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Festival review: British Summer Time: Kylie Minogue


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The sun is finally shining and the masses are making their merry little ways to London's green spaces.

In the heart of Hyde Park, Barclaycard have yet again brought back British Summer Time, a music festival showcasing the best music, comedy and film, catering to everyone's needs.

With the expected street food stalls, Chinese lanterns and toilet queues far too long, BST is everything you expect it to be. Last night saw Kylie Minogue headlining, joined by the likes of Years & Years, Chic, Nile Rodgers, Mika and Grace Jones.  

BBC Sound of 2015 winners and our favourite electro-pop trio were nothing less than a delight. Lead, Olly Alexander, convulsed and distorted to his own creations, showing us the best that Years and Years can be. Already released tracks, including ‘King’, that went to Number One, won over crowds with their recent familiarity, while upcoming releases got us gagging for more. Adding "I wrote this when I was dumped," there's a continuous sense that Olly is a great and genuine guy, proudly showing off his hard work. Their album is out July 10th.  

Next to the stage was Mika, nothing less than a blast from the past. From ‘Grace Kelly’ to ‘Lollipop’, Mika sang and the sun came out. His set was a constant stream of "oh, I know this song," in a vibrant and colourful performance. Dressed in a suit and wearing the most sparkly blue shoes, Mika is a born and bred performer who knows how to get the crowds going.  

From there, Hyde Park's crowds got their boogie on and freaked out as disco-legends Chic took to the stage lead by founder Nile Rodgers. The ‘Get Lucky’ producer gave an emotional speech about how happy he was to perform at Hyde Park after four years of being cancer free. Chic are one of the most universal performers. Not a song went by without the crowds instantly recognising them. Dressed in suits so white, not even Persil could achieve, Rodgers brought soul to London, armed with a trumpeter, saxophonist, bassist and beloved drummer; Biscuit. 

Rodgers brought on what seemed short of 100 guests, including Sam Smith and Cara Delevigne to shake their groove with him.  

Before British Summer Time, I shamefully wasn't aware of who Grace Jones was. On leaving the festival, I felt like I knew too much. The Jamaican woman gave us ferocity, constant rhythms, handfuls of costume changes and of course, sweaty nipples; what festival would be complete without them? Grace Jones, 67, I still going, performing her last song naked and hula hooping. Amazing. We were a slave to her rhythm.  

By this stage, anticipation was high in the run up to the reason we were all there; Kylie. The most welcoming Aussie in pop, dressed righteously as a queen. Pride in London is just under a week away, but her homoerotic performances, completed a rather “gay” line up. 

Playing hits, old and new, Kylie wanted a good time and she got it. Saturated in attractive dancers, we just can't get her out of our head.  

British Summer Time continues across Summer. Taylor Swift takes to the stage soon. 

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