Goodbye Festival Season- RIOT Fest 2015

(Words and Photos by Josephine Tse)

“We received the final approved media accreditation list via Riot Fest HQ in Chicago and I am sorry to inform you that Riot Fest will not be able to provide you with press credentials this year. We sincerely hope that you are able to attend and enjoy the festival regardless and would like to offer you 1 complimentary 2-day General Admission ticket.”

…was the e-mail I received from headquarters, which left me upset, followed by feelings of surprise. I won a free ticket to Riot Fest! I can still generate content for RUtv News Music! That happened days before the night of the massive RIOT Fest ticket giveaway. After that, I didn’t feel so special anymore. RIOT Fest has a reputation of giving out tickets the day before the festival because of (rumoured) low sales.

What I’ve noticed from RIOT Fest is that they have a genre focused festival every year. This year, it leaned towards fans of heavy rock/metal and hip-hop/rap. Hey, right up my alley.

The only thing fans could not outrun was the weather. Honestly, it rained during so many music festivals I just ended up keeping an extra poncho in my camera bag. And it was no different this year- Saturday was hit with a short but very heavy rainfall, followed by a drastic drop in temperature.

But that didn’t stop the long list of artists, ranging from the likes of Alexisonfire, Weezer, Thrice, Die Mannequin, to Jazz Cartier, Tyler, The Creator, Wu-Tang Clan, Like Pacific, Partycat andFIDLAR from performing.

My highlights include:

  • Alexisonfire basically announcing that they were getting back together for a new album.
  • Weezer performing Pinkerton and the Blue Album live in chronological order.
  • Tyler, The Creator’s disappointment at Toronto’s awkwardness, ending his set with “I’m going to go back to New York now…”
  • How lovely Downsview Park can be when it is wet, flooded and muddy
  • The NSFW conversations between Alex Gaskarth and Jack Barakat of All Time Low

Despite catching a cold from my choice of wardrobe last weekend, RIOT Fest was a bittersweet farewell to the 2015 festival season. Until next year!

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