Latitude 2016

Latitude 2016: Emmy The Great

The Hong Kong-born artist hunts for Pokémon from centre stage.

“Let me know if you see Pokémon on stage!” Emma-Lee Moss shouts as she steps out in front of the crowd. “Kids are only out here so they can catch one.” While the audience dazes in the sunlight, Emmy The Great’s dreamlike take on the world around her steadily stirs Latitude into life.

“The good thing about opening a festival is that you get to do all the cultural references first,” the musician laughs. Playing the first songs and cracking the first jokes on the main stage, she rouses the universal sense of festival excitement. If anything, Emmy’s penchant for storytelling is even more fanciful on in the flesh. Transforming the festival field through a wide eyed wonder, her alluring melodies are a blissful compliment to the summer heat.

Witty observations fly along whimsical melodies, and the set ebbs and flows with an unfailing vibrance. ‘Constantly’ sees the sound scale to thunderous proportions, while ‘Swimming Pool’ twinkles so brightly it’s dazzling. “Just gonna see if you recognise this cover,” Emmy grins mid-set, busting into song with a spout of “do, do, do, do,“‘s. “Does anyone recognise it?” she queries. “Anyone?”

“Do take a picture if you see us with a Pokémon on stage,” Emmy reminds between songs. Addictive as the game may be, from the spiralling worry of ‘Social Halo’ through to the sun-dazed dream of set-closer “Swimming Pool”, the performance on stage is the only thing that seems to matter.

“We are honoured to be opening your festival,” Emmy proclaims as her set reaches an end. “You’ve made me so much happier than I’ve been all month. It’s great to be together and celebrating music and chill people.” Inviting the field to hang, watch bands together, and go get falafel, the thrill of a weekend spent enjoying music in the sun fully sets in - and there’s no better way to see it start.

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