Deer Shed Festival 8

An awesome family festival that I’d recommend to anyone. Loads to do, great music, great atmosphere and great company.

This is the third year in a row that we’ve been to the Deer Shed Festival and we’ll be going again next year.  Amy nudged us all in the direction of this “family friendly” festival back in 2015 and it’s now a permanent fixture on the calendar.


DS6 & DS7 were superb and this probably topped them both.  The line-up isn’t packed with household names, but it’s fair to say that for me the music is a bonus as there is so much else to do there.  The website notes this as a family friendly festival and it most certainly is.  There’s so much to do and explore that every year we reflect on how much we missed.  The organisers do a fantastic job of making sure there is something for everyone and it would be fair to say that the kids activities are for the big kids too!

This year our kids did the following activities; fashioned a bow and arrow in the wilderwild, created “arty stuff” (screen print & designed bunny kids), did a forensic investigation, slack lining in the sports field, fairground rides, made paper airplanes and a paper dodecahedron…

You literally could spend all day in the sports field, science tent and wilderwild, but then there’s music across 4 main stages on top of that.

Deer Shed 8

Present at this one: Clare & I with Lana & Erin, Set & Amy with James & Ewan and Andrew with Mayu and Shumei.  The kids are aged from 4 to 9, but there’s something for everyone of any age.


Food: the food is always great.  There’s a broad range of foods available from a variety of cultures.  I had Mac n Cheese, Red Thai Curry & an awesome steak & ale pie & mash.

Beer: probably the one frustrating thing about DSF is that you aren’t allowed to take any alcohol into the arena.  I know that’s standard at most festivals, but I’ve been spoiled at Glastonbury.  Nevertheless, that’s a minor complaint and the beer on offer is great.  Unfortunately I didn’t get as far as the Obelisk bar which had around 30 ales available.  I stuck with the main bar and enjoyed a few pints of the excellent Mary Jane and the specially brewed Wilderwild.


Music: as always we created and shared a spotify playlist in advance.  I hadn’t heard of many of the bands in advance and so have now picked up a number of new favourite bands / artists.  I was looking forward to Teenage Fanclub anyway, but most of the others were pretty new to me and in fact many of the ones I did know were just because of previous DSFs.  Unfortunately I didn’t get to see anyone on either the In The Dock or the Obelisk stages, but that’s the perils of having a family!


Happyness turned out to be the first band I caught on Friday.  I was familiar with a couple of tunes from the playlist and the played to a crowd that was beginning to build as the day wore on.


Honeyblood were the main support on the main stage.  They’ve got some great tunes and have a good stage presence.  They can certainly make some noise!

I then caught a bit of Jesca Hoop on the Lodge Stage before the main headliners.


Teenage Fanclub were awesome,  I saw them back in November and they were equally good tonight.  It was a career spanning set with a focus on their latest album, Here (4 out of the 16 tracks were from this one).  The tracks from my favourite two TF albums were my highlights (Grand Prix & Songs From Northern Britain), but it was all good.  Shame there was no encore, but it was still a treat.

Teenage Fanclub Setlist Deer Shed Festival 2017 2017



Two all female groups kicked off the music on Saturday.  The Big Moon were in fine voice and She Drew The Gun started the poetry theme that spanned to the headline slot.  I enjoyed both and will certainly be following The Big Moon in the future.

Sandwiched in the middle, Ste & I managed to catch the second half of the Roddy Woomble set on the Lodge Stage.  It was enjoyable, although I was hoping for a sneaky Idlewild track.  He may have played one and we just missed it.  I plan to check out some of his solo stuff after seeing this.


King Creosote was next (after a fast spin on the Ferris Wheel), followed by Ibibio Sound Machine.  ISM aren’t my thing, but they certainly got the crowd dancing.

