The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Slam Dunk 2024 – South

Another Slam Dunk is in the bag! Our third year in a row attending the South edition (fourth overall as we did the North in 2021) and another thoroughly enjoyable experience. Especially following the immense number of issues that the festival and its attendees experienced in 2023.

Something the organisers appear to have learned from, as the improvements to the site were noticeable and appreciated this year. We have some complaints, but overall, this article is going to be heavily weighted to the many good things to say about our Slam Dunk experience this year. This is the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly of Slam Dunk 2024 – South.

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The Good

Learning Lessons

Let’s start by giving props to the organisers who certainly seemed to take the criticisms of 2023’s event and made a lot of improvements. Well done them. The extra staff working around the place was noticeable, there were no obvious chokepoints, food and drink was plentiful and well placed around the site, there were plenty of toilets, and the whole place just felt safe.

Though we didn’t drive and park there, feedback we have seen suggests that was much improved too. We can all be quick to criticise so this time, let’s give credit where it is due. We asked, they listened and delivered.

Stage Sound

Absolutely no complaints here. From every position, every band sounded great, and the lack of stage bleed over was impressive. Especially considered how close the Key Club and Monster Energy Stages were.

The Bands – In Particular, Those That Surprised

This year’s line-up was the weakest it’s ever been for us, which meant there were very few to be excited about. That being said, there were highlights, some expected – Funeral for A Friend, Guilt Trip and The Interrupters, others unexpected – The Ghost Inside. The latter, we decided to see on a whim as we didn’t have anyone to see elsewhere, and came away very impressed, they were excellent.

The Bar Staff

We drank a lot – probably too much, and spent plenty of time at the bars and every single person who served us did so with a smile, a bit of chat and with speed. If their goal was to have a festival full of drunk people, they certainly achieved that.

The Halloumi Wrap – Vegan/Veggie Place

(Carl’s Personal Experience)

First thing eaten, and it was banging, Fresh vegetables and plenty of Halloumi, it filled my grumbling belly early on and at £10, felt worth it.

The Bad

The Line-up

Gawd-damn, that was a rough line-up. We get it though; our bad line-up is another person’s dream line-up. So, take our criticism here with a pinch of salt. We had a great day, probably the best Slam Dunk to date in truth, so the complaint doesn’t have much weight as the positives of a poor personal line-up is a lack of pressure to see everything and rushing from stage to stage. It resulted in a much more relaxed experience, but it would be nice to have a few bands to look forward to. It is no exaggeration to say that there were only around three bands, we as a group, genuinely cared about seeing. Sure, we found others to enjoy along the way, but it would have been nice to have a bit more to look forward to.

Signal & A Useless App

Signal is non-existent in Hatfield Park, still, and while that isn’t the fault of the organisers exactly, what is annoying is the signage for free WiFi in many areas that just weren’t accurate. Despite repeatedly attempting to connect, it never succeeded. In fact, there was never a network available to connect to. It also meant that their app is worthless (again) once you are on site as it doesn’t load. They should save themselves some money by scaling back on an app no-one can use and invest the saving elsewhere.

Stage Signage

One such place they could reinvest that savings would be signage. Especially at stages. With an app that doesn’t load, knowing a band is on a stage called, for example the ‘Go Pro Stage’ is great other than none of the damn stages have signage around them stating if they are the Go Pro stage or not. A small thing, yes, but also really obvious and easily rectified. The only reason we knew what the Key Club Stage was because the backdrop had a bloody key on it.

The Ugly

Going Hard and Heavy Early On

We say this every year and at every festival we go to, but it bears repeating. Following Guilt Trip, and route to the bar up by the Go Pro Stage, we walked by a dude who was f**king gone already. He was asleep standing up. It had just gone 2pm and he was gone. Someone woke up him up as we passed, but that dude’s day was over. Whatever the cause, be careful people, you don’t need to wreck your experience by going hell for leather at the start. Pace yourself, you have all day and night.

Picnic Blankets in Front of Stages

If you’re going to do this, don’t complain when people stand on it. If you want to sit and relax like this, do so, but do it further back. At one stage, in particular, this was excessive and while it was never busy enough for it be a big problem, the drunker aspects of the evening and the diminishing light made it a bit more hazardous for all.


(Brendan’s Personal Experience)

Toilets annoyed me. I get they were better and seemed more plentiful and cleaner and that’s great but, as a dad there with a daughter, the queues for cubicles were still too long. As a male, it’s easy for me. I can just pop to a urinal, but I queued many times with my daughter, 4 or 5 people back in a queue where every person in front of us was male. We get urinals and cubicles, females get cubicles and it doesn’t seem fair. After yet another 25-minute queue, I remember thinking that they should make 75% of these cubicles, female only. We need a piss, urinals are there. My daughter needs to go and has to wait behind 6 blokes needing a dump or who can’t be arsed to walk to the urinals before she can go. That doesn’t seem fair.

What the F**k Happened with Bob Vylan?

From the social media chatter, s**t went down, and it’s hard to know the truth. We’re not going to repeat the accusations or rumours here. We don’t know the details, but something seems to have happened, and that’s ugly business.

Look, overall, we had a fantastic time. For a festival where the line-up was so weak, to have come out having had an absolute blast with minor complaints only is a wonderful thing. Well done, Slam Dunk!


  • Brendan Fisher

    Owner/Editor/Writer/YouTuber - Heavy Metal and reading, two things I have always loved so they are the two areas you will find most of my reviews. Post apocalyptic is my jam and I always have a book on the go and have for decades now. From a metal perspective, age has softened my inadequacies and I now operate with an open mind, loving many bands from many sub genres but having a particular admiration for the UK underground scene. In my other time, when not focused on Dad duties and work, I try to support the craft beer movement by drinking as much of it as I can and you will also find me out on the streets, walking. I love walking, I love exploring new places and snapping nature photos as I go.

  • Carl Fisher

    Owner/Administrator/Editor/Writer/Interviewer/YouTuber - you name it, I do it. I love gaming, horror movies, and all forms of heavy metal and rock. I'm also a Discworld super-fan and love talking all things Terry Pratchett. Do you wanna party? It's party time!