Slam Dunk 2019's triumphant debuts


1. Lights commanded the crowd with her spellbinding debut at Slam Dunk 2019.

The Canadian star charmed the pop punk festival with her charisma and powerhouse vocals and, noticeably, the 'Time Is Everything' singer brought an abundance of female energy to the Key Club Stage as the alternative electronic artist drew in a practically 50/50 gender-balanced crowd. 

She may not have been the most obvious act on the line-up – commenting during her performance that she is “probably not the heaviest act performing at Slam Dunk” – but it didn’t show in the turn out for her set. 

The alt-pop star managed to pull a crowd for her first Slam Dunk appearance, while veterans New Found Glory were playing the festival’s main stage at the same time. 

The crowd was treated to a combination of songs from 2017s 'Skin&Earth', as well as older songs, her latest single ‘Lost Girls’ and a mesmerising cover of Cher’s ‘Believe’, which couldn't be more far removed from Slam Dunk if it tried, but went down a treat.

On the benefits of being an artist that is loved by fans of all different genres of music, Lights told us: "I get to have my fingers in so many different genres. 

"My music doesn’t exactly fit in with Slam Dunk, but I get to be here and that’s pretty dope. 

"I can go play at an EDM festival, and at an Indie Rock festival. I don’t fit in anywhere but I can do them all. I’m really lucky to have that opportunity."

2. Mainstream pop punk veterans Busted popped their Slam Dunk cherry with a surprise slot on the Key Club Stage.

The Essex three-piece - comprised of Charlie Simpson, Matt Willis and James Bourne - looked like boys living out their teenage dreams with huge smiles on their faces as they gave the packed out tent major throwback vibes with their old-school hits dominating the setlist - comprised of smash hits 'Air Hostess', 'What I Go to School For', '3am', 'Crashed the Wedding', 'Year 3000', plus two tracks from their comeback album 'Half Way There', 'Shipwrecked in Atlantis' and 'Reunion'.

Press to Meco meet Lizzie's Lowdown

3. Alt-rockers Press to Meco not only made their debut at the festival, but they were lucky to have Busted as their warm-up.

There was no time to be nervous, as the trio timed their entrance for seconds after they played the final notes of 'Year 3000'.

Drummer-and-vocalist Lewis Williams told us after their set: "We played right after Busted, which was cool setting up with them there just rocking out some good tunes. 

"We felt like we were archers at a medieval battle because the stage manager was

like, ‘HOLD! HOLD! GO!’, and then we counted in our first song just as they finished their last."

All Time Low

4. All Time Low instantly lived up to their promise to honour their third studio album, 'Nothing Personal', which turned 10 this year, jumping straight into 'Dammed If I Do Ya (Dammed If I Don't)'.

But festival-goers were also treated to the live debut of new song, 'Getaway Green', which proved an instant hit with the raucous crowd. 

Alex Gaskarth and co drew the festival to an epic close with pop punk classic 'Dear Maria, Count Me In' and gave one last injection of energy, leaving their audience on a high as Slam Dunk 2019 went out with a bang.

Slam Dunk @ Hatfield House Park

Words: Eline Joling, Emma Sherar and Lizzie Baker