Vance Joy performing at Splendour in the Grass.
Vance Joy performing at Splendour in the Grass. Marc Stapelberg

Vance Joy, City and Colour close out Splendour night two

HE HASN'T even released his debut album yet but Vance Joy can add Splendour headliner to his growing list of achievements.

The award-winning singer/songwriter, real name James Keogh, closed the GW McLennan stage last night, previewing songs from his upcoming debut album Dream Your Life Away.

Keogh rocketed to fame with his hit song Riptide, which topped Triple J's Hottest 100 list for 2013 and won him the APRA Song of the Year Award in Brisbane last month.

"I'm so happy to be here and be with you guys tonight," he told the crowd.

New songs sprinkled throughout his set included Georgia and Red Eye, which doubled as a tribute to the festival-goers who had travelled from far and wide.

"It's about the flight from Perth to Victoria," Keogh said.

"I dedicated it to anyone who travelled to be here."

He closed his set with a foot-stomping rendition of Riptide and a rollicking cover of Stand By Me.

While Outkast rocked the first night of Splendour, local hip-hop rapper 360 took up the charge last night at the Amphitheatre, amping up the crowd for Aussie indie rock favourites The Jezabels and British rockers Foals before City and Colour closed out the night.

Dallas Green, aka City and Colour, strode on to the stage looking like a cross between Elvis Costello and a character from Brokeback Mountain.

Dallas Green of City and Colour performing at Splendour in the Grass.
Dallas Green of City and Colour performing at Splendour in the Grass. Stephen Booth

With a white hat, thick-rimmed glasses and a plaid shirt and jeans, the scene changed entirely when he opened his mouth.

His voice is clear and fresh, like the Swiss Alps and he delivered the kind of honesty that made people jump barriers to get just that bit closer.

Fan Sarah Rogalski said: "some people think he's boring but I really love him."

She clearly wasn't alone.

With songs on themes like home, death, family and love, the universal appeal was obvious as thousands sang along, at one point allowing Green to pause and sing the harmonies.

As well as pulling off a song about wanting to be cremated and scattered in the wind, he also pulled off a cover of the Pink song Try. He dedicated another to his father.

"This song is for my Dad who always imagined I could do something like this, which is good because I never thought I could" he said, looking out across the massive crowd.


Indie dance group RUFUS closed out the Mix Up stage, filled to the brim with punters avid for their music.

The revellers sang every hit from the band's first album Atlas (2013).

Vocalist Tyrone Lindqvist highlighted the band's connection to the Byron Bay area.

"We love this place and we love this festival," he said.

"We love this place because it was here, only five minutes down the road, in a place called Ocean Shores, that we wrote our first song."

Today's final line-up includes Illy, Chvrches, Grouplove, First Aid Kit, Hilltop Hoods, Foster the People and Lily Allen.