international DJs like Marc Kinchen (MK) and DJ EZ as well as recent DJs such as Patrick Topping, Bondax and Chris Lorenzo.

After last week's events, I thought I'd get my ass into gear and talk about one of the best weekends of the summer. I always look forward to Bank Holiday weekend in August. Not only for the long weekend, but because I'll most likely be at a festival. Whether that be Leeds and Reading or Cream.


To anyone who attended Bestival or any other festival after August Bank Holiday weekend, I am very jealous. However, I must say, people are right when they say there's nothing worse than Creamfields Festival depression.


For those that don't know, Creamfields is a (usually) 3 day festival in Chesire, Daresbury UK and is an all-round DJ fest. But, 2016 seen Cream extend to a 4-day festival and the introduction of The Steel Yard arena as well as several major stage/tent re-vamps.

I can't deny that 2015 was an unbelievable year at Creamfields. As a newbee to the festival, after attending Leeds fest in both 2013 and 2014, I really did not know what to expect. But I just knew I would love Creamfields, but just not as much as I did.


So I'm going to give you a full low-down on the festival. Price/weather/recommended DJs etc. So continue reading if your interested in Creamfields or whether you're a nosy so-n-so like me.


PROS

Focused Genre

Some festivals these days seem to be a mish-mash of every genre of music. Which, I mean, is great because they attract a large amount of people and add a lot of diversity to an event... but this can be annoying if you're interested in just one genre.


But, if you're interested in House Music and you want to spend your festival money wisely on just one genre, Creamfields is for you. Because this is my area of interest, I usually know most DJs on the line-up and know what to expect when I get there. Of corse, if you're not a house kind-a person, Download Festival is another good example of focused genre but with rock/metal/heavy bands. So if that's your forte then go for it too!



Price

Price is very important. Obviously.


Festivals are becoming very popular, especially British festivals, and they're all competing to get your attention and money. But, Creamfields is actually one of the cheapest and best value for money. As with many festivals, the price does seem to increase every year (annoyingly), but the 2017 Creamfields price for a 3 day standard camping ticket, starts at £180. For the names on the line-up, this is a ridiculously low price.

Landscape

To be perfectly honest.. I don't know why the mud isn't a huge problem at Creamfields. It must be down to the drainage of the site because it never gets horrendously muddy. Yes, of corse, it gets quite boggy, its a British festival, but nowhere near as horrible as Leeds Fest as I've learnt from experience, Both 2015 and 2016 weather at Creamfields was pretty dry and only surprisingly rained a little. Not sure if that's just pot luck but never mind.


The camping isn't too hilly either. Yes, the walk into the festival is a pain, like any other UK festival, but there isn't many huge hills to drag your bags up.



Arenas

The arenas, apart from the music itself, are personally my favourite part of Creamfields. They are just mind-blowing; especially the Steel Yard which was installed for 2016. The arenas are a show in themselves. And when partnered with fire, smoke machines, lazers, strobe lights etc, they just look amazing. A lot of other festivals are all about the music, but Creamfields definitely puts on a show. You will never get bored of the arenas for sure.


Camping


The camping site at Creamfields is also very spacious and has plenty of colours to camp within. Toilets/Portaloos are dotted around all over and in pretty decent reach to each colour. They also get cleaned more often than at Leeds festival and toilet roll always seems to be provided- which is a plus. There are also plenty of burger vans/noodle stands/waffle carts to buy grub from in each camp as well as huge water fountains.


Another thing is signal. I know this might not be the first thing on your mind when going to a festival, but if you loose your friends, having no signal is an absolute pain. When I attended Parklife, I lost people for full days on end because I had zero signal- which put a whole downer on the day. But I've never had any problems at Creamfields.


With every good event, there always seems to be some aspects which aren't as great. So, to give you a full honest low-down, I'm going to include a few criticisms.. but these will definitely not stop me going back next year.


CONS

Weekend/Dates

First of all, it's really bloody annoying that Creamfields overlaps with two other major British Festivals: Leeds and Reading festival. Before I was 18, I attended Leeds Fest for 2 years (2013/2014), which I have mentioned several times within my blog, and it was great! Leeds is kind of a 'no frills' festival and is renowned for it's boggy fields and horrendous weather. Like Marmite, you'll either love or hate it.


2016 seen Leeds and Reading churn out a brilliant line-up: one I was unable to experience due to my love for Creamfields. Of corse I still had an unbelievable weekend Daresbury's house festival, but I honestly do think I would have attended both if they had been different weekends.


Also, Bank Holiday weekend is also a pain if you have a job.


Closing of the festival/Times

Again I'm going to use the comparison of Leeds fest..


Creamfields has a very early closing time. Which is surprising due to it's DJ/ Night-club genre. Both Friday and Sunday nights close at 11pm which is also really annoying. Although the Saturday night closes at 4am, once your back to your tent on Friday/Sunday there is literally nothing to do.


No camp DJs, no fires allowed, no after-dark events... literally, if you don't have a speaker, be prepared to be bored. I do understand that after-dark music licensing is difficult because of noise complaints etc, but it almost dampens the evening when you return to an empty, silent camp. Words of advice: bring a speaker, a chair, warm blankets and make the most of the daytime.


Leeds festival however doesn't really have a closing time. Each camp colour has it's own camp DJ and fires are allowed, so you can stay up till early hours dancing or just chatting amongst friends without getting cold. If I remember correctly, the arenas at Leeds fest close at around 11pm yet, Piccadilly Party (a DJ set in the centre of camp) stays open till around 3/4am, and each camp DJ stays running till past 5am. It almost feels as if you get that bit more for your money... but then again you paying that bit extra for a Leeds/Reading ticket.



Planning on getting dolled up?

Girls... another thing is to forget those nice lace up sandals and new Rat n Boa shorts you wore for Parklife. The Camping life also brings the dress-down style. You can buy a shower wristband which grants you a shower every day of the festival but it will cost you. I would say that for Creamfields people get that little bit more 'dressed up' than Leeds, but I still wouldn't bring any new clothes with you- they're most likely to get ruined.


So there we go.

Just a short one, but a review of my time at Creamfields to help you out with whether your undecided about attending next year. A lot of people always ask, 'oh was it better than last year?', 'will you go again next year?' etc... And the answer to both of those questions are a big, fat YES.

Creamfields is just me in a festival. I can't get enough of it. And it seems to get better every year. 2016 introduced a complete re-vamp of most stages and 2017 welcomes the 20th Anniversary of the festival: which is going to be a big one.


I am also attending 2 WHP events in Manchester soon so I'll most likely be doing a review on those when they get here- so if that is your sort of thing then watch out.


Thank you so much for reading! Hope you all are hanging on to summer like I am :(


Have a wonderful Tuesday,


Lots of Love,








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