That Time At Relentless NASS

There’s one UK Festival that I feel doesn’t get the love that it should from the festival crowd…

Now granted it’s not on the same level of the major festivals of Reading/Leeds, Glastonbury or V, but then it’s not trying to be, as this three day fiesta of fun has it’s own niche. Tucked away in Shepton Mallet’s Royal Bath & West Showground every July is the Relentless NASS festival – or National Action Sports Show if you’re not a fan of abbreviations!

Catering to the more extreme-sports oriented, NASS is three days of BMX, motocross, mountain biking, skateboarding, inline skating, shopping, partying, live music, camping and drinking! What more could you need for an awesome weekend?! Just don’t plan on the weather being up to scratch anymore of course…

Blue skies over the Braun mini-ramp from summers past…

As a former mountain biker, and with the majority of my group of friends being BMXers this was always going to right up our street. I consider myself a NASS veteran now with 4 festivals under my belt, but my buddies Lee and Toby are practically NASS relics now, having first attended in 2002! Those guys are the main reason why pretty much all of our crowd began attending, and whilst I haven’t been able to make the last two years due to a) work and b) being the other side of the planet, there’s always been a pretty epic crowd of ours attending from North Devon.

So why do we keep coming back? As mentioned above, if you’re into small bicycles (or slightly bigger ones with gears!), or planks of wood on four wheels you’ll have a whale of a time with the displays set over the weekend, be it on mini-ramps, spine ramps, vert ramps, flatland areas or in each year’s specially created pro street course (which is also open to the public at certain times, just don’t expect it to be quiet!). Dirt aficionados will also find themselves catered to with BMX and MTB displays over the weekend. Additionally, even if – like me – you’re not a fan of motocross you should still make the effort to check out the freestyle MX displays to be wowed by the height and tricks these guys pull off. As for micro-scooters, well I’m just pretending they don’t exist…

Got wood…?

NASS shopping also tends to be a bit of a treasure trove should you be looking for new bike/skate parts, t-shirts, sneakers and any other types of various clothing you can think of from your favourite surf/skate/snow brands. Whilst clothing wise you might be more in luck should you be of a larger size than my skinny self, you can find some real one-offs when it comes to equipment. I mean I think I spent most of my time at NASS 2005 drooling over a limited edition black and gold DMR frame…

So many potential purchases for Lee…

Of course no festival is complete without live music. NASS has really upped it’s game from it’s early years, and whilst I was lucky enough to see some ace UK bands in A and Reuben in my first NASS in 2005, bigger and bigger names have been appearing ever since. In my other visits to NASS I’ve been stoked to see The Subways, Pendulum, Less Than Jake, N.E.R.D and CKY amongst others, and I’ve since missed Bowling For Soup, Millencolin, Tinie Tempah, Labrinth, Chase & Status, Plan B and Maverick Sabre. Whilst the more hip-hop and D&B oriented acts may not be to my tastes in particular, NASS has got something to tickle every musical taste-bud these days. Add the live stages to silent discos and dance halls and you should have all your party bases covered. Just don’t try going in the pit with cracked ribs like I did!

Jungle IS massive… (Yes it’s poor – it’s from my old phone)

As with any festival though, a big part of the fun is always the people you camp with and the people you meet. I’ve always been lucky to be part of a great crowd, and funny stories are always gonna be born when you mix a festival, friends and alcohol. Whether it’s the yearly festival-wide shouts of “b***ocks”, filling Dunc’s tent with raw sausages while he slept, mud-pit mosh-pits, making Dunc’s tent into a ball-pool (we love him really!), Tiny’s general funny drunkenness, the “Adam Sucks Wang” t-shirt or many more that I’ve forgotten…

Ahh I miss NASS, and I can’t wait to return in 2013! Check it out!

Have you ever been to NASS? Love it as much as I do?


Have your say...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s