Wide Awake 2024 review: King Gizzard spark beautifully-chaotic scenes

We sent Jo Makabayi to Wide Awake 2024 to check out its ever-eclectic lineup.

Skiddle Staff

Date published: 28th May 2024

Wide Awake 2024 at Brockwell Park was set up to be a memorable one as the festival crowd were greeted by a warm, pleasant day, with blue skies and 20-degree weather by 11 am. Committed to platforming some of the most innovative artists around, the festival has built a reputation for championing forward-thinking artists at various stages of their careers and this year’s lineup was typically eclectic. 

Over at the Disco Pogo stage one of the first to artists to perform ahead of the jam-packed day was Special Interest. The punk band managed to grasp the attention of wandering festival-goers with the fresh sound of the New Orleans DIY scene on London soil. The catchy ‘Cherry Blue Intention’ had newly converted fans warming up their dance moves and relaxing into the melodic synth soundscape and the infectious lead singer’s energy. 

The festival's Scottish headliners Young Fathers took to the Wide Awake x KEXP main stage later on with the sun still diligently beaming. The crowd gathered zealously awaiting the acclaimed trio. Opening with their political noise anthem ‘Queen is Dead’ from their 2013 EP ‘Tape Two’ it seemed that the tone had been calibrated for the rest of their set. From the blaring sirens to the thumping percussion it opened a post-apocalyptic portal, allowing for people to writhe their bodies around savagely, completely losing themselves as they danced in the energy. Alloysious Massaquoi became a shaman for the next 60 minutes, controlling the tribe who were willing to do whatever he said. 

Hannah Diamond took to the Moth Club x Wonderland stage, and materialised as an up-and-coming bubblegum pop princess. Adorned with various pink bows and a cutesy pink backdrop with her initials ‘HD’ behind her as she took to perform. Her performance of the 100 gecs and Tommy Cash remix ‘xXXi_wud_nvrstøp_ÜXXx’ had fans excitedly reciting the lyrics. During Tommy Cash’s verse, she displayed an excitable dance routine to the hyperpop beat. Her singular presence on the stage captivated fans and encouraged a glittery and sparkly wave of support throughout her entire set as she performed some new tracks from her most recent release ‘Perfect Picture’.


The festival’s progressive message was plastered frequently on the surrounding walls, reading ‘Zero waste, no plastic’ and this was put into practice as all drink sales were served in recyclable cans. All water sold was the metallic energy drink appearance ‘Liquid Death’ canned water which amused audience members greatly. Along with the multiple stages dotted across the park, there was also a vast array of stalls from independent businesses and a Rough Trade signing tent for fans to purchase records from the bands and artists performing.

A lot of the day was spent anticipating the headline set from Australian polymaths King Gizzard and the Lizard Wizard, who closed the festival with a metal setlist that allowed the crowd to unshackle any remaining energy they had pent up. Brockwell Park was flooded with King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard T-shirts as UK fans flooded to see what will be their biggest UK show of the year.

Their set almost seemed to blend into one non-stop song, the metal thrashers permitted fans to create multiple rings of mosh pits that collectively turned and moulded into an eruption of flailing bodies mirroring the heavy, demonic guitar riffs. Opening their set with ‘Planet B’ as the sun began to set, the hellish pit began to open up and everyone was prepared to be sucked right in. No two sets from the band ever remain the same but one constant is their ability to throw their everything into their live shows which span a wide breadth of heavy genres, paying homage to icons of rock music’s history gone by while expanding on their own legend. 

Wide Awake 2024 was a breath of fresh air that showed us a sample of the invention found in modern alternative music. Each stage offered something different whether it be electronic, hyperpop, indie or rock. It’s this dedication to the different that keeps people coming back to Wide Awake each year. 



For more festivals from across the UK, head to our Festivals 2024 Inspire Me page to book your next trip.



Check out our What's On Guide to discover even more rowdy raves and sweaty gigs taking place over the coming weeks and months. For festivals, lifestyle events and more, head on over to our Things To Do page or be inspired by the event selections on our Inspire Me page.








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