We all then went to see John Smith on the Lodge Stage.  He was great.  I hadn’t heard of him before the line-up was announced and I can see myself getting an album before long.  I might have got one that night in the march tent had events not conspired against me.  I had Erin on my shoulders for the last 3 or 4 songs and she was enjoying the sweet sounds.  She was obviously enjoying it so much that she drifted off.  We were all amused as she continued to stay asleep as the set ended and we left the tent.  The heavens then opened…

…as we headed to our base in front of the main stage.  With Erin asleep and clearly struggling, Clare and I decided (as did Andrew and his kids) that we wouldn’t brave Kate Tempest.  Not our thing anyway, but the weather took a turn for the biblical.  We were all saturated by the time we got back to the tent.



The festival has a shortened Sunday and consequently you get a feeling that the weekend has gone very quickly.  You can stay over on Sunday night for an extra £50, but we’ve only done that the once.  We only caught two bands on the final day as we emerged ourselves in the Wilderwild and the sports field.

Teleman were one of my most anticipated new (to me) bands.  They didn’t disappoint.  There’s something joyous about finding a new band that you take to.  It’s an almost certainty that I’ll have bought Brilliant Sanity within the next few months.


The Sunday night headliner was another band that I’ve never really “got”, but you could tell that most of the crowd certainly did.  The Divine Comedy ended proceedings and left us all adding the early bird DS9 ticket sale date to our diaries.

Weather: the weather was variable.  The Friday was pretty awesome, Saturday was pretty patchy and then insane rain.  Sunday was pretty good with the odd showers.  If you come prepared with wellies, then it really doesn’t matter.

Thank you to everyone involved in making this a great festival.  See you next year!


Busted @ Bents Park, South Shields

Busted deliver a gig like no other band I’ve seen this year (or ever?)

We are off to see Busted with the kids next month btw…are you excited? 😂

The above was a text from my wife to me whilst I was at the home of music, Glastonbury.  Clearly I had no say in this. The kids would no doubt be happy.

I got home to discover that this was a free event as part of the South Tyneside Festival.  However, we’d bought priority tickets at £5 a piece! Bargain.

This was a decent event – especially for those that got in free. There were 4 acts on in quick succession, so there was little time to get bored between them.  I gather there was quite a queue when it opened (12 noon for priority ticket holders), but we didn’t arrive until until about 1.30pm and sailed straight through.  The weather was pretty great all afternoon, so that was a bonus.  All the support acts were local.

Sonny: the only local performer to do his own tracks (from what I can remember) until he closed with a medley of covers. He sounded pretty decent and was a nice way to start the day.

Call On Sunday: played covers for the younger audience members. Sounded good.

The Understudies: played covers for the older audience members. I really enjoyed these. Covers included; Franz Ferdinand, ELO, The Beatles, Buggles, AC/DC, Pulp…

Busted: I’m not sure how interested Busted were in this. Charlie Busted’s eyes seemed lifeless behind his shades and they didn’t hang around at the end of their set.  I’m pleased to say I didn’t know as many Busted songs as I feared I might.  The girls seemed to enjoy it, although they were pretty exhausted in the sun after a great morning playing in a football tournament. The definitely enjoyed Year 3000 and a few others. You can see why Busted have some appeal and there were tonnes of people singing.  It’s not music made for me. That’s fine. I was there for the girls and it was good value, even with priority tickets.

For what it’s worth, here’s the setlist (I submitted this, but only thought about it 5 or 6 songs in – so it’s incomplete – and relied heavily on lyric searches on google!)

Elbow @ Tynemouth Priory & Castle

Elbow on top form with another fantastic album to showcase

After missing the “secret” Elbow set at Glastonbury (clash with The xx), I was really looking forward to this one.  The prospect: an outdoor Elbow gig…in the sun…in the grounds of a priory.  What’s not to like?

The weather forecast in the early part of the week looked dodgy with biblical storms prophesied.  As it turned out, this was not the case and the evening went ahead with no rain and a good bit of breakthrough sunshine.

Present at this one were Ste and his wife (Amy) and my wife (Clare), and I.  We went separately, but met up after some food.

Food: I had some amazing fishcakes and chips (Clare went for fish bites and chips) from … outside the venue.  Ste & Amy went for some burgers inside the venue from the Fat Hippo van.

