Victorious has become one of the biggest events on the south coast's musical calendar. The family friendly festival continued to be committed to low ticket prices and offering something a little different; this year ticket holders gained free access to local attractions such as the Blue Reef Aquarium, there was a real ale festival on site, and for the first year there was a designated kids stage.


Saturday was off to a soggy start, but that didn’t dampen the spirits of thousands of festival goers who flocked to Southsea Common.

Kill It Kid(10/13) were the perfect band for a rainy day, their vocal stylings were reminiscent of Aussie favourite Jimmy Barnes but sadly that Aussie tone did not mean glorious Aussie weather. Throughout Kill It Kid’s set the early birds of the day happily danced along in the rain to a nice blend of bluesy rock.

Peter Hook And The Light(12/13) was an amazingly pleasant surprise as they knocked hits by his better known bands New Order and Joy Division, which created some of the biggest sing along moments of the day which really put the crowds in good form for the rest of the day.

As the rain poured The Magic Numbers(9/13) were tasked with preventing the crowd’s spirits becoming as dampened as the ground. Whilst the English rockers sounded great, their music was not what was needed to ignore the fact that you were standing in a downpour. Dreary is one word that word that could be used to sum up the music and the weather during the band’s 30 minute performance.

Scottish rockers The Fratellis(10/13) were the next band to be tasked with brighten the crowds spirits, and succeeded as people sung and danced in the rain to hit songs such as Chelsea Dagger. The trio also used their Victorious appearance to road test new material lifted from their recently released album Eyes Wide, Tongue Tied which received a warm response but did not provide big sing along moments.

Keeping the Scottish theme alive, indie rockers Primal Scream(13/13) stepped out on stage to packed Common as fans had flocked from across the festive site to catch the indie icons in action. Primal Scream proved themselves to be the highlight of the day as they belted out hits such as Acclerator and Can’t Go Back. no doubt about it; these guys should have been the day’s headline act.

Bringing Victorious day one to a close on the festival’s biggest stage was The Flaming Lips (10/13) who put on an interesting performance but sadly they were playing to a very empty arena as the majority of the crowd ventured to The Castle stage to watch Tinie Tempah after Primal Scream finished. Those who did hang around for the psychedelic rockers would be forgiven for thinking their drink had been spiked as the band’s set featured a giant inflatable frog, catfish, alien and Santa to name but a few. If that wasn’t strange enough, frontman Wayne Coyne also crowdsurfed in a zorb, and performed on top of the crowd in said zorb during the middle of their set. The Yeah, Yeah, Yeah Song sparked a mass singalong and was a highlight of the band’s hour long , The Flaming Lips main set finishes with A Spoonful Weighs a Ton, when the song wrapped up, the word ‘Love’ is repeated on a loop as it pulses on the giant screen at the back of the stage.


Texas(11/13) were on hand for our arrival on Sunday and quickly reminded the crowd how many hit songs and much loved tunes they had created, although the Common was not massively busy for their early set, the crowd loudly and proudly sang along track after track. By the end of the Scottish rockers set, everyone appeared to be wondering ‘what happened to Texas?’.

The highlight of Sunday came in the form of Hayseed Dixie(13/13); an American band who are cited as creating ‘rockgrass’, a mixture of rock and blue grass music. If you haven’t seen these guys in action, you are missing out; Hayseed Dixie play a mixture of cover versions of hard rock songs and original compositions in the style of rockgrass. These guys put on a sing-along dance-along set which everyone could and did enjoy.

The Darkness(12/13) impressed a packed out Common with hits such as I Believe In A Thing Called Love and Get Your Hands Off My Woman. Those who have seen The Darkness live in action before will know that at some point Justin will do a headstand on the drum kit and Dan will lift his brother Justin on to his shoulder and walk him out into the crown whilst Justin happily enjoys the ride and plays a guitar solo. The surprise for the band’s Victorious set was that Justin was lacking his trademark spandex which then allowed him to grab a camera and aim it down his pants giving fans the opportunity to see where the sun don’t shine over two large screens on either side of the stage.

Former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr (10/13) struggled against a poor sound set-up to entertain the masses who had congregated at The Castle Stage. Despite the poor sound level Marr put on a stellar performance with included The Smiths songs such as Panic and Big Mouth Strikes Again and solo material. Interestingly, the highlight of his set was his rendition of The Clash hit I Thought The Law which the whole crowd sang along with and gave raucous applause.

Ray Davies(12/13) rocked the crowd with some of The Kinks’ greatest hits over on the Common Stage. He effortlessly belted out classics such as All Day And All Of The Night and Waterloo Sunset, which made everyone watching melt, a tear or two may have even been shed by some oldies in the crowd. Davies was the perfect end to two days of fun and good tunes, there was barely a still body in the crowd during his hour long set.

Victorious lived up to its grand name, as the crowds made their way off of the festival site, the heavens once again opened leaving happy fans rather soggy on their journeys home.