Steps away from the Lincoln Memorial, the Reflecting pool, and other D.C. markers lay Landmark Music Festival, a first-time festival positioned right in the heart of the country’s capital. For a first year-festival, C3 Producers promptly adjusted to any hurdles met throughout the weekend., although over all things went pretty smoothly. There were no defining setbacks and with the affirmative opinions from attendees, it’s safe to say Landmark makes the cut.
The weather remained mostly cloudy during the performances, with only slight rain on Saturday before Drake’s set. Drake did his usual “This is the best crowd I’ve ever seen,” spiel but his performance steadied his clichéd claims. Filled with pyrotechnics, fireworks, and songs representing his entire career, Drake delivered as a headliner. The Strokes closed out the festival playing songs such as “Reptilia,” “Last Nite,” and “Someday.” The vast majority of artists performed for an entire hour. Even lesser known acts performed for 50 minutes, giving fans generous time to get to their next act and a chance to let small artists really showcase their sound. Only on the north side of the festival was there a tiny bit of bleeding when two performances were happening simultaneously. Crowds didn’t seem to mind—they kept occupied with the array of good eats the festival offered, including some of the local favorites like Ben’s Chili Bowl, Toki Underground, and Curley’s BBQ.
The grounds were easy to navigate and to my surprise clean, thanks to the festivals’ program entitled “Rock & Recycle.” The program urged action from the crowd rewarding each recycling attendee a full recycling bag and a festival t-shirt. You could see people picking up cans and trash along the water and grounds.
The crowd size would have been to Goldilocks’s delight. For various artists you could get to the front easily if you got there only five or ten minutes prior to showtime, leaving the “Excuse me’s and I’m sorry’s at the door. Access in, out, and around the festival was swift, mostly because the bracelet system had a three-time reentry policy. The festival figured that since the surrounding area was just so darn…historical that festival-goers would want access to go in and out. You could literally hang out on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in between sets. The bracelets also offered an “as cash” system that allowed fans to link their credit card to their bracelet so they could use it as cash.
Favorite sets of the weekend included Chromeo, Wale, Miguel, and CHVRCHES. This was one of CHVRCHES’s first performances since the release of Every Eye Open. Chromeo kept the crowd entertained with David Macklovitch coming down to fan-level several times. 80s funk, which makes up a major part of Chromeo’s DNA was alive and well that Sunday afternoon.
In between sets, groups of people lounged along the Potomac River all while raising money for the National Mall, one of the most iconic locations in the United States. Bathroom and beer lines were scary long on Saturday, but by Sunday all the kinks had been worked out, possibly due to the thinner crowd. Overall, CHVRCHES and Drake made for a memorable inaugural edition of the DC fest.
Checkout Landmark’s Official Saturday Recap video
Senior Staff Writer