Support: The Cornshed Sisters. Not my cup of tea, but a pleasant, gentle and melodic introduction to the evening.  For a brief period we speculated whether the set would be adorned with corn-on-the-cob related props, but alas, this was not the case.

Venue: the grounds of Tynemouth Castle & Priory were an amazing setting for the gig. The stage essentially seemed like it was on the edge of a cliff with the fret stymied sea view providing the incredible back drop.  This gig was one of a series of 4 days making up the Mouth of Tyne Festival.  Tickets for each day were separate.  Elbow were up first.
The one slightly odd aspect to this being a “festival” was the resulting atmosphere.  A significant proportion of the crowd had brought chairs, picnic rugs and other accompaniments, despite the fact that the doors didn’t open until 6pm.  It really felt like people were setting themselves up for a full day, rather than a 3 hour gig.  Not to worry, though, as this enabled us to get a spot very near the front (after navigating ourselves through the various picnic related obstacles).

What were Elbow like?
Awesome. Review complete.

Elbow really have found themselves a home in the heart of the British public.  An everyman lead singer who is as at home downing a pint of guiness (although this was done by Pete on the night) as he is getting the audience repeatedly chant “LOVE”.  I’m certain that this forms part of most Elbow reviews, but Guy Garvey is, without a doubt, the musician I would most like to go for a pint with.

Elbow opened with the classic Any Day Now, starting what turned out to be a good career spanning set with at least 1 song off every studio album (1 from each of; Asleep In The Back, Cast of Thousands & Leaders Of The Free World.  2 from Build A Rocket Boys!, 3 from The Take Off and Landing of Everything, 4 from The Seldom Seen Kid and 5 from the most recent album, Little Fictions).  The set lasted almost exactly 2 hours and I wasn’t restless once.

Mr Garvey kept the crowd interested throughout leading much arm waving, hand clapping and mantra chanting.  He followed the crowd in baiting Pete Turner to down his pint of Guiness which he gamely did after a couple of attempts. It’s not big and it’s not clever, but it’s always a crowd pleaser!

There were highlights throughout the set and it’s a credit to the new songs that they already feel at home amongst the established tunes.  Magnificent (She Says) and Little Fictions were particular highlights for me from the new album with Sad Captains, Station Approach, Fly Boy Blue / Lunette, The Birds, Lippy Kids and Grounds For Divorce standing out in post-gig analysis.  To be truthful, that list could just be the entire set as they didn’t put a foot wrong.  The gig and new album have inspired me to start an Elbow vinyl collection which I’m sure will grow rapidly.

There wasn’t a huge amount of merch on offer (just a few t’s), so no one partook.

Other entertainment came in the form of the surrounding audience members.  One woman who was clearly in the “picnic spirit” was so drunk she managed to fall over and spill her drink on at least two occasions with seemingly little provocation.  There was also a large amount of low level middle class heckling of Guy’s various on stage musings.  There were definitely a few mutterings about his more left wing call backs with the crowd.

Ste and I were talking about the consistency of Elbow.  7 studio albums into their career and there hasn’t been a bad one.  In fact, I genuinely love them all and feel like they are the sort of band that could continue to produce great albums for another 15-20 years.  I hope they do.  This was the seventh time I’ve seen Elbow live (that puts them 4th on the most often list) and I wish there had been more.  Roll on the next Elbow gig.


Glastonbury 2017 – Saturday – Day Four

Day four, of the best festival in the world, brought 14 quality bands across 7 stages – 24km of walking with one or two beers to keep hydrated.

The Saturday of Glastonbury was pre-identified as an action packed day.  There were a few clashes around, but Ste and I pretty much agreed what we were going to tackle.  The day started with some rain and I couldn’t help but hope the Bootleg Beatles would play a cover of Rain.  I didn’t happen.  Lost opportunity.  We headed out with waterproofs on and made the controversial decision not to bother with chairs.

