REVIEW: ‘Days on Fes,’ Volume 2

Reading Time: 3 minutes

Days on Fes Volume 2- But Why Tho (1)

I’m missing live music festivals. Sure, music has helped bond me to people during the pandemic—specifically BTS’ BANGBANGCON and 2021 Muster Sowoozoo virtual events—but I still miss the physical closeness and emotion that comes from being at a music festival or concert. And while I miss those moments, Days on Fes has given me a chance to revisit my memories of ACL and SXSW. With Days on Fes Volume 2, readers get to see more of music festivals and how different people enjoy them.

Days on Fes Volume 2 is a slice-of-life manga focused on the story of a teenage girl, Kanade, entering the world of music festivals and a college boy, Ritsuru, who is apathetic about everything, except music. While it looked like there was a possible romance brewing at the end of Volume 1, I’m thankful that that isn’t continued into Volume 2. Instead, we get to see a story revolving around a new experience for Kanade: her first overnight festival.

Days on Fes Volume 2 is created, written, and illustrated by Kanato Oka. The series is localized and published in English by Yen Press. This volume features translation by Ajani Oloye and lettering by Alexis Eckerman.

In this volume, Kanade and her best friend Otoha join Gaku, Otoha’s brother, and his friend Ritsuru. While the last volume told two separate stories, bringing them together in the final chapter, Days on Fes Volume 2 is one story, of one event, from the perspective of a group. Set at one of Japan’s largest festivals, Rock On Japan Festival, the group camps, barbecues, and explores. For Kanade and Otoha, it’s all about the merch and the food, meanwhile, Ritsuru and Gaku drink too much while holding down the fort.

To be honest, Days on Fes Volume 2 and the series as a whole is simple. There isn’t any large conflict, the plot isn’t pushed by romance or anything other than an appreciation for music. This series is slice-of-life to a tee. It’s about a day at a festival; it’s about the moments where you hear the perfect song, the preparation to camp out, and even the moments that aren’t so great like waking up in an extremely hot tent.

Additionally, there are constant moments that point out the elements of festivals that detail things that you wouldn’t think about. One of these elements is the inclusion of prices on everything. While it isn’t converted into US dollars, each panel that shows someone buying something or setting up equipment comes with a price tag attached. While it’s a small thing, it highlights just how expensive festivals can be while also serving as a pretty good roadmap for those who are planning their own adventure.

Days on Fes Volume 2 also features moments that readers from every age can identify with. Whether it’s the stun of meeting a celebrity or having too much beer with your best friend and making a fool of yourself or finding new bands you haven’t heard of, there is a little bit for everyone. This is a part of the series’ charm and it works perfectly.

Overall, Days on Fes Volume 2 is more of the same but adds in elements that showcase the differences in festivals and their intricacies. That said, money is brought up multiple times and I wonder how many festivals this group will go to with their limited funds (at least for Kanade, who is still a high schooler). Of course though, this is more a practicality and not a pure critique. In truth, Days on Fes is a great series for those who love music and those looking for a wholesome and simple story.

Days on Fes Volume 2 is available now wherever books are sold.

Days on Fes Volume 2
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TL;DR

Days on Fes Volume 2 is more of the same but adds in elements that showcase the differences in festivals and their intricacies. That said, money is brought up multiple times and I wonder how many festivals this group will go to with their limited funds (at least for Kanade, who is still a high schooler). Of course though, this is more a practicality and not a pure critique. In truth, Days on Fes is a great series for those who love music and those looking for a wholesome and simple story.