On Friday, The Great Escape really kicked into gear, as some of my most anticipated acts were performing. I got up early to collect a fast track (guaranteed entry) pass for Iggy Azalea, then went on to watch several talks on marketing.

I felt I had to attend Where Blogs Fit In, but I was confused by the presence of only one blogger on the debate panel. As he represented a blog which I consider to function more like an editorial site than a typical blog, it’s a shame he was the only spokesperson for us. I understood his points, but my experience has in many cases been the complete opposite, for example their music discovery system depends on what they are fed by PRs and other tastemakers, while I seek out my own new talent to feature. I had to wonder what the point of running a blog is if you don’t make the most of the autonomy you have compared to print media.

I began my evening at Komedia, where Island Records were showcasing some of their new acts. Girl rock duo Deap Vally were first on, and attracted a large crowd. The music was too heavy for my tastes but I love their attitude and style. Next up were Little Green Cars, who I only watched due to being too lazy to move. I wished I had bothered to go elsewhere as it was very dull. However, the third Island act John Newman made up for it, as a surprise highlight of the festival so far. I’ve realised this weekend my no.1 priority with live shows is energy on stage, and John had it in spades. He was a surprisingly fun performer and his new single Love Me Again sounded great.

I then headed to The Warren, which is basically a warehouse with a beer garden which becomes a festival venue each year, this time heavily sponsored by Vevo. I saw Nina Nesbitt, who was very sweet and cute, but her music is a bit too Amy McDonald for 2013. She was followed by the much more 2013-appropriate Iggy Azalea, who put on a very fun show which was a breath of fresh air at a mainly indie festival. She has huge stage presence and a great look, although I did find myself wishing she could sing as well as rap. Completing the trio of pretty pop girls at The Warren was Arlissa. I’m not sure her music and performance style really match, but I enjoyed all her songs and she has good pop star potential.

After stopping by a strange DJ gig at a community centre, I called it a night, but overall I can say it was a good day for pop at The Great Escape. Today I’m hoping to see Rainy Milo, Ella Eyre, Chloe Howl and Chvrches so it should be a very poptastic conclusion to the festival. Follow me on Twitter to keep up with my updates, including photos and videos from the shows.