The Bootleg Beatles with the Pepperland Sinfonia

With a cup of tea in hand we headed for the Pyramid stage.  The Bootleg Beatles were awesome.  Focussing entirely on Sgt Peppers and Magical Mystery Tour era meant a splendid time was guaranteed for all.  Hearing A Day In The Life with an orchestra was pretty special and something I won’t forget in a hurry.  Paul’s patter was perfect, although his look and singing voice isn’t quite there.  John was pretty much spot on.  A top start to the day which also ended as the rain ended.



Our first and only trip to the Acoustic Stage.  We arrived early to hear the sweet sounds of Joseph.  White Flag has become my youngest daughters favourite tune and I can’t stop watching the version they did on Jools Holland.  We oddly caught the soundcheck which drifted into the main set.  I didn’t know everything, but being on the front row meant it was a pretty intimate and special performance.  I’ll no doubt invest in the latest album soon.

Wildwood Kin

Keeping with the all girl band theme we sped to the Avalon Stage for the first and only time.  We caught Wildwood Kin syupporting The Oh Hellos last year and were pretty impressed,  I love a band who really look like they are enjoying themselves on stage.  We missed the first song, but the rest of the set was sumptuous.  They noted that they had previously been reviewed as being “pleasantly awkward” on stage.  There’s something really apt about that description.  Their new album is out in August and I’ll certainly be making a purchase.


British Sea Power

It’s a little bit of a cheat to say we saw BSP.  We wanted to, but also wanted to cram in other bands.  We saw the end of one song on the way round one side of The Other Stage and then caught Keep On Trying (Sechs Freunde) on the way past the other side.


The Amazons

We specifically trekked to the John Peel Stage to see these.  We hadn’t been able to make up our minds in advance over whether this was a band for us or not.  I think our collective conclusion was “not”.  We probably only stayed for 2 or 3 songs, but had time to sneak in two puns.  Ste noted that “they never fail to deliver” while I acknowledge that we didn’t have a prime spot.


Wild Beasts

We left The Amazons and headed back to The Other Stage to see Wild Beasts.  We arrived during track one, but were quickly able to get to the front.  They gave a good performance.  I don’t have an extensive knowledge of their stuff, but there was a couple in front who literally song along to every word.  I’m always amazed how there are always superfans for every band.  We headed back to the tent after this one to deposit the waterproofs and replenish the beers.

Kaiser Chiefs

This was a band we almost couldn’t be bothered for.  KT Tunstall was playing the acoustic tent.  We’d have both preferred that, but couldn’t bring ourselves to trek from the tent to the Acoustic Stage (probably the longest possible journey).  Instead we trudged to watch the Kaisers (after debating whether to skip them and just head to the Park Stage for Temples).  They were fine.  Nothing more, nothing less.  It seemed like Ricky Wilson had snorted a couple of lines of coke before he came on stage as he was a little wired and very up for it.  I Predict A Riot was the inevitable highlight.


Liam Gallagher

Following KC was the big man himself, LG as you were.  The last time Ste or I saw this man live was at Glastonbury in 2004.  Oasis were terrible that night and Liam’s voice really hasn’t been the same for well over a decade.  He opened with Rock n Roll Star and transitioned into Morning Glory.  He then mentioned new songs, so we headed on our merry way.  The crowd was truly huge.  Watching back on TV, I don’t feel we missed anything, but the closing Don’t Look Back In Anger was pretty special.



A quick March to The Park stage for Temples.  Nothing stands out about this set.  It was good, but wasn’t special or memorable.  In fact we had a sit down for the last few songs (a much needed sit down!).

The Avalanches

This was a wildcard.  Our first EVER trip to the West Holts stage.  What a strange trip it was.  It felt like a party stage.  No one seems inserted in the band, but everyone was drinking.  You couldn’t get anywhere near the from (or at least we couldn’t spy a route), so we watched from a distance.  Despite the big screens being available and functional, they were not utilised.  Instead you had to try and pick out people on stage from a distance.  We decided after a couple of tracks that this wasn’t for us.  We probably should have delayed the decision for 5 more minutes as Frontier Psychiatrist started playing as we were well on our way to the Pyramid.


The National

Pretty much caught the whole of this set.  I don’t remember a lot about it.  I don’t remember being particularly drunk, but memories of this and Father John are certainly Misty.  The National were good, if not sparkling.  I’m pretty certain Ste enjoyed them a little more than me, but they were certainly good.


Father John Misty

FJM is a bit of an enigma.  This was a good set, but he is a strange dude.  We had a poor view, but the screens are decent in The John Peel tent.  Everything that he played from I Love You, Honeybear (the album) was fantastic.  His more pop tendencies have more appeal for me.


∆ alt-j

The Foo Fighters were headlining the Pyramid.  This wasn’t a difficult decision for Ste or I.  Neither of us owns a Foos album and ∆ are one of the best bands in recent times.  We arrived nice an early for this one and got pretty close to the front.  The Foos clearly had the lions share of patrons, but this was a pretty iconic performance to be at.  The set was little more than an hour,  but I’m pretty certain they played everything you’d want to hear at a festival set.  They were pretty static for the whole performance and didn’t talk much.  That said, despite a lack of engagement through that medium, the songs spoke for themselves.  I was mesmerised as was everyone around me.  Matilda stood out as a particular highlight, but I don’t think there was a low point.  I wasn’t restless for a second.  If i was a Kraftwerk fan (own one album that I’ve never got into) then this is probably what watching them would have felt like.  Compelling viewing.


The Park usually ends last (although not on Sunday) and when you don’t want the night to end, its worth a hike.  I’ve never fully got into Warpaint, but they have some fantastic tunes.  I think we caught that last 4 or 5 songs.  New Song was fantastic and made me wish I’d seen more.


The highlights of day four, for me, were alt-j, Joseph, Wildwood Kin and Warpaint.  We walked 24km on the Saturday, purposely seeing 14 bands across 7 different stages.  Our most impressive glastonbury haul ever.  It even included some downtime between Wild Beasts and Kaiser Chiefs!

The Bootleg Beatles Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

Joseph Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

Wildwood Kin Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

The Amazons Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017, Summer 2017

Wild Beasts Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

Kaiser Chiefs Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

Liam Gallagher Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017, As You Were

Temples Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017, Volcano

The National Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017, Sleep Well Beast

Father John Misty Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017, Pure Comedy

alt-J Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017, RELAXER Tour

Warpaint Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

Glastonbury 2017 – Friday – Day Three

Glastonbury Friday. A great day for music. Some outstanding performances on offer.

The pace immediately builds on day 3.  Friday arrives and from that point on there’s barely a break from the music.  The day started with a cup of tea and the opening act of The Other Stage.  The Pretenders were up first.  They started slow with tracks off their new album, but soon played some crowd pleasers.  Not my type of band.  A satisfactory, if not impressive start to the festival.  It soon improved.


We headed to the John Peel Stage next.  We’d just discovered Rews on the playlist and thoroughly enjoyed their set (missed the first few tracks).  Black Honey immediately followed.  They also sounded good, but we only caught a few tracks before we needed to head off.

The scheduling at Glastonbury can be a personal challenge.  You need to work out who you want to see in their entirety and prioritise accordingly.  Blossoms were one of those priorities, so it was our first trip to The Pyramid Stage.  They were really good without ever really sparkling.  I feel like they are holding back a little at times, but I’ll be really interested to see how they develop on album number 2.

The sweet sounds of First Aid Kit followed.  This is a band that always sound amazing.  They didn’t disappoint.  Oddly, Ste and I had been rubbishing the song, You Are The Problem Here, in advance, but this was a great part of the set.  A trip back to the Other Stage followed.

Glass Animals were up next.  We were eating a square pie for a few songs of this set and never really got involved.  It was decent without ever engaging me significantly.  They did trow some awesome inflatable pineapples into the crowd though which is something.

Back to The Pyramid Stage for three of our most anticipated sets.

Royal Blood took to the stage and were immediately impressive.  Those two produce such an awesome noise.  So powerful, catchy and engaging.  The two of them seem to have a great stage presence.  Their second album had juts got to number one and they celebrated by cracking open a massive bottle of champagne on stage and guzzling it all in front the huge crowd.  Class.


The xx were next.  This set seemed to go quickly.  This may have had something to do with alcohol which had been a steady intake since 12ish.  The xx sounded great and seemed to have a set full of familiar tunes, despite the fact that I’ve only properly got into them since the most recent album.  Elbow were playing a secret set of the park stage and in previous years we’d have headed there, but given how many times I’ve seen Elbow, I’m glad we stuck with The xx.

An so for the first headliner.  Radiohead.  We hadn’t seen Radiohead live since 2003, so were really looking forward to this, especially in anticipation of an OK Computer heavy set.  Unfortunately its was a bit of a led down (no pun intended).  Despite featuring 6 OK Computer tracks and a tonne of other great tunes, it lacked some emotional connection.  We thought a significant problem was the stupid use of the big screens.  There was rarely a standard image displayed and instead you had to watch an arty collage of nonsense.  We were to far from the stage to see what was going on directly and could really only see the silhouette of an unmoving security guy on stage.  Consequently there was no connection.  This had a significant impact.  Don’t get me wrong.  It was good.  Just not great.  OKNOTOK I guess.

The night didn’t quite end there.  Just enough time for a lengthy dash to The Park (first visit) to catch the embers of The Flaming Lips set.  I think we caught 4 tracks.  All were good and seemed very entertaining.  A pleasant coda to the first full day of music.

Unfortunately, post Lips, we got caught in a massive crush outside of the park area.  If we did have any plans to continue on to anything else (we probably didn’t), then they were swiftly brought to a close be being sent in opposite directions.  We met back up at the tent.  Day three done.

On Friday 23rd June we walked 15.25km and saw 10 bands across 4 stages.  Highlights were First Aid Kit, Royal Blood and The xx.

The Pretenders Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017, Alone

REWS Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

Black Honey Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

Blossoms Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017, Blossoms

First Aid Kit Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

Glass Animals Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

Royal Blood Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017, How Did We Get So Dark?

The xx Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017, I See You

Radiohead Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017, A Moon Shaped Pool

The Flaming Lips Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017, 2017 Summer Tour


Glastonbury 2017 – Thursday – Day Two

AKA the day the music begins.  Glastonbury is about a lot of things.  Peace, love & harmony, to name but a few.  You can do all sorts at the festival and can have all sorts of different experiences, meeting people form all walks of life.  Ste & I keep to ourselves and see as much music as possible.  It’s not that the other stuff isn’t fun or interesting, it’s just that the music is why we are there.  We don’t spend ours honing a spotify playlist to ensure we have a quality itinerary, just to watch a man run naked around a stone circle, or watch a woman on stilts juggle with flame throwers, or listen to a debate.  We go for the music and try and consume as much of it as possible.  We did well this year and made sure we started as early as possible.  This meant the Thursday resulted in some exploring of the site until around 4.30pm (including 2 hours stood by the march stall drinking beer) when we began to get hungry for live music.  We made our way to Strummerville (high on the hills away from the other stages), had a bite to eat and made our way to catch our first band.

DIN @ Strummerville

The glasto musical adventure began at Strummerville on “Miller’s Stage”.  Two members of DIN were performing, although the show was advertised as just Nick Grimes (the lead singer).  They were decent enough and an entertaining way to kick off the music.  A trip to the William’s Green followed for the rest of the day.

William’s Green

In 2015 we heard Drenge and Wolf Alice from outside the WG, but couldn’t have got in if we tried.  This year it was all but confirmed that Circa Waves and Everything Everything were due to play “secret” sets, so we decided to get there early and claim a spot.  There are other stages to watch music on the glasto Thursday, but only the WG has any acts of note.


We’d not heard of this lot before.  The crowd seemed familiar with IMG_9561

them and were singing along as the show progressed.  Set & I were about halfway to the front and got a reasonable view.  They seemed nice and soulful and I enjoyed the set.  Since getting back I haven’t listened to anything of theres, so I can probably guess that this will be my one and only interaction with this group.  It was a decent one.



Pumarosa we the first band of the festival that I was familiar with.  I’d given them a bit of a recent listen and enjoyed some of their tunes.  The show was fine, helped by the fact that we were pretty near the front.  They were a bit arty in terms of songs and performance.  This didn’t seem to get the crowd going and I was fairly unmoved.  It was a performance that I’d describe as promising.  I wasn’t put off listening again in the future and would be interested in catching them again.


Circa Waves

The steady flow of beer that Set and I had been consuming meant that Set split off at this point.  I got right to the front and it took a while for Ste to even get back in the tent.  Watching Circa Waves here, meant that we didn’t have to worry about a performance clash later in the festival.  This is where the music really started for me.  The set was only 7 songs long, but it was awesome.  Heavy pop rock is the best way I can describe Circa Waves.  The debut album was more poppy and the latest album turns the guitars right up.  I really enjoyed this and so did the crowd.

Everything Everything

It was a real treat for EE to play as they weren’t playing at any other point in the festival. Unfortunately it was my turn to be beer affected and as Ste moved forward I found myself outside the tent with little hope (seemingly) of getting back in.  I managed it…just. You can tell from the photos that my view was poor.  Ste will add some better ones later.  EE were great.  They played 3 new tunes and 6 classics.  No Reptiles, Kemosabe and Spring / Sun / Winter / Dread were all great and each one got the crowd involved in fine voice.  A great end to the music on day 2.

Day three is were the festival truly starts for music and there’s no let up from that point on.  It was worth it!

Glastonbury 2017 – Wednesday – Day One

Strictly speaking, this isn’t a gig review, but day 1 is part of the Glastonbury experience and I thought it was easiest to separate it from from the music.

Day 1 did not start well.  Not well at all.

Considering Ste and I feel we have glasto down to a fine art; this day didn’t quite go according to plan.  We have the packing list honed every year with tiny improvements adding to the comfort and experience.  A Spotify playlist is created as soon as the line-up is announced and this is whittled down through scientific analysis according to our tastes.  We then shake it down further when the set times are out so that we have a setlist made up entirely of acts we plan to see including several we won’t have heard of before.

I was due to drive.  On the Tuesday night I checked my tyre pressures and noted one was a bit low.  I checked it again at 8am and it had dropped again.  I went to Kwik Fit which opened at 8.30am.  Ste was due at 9am for us to set off immediately.  I rang Ste and fortunately he was running a little late.  Turns out the tyre had a nail in it.  No tyres available for the car at Kwik Fit.  In fact, no tyres were available in the country to order in.  I could go to the Stockton branch to get it fixed as they had some.  That was only going to delay us further, so Ste took up the driving duties.  We eventually got set off at 10am.  The journey down was pretty good.  Unfortunately I’d used a postcode offered on the glasto website to help us navigate the final part of the journey.  This turned out to be a bit of an error.  It took us a different way and we were essentially blocked off from getting to our usual car park and therefore our “usual” camping spot (we’d gone to the same spot for the last two visits to the festival).  We’d arrived near the site at about 4.30pm and we’re pretty certain we parked up at about 4.45-5pm.

We parked in the same car park I’d used back in 2004 when I’d travelled by myself.  I remembered that, at that time, it had seemed like quite a long way.  My memory wasn’t wrong.  We loaded up both trolleys (an improvement on the previous one) and set on our way.  I knew I was in trouble after 20 minutes when sweat was pouring off me and I was struggling to feel my hands and arms.  Every corner we went around led to another massive stretch with no entrance in sight.  I felt like a complete weakling as I really didn’t see how I could complete the trek.  Ste kindly offered to swap trolleys for a bit and that made things slightly better, but not much!  When we eventually got to the entrance, the ticket process was painless, with no queue and no bag search.  We then discovered that the nearest campsite wasn’t exactly “near”.  It was on the complete opposite side of the festival grounds.  There followed a very sweaty and heated journey across the whole site.  We finally settled beyond the dairy ground in a recently opened field.  The tent was pitched by 7pm and the first cold Dead Pony Club was very welcome.

The rest of the evening was event free.  A relaxing stroll up to the famous Glastonbury hills to catch the last hour (or so) of daylight.  A few more beers were consumed, a very tasty burrito and a relatively early night was had.