Chase Park Festival @ Saltwell Park, Gateshead

The inclusive Chase Park Festival proves a huge success in the blazing summer sunshine


The Chase Park Festival is a one day accessible festival that I’ve now been to twice.  This year it relocated from Chase Park to Saltwell Park, retaining the Chase Park name and brand.  The Saltwell Park site was a perfect enclosed setting in the afternoon and early evening sunshine.

You can read all about this festival on their website.  I can’t recommend it highly enough, especially if you have a family (the kids loved the goodie bags from sponsors; Voyage Care & Honda and the free face painting).  The tickets were an absolute steal at less than £35 for a family of 4 (when we went in 2015 it was an astonishing £10 for a family of 4!).  If you are lucky enough to be a fan of any of the acts playing, then it’s incredible value, but if you aren’t, for that price it’s worth a punt regardless.  Two of the acts playing yesterday are two of my current favourite bands and I was able to reacquaint myself with a band I was a big fan of in the 2000’s.

The accessible aspect of the festival is what makes this unique.  There’s a huge mix of people of different abilities in a superbly organised, inclusive arena.  A second stage (band stand) demonstrated an outstanding array of talents from those who unfortunately don’t get many opportunities like this.

The pace of the music didn’t let up until the final three acts on the main stage.  Until that point, the acts on both stages alternated with barely a pause for breath, so there was no time for restlessness.

We missed the first act (Fiona King) on the second stage.  All (Percy Hedley, White Dove, The Twist) were entertaining, but the final act, The Soundbeam Band, were the pick of them for me, despite some unfortunate power cuts.

Present: I was there with my wife, Clare and our two girls; Lana & Erin.  Andrew was there with his daughter.  My brother, Mike, was there with his wife and two girls.  We set up for the afternoon and enjoyed a picnic in the sun while enjoying the music.

My daughter, Erin, has become a bit of a poster girl for the Festival’s press since we attended in 2015, with the following picture attached to virtually every article that pops up on social media feeds (just search chase park festival on google images and you’ll see):


Drinks: Wylam Brewery provided an excellent bar and I enjoyed several Galatia during the afternoon.  My brother sampled each of their real ale offerings.  The only complaint about the bar was how busy it got after 5pm, but it’s always a tricky balance to know how busy it will be.

The bands…

James Leonard Hewitson opened the main stage with a thoroughly enjoyable set.  This was soon followed by Vito playing some good indie rock.  Alex Francis then slowed things down with a fabulous acoustic chilled out set in the blazing sunshine.  I’ll be adding Alex to my spotify playlist.  Boy Jumps Ship then turned up the volume and our kids went to the front and really enjoyed themselves (Andrew & I went for a bit of a trek to the nearest cashpoint for most of this set).

Cattle & Cane

One of my current favourite bands took the stage at around 5pm.  This is the 4th time I’ve seen them in the last 12 months and they never disappoint.  Both Lana & Erin declared them as their favourite of the day and you can’t fail to see why.  There’s a slight possibility of bias from my kids after we spotted Helen and Joe on site earlier in the day and they were kind enough to do some signings for all of our kids.  They are a band from teesside who deserve more recognition than they get.  The Poacher is always a set highlight for me, but Saviour wasn’t far behind.

Cattle & Cane Setlist Chase Park Festival 2017 2017, Mirrors

Little Comets

I’ve seen Little Comets 3 times now and they seem to be getting better each time.  I think this set just edged it as my favourite on the day.  The band seemed to be really enjoying themselves and that always seems to add something to the show.  There were loads of highlights form this set; Bridge Burn (Lana’s favourite), The Man Who Wrote Thriller, Joanna, A bientot, Dancing Song to name a few.  Another band that deserve more recognition (latest album, Worhead, deserved a higher chart placing than 83), but I’m glad I was introduced to them back in 2015.

Little Comets Setlist Chase Park Festival 2017 2017

The Coral

Headliners on the day were The Coral.  I’ve caught The Coral 5 times now, but most of these were in the early 2000’s.  I became less familiar with their albums after 4th album, Roots & Echoes, but I plan to get reacquainted after this excellent headline slot.  It was really only the middle of the set that I was unfamiliar with, but it was a good career spanning retrospective.  There were some incredible guitar solos on show here, and the crowd were heavily involved on the way to a crowd-pleasing end with Dreaming Of You.


The Coral Setlist Chase Park Festival 2017 2017

If you’ve never been to the Chase Park Festival or have never heard of it, then it would be well worth keeping an eye out for their offering next year (fingers crossed there is one) as it’s sure to be something special.


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!


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 – Sunday – Day Five

The final day at Glastonbury 2017 wasn’t quite as good as the previous two, but it was still rich in quality.

On paper the final day line up didn’t quite sparkle in the same way as Friday and Saturday.  I think the main issue was that the headliner we’d picked wasn’t one that we knew inside out.  In fact, I probably knew less Metronomy tracks than any other that we watched on the Sunday (except October drift).  Ed Sheehan was not an option in case you are wondering.  Galway Girl is one of the worst songs ever recorded.

On the way to the John Peel Stage we had to drift past The Other Stage. This brought to us the truly awful sounds of Slaves. This is clearly a band I will never enjoy, but it is clear that they have an audience. We had two endure two songs on the way and could still hear them from near the JPS.

October Drift

While we watched October Drift the rain absolutely hammered down on the John Peel tent.  Fortunately it didn’t last long and what we caught of OD was pleasant enough without ever tempting a future purchase.


Sundara Karma

Sundara Karma are an interesting live prospect.  Their debut album is really good and they have everything going for them.  This live show didn’t seem to quite match their potential, but it was enjoyable all the same.

Real Estate

Real Estate were relatively new to me prior to Glastonbury. Their music has a definite feel of Teenage Fanclub and as such I was looking forward to them. Craig Potter, off of Elbow fame is clearly a fan as he was watching back stage on the John Peel Stage. The set was good, but I found myself tiring. It seemed long and the numerous instrumental wig outs seemed to go on forever. It will be a while before I can bring myself to listen to them again. Shame, because I was thinking this could be a band for me.

Laura Marling
Laura was the only act that we watched on the Pyramid Stage in the Sunday. For the first time ever, Ste and I were in the from section (sometimes referred to as the mosh pit, but that would not have been accurate for Miss Marling). We were therefore up close and personal for one of the most serene and delicate performances I’ve ever seen on this huge stage.  The crowd were respectful throughout and at times you could have heard a pin drop.  I’ve honestly never experienced an audience around me being so quiet, soaking in every nuance of this special performance. The set drew heavily from new album, Semper Femina, and I’m not too familiar with it. That didn’t matter. This was an amazing display of acoustic bliss.


The last time we saw Haim was at Glastonbury in 2013.  Just about to launch album no. 2 at the time of this performance and they were full of confidence. The three of them seemed genuinely thrilled to be on stage and their enjoyment was infectious. They barely put a foot wrong in a fantastic sunlit set on the other stage.  This was probably my favourite set of the day with Haim’s Sun-soaked Californian anthems perfect for this slot in the festival.

The Sherlocks 

A short sharp and thrilling set from The Sherlocks on the BBC Introducing Stage.  We really had to race from Haim to catch this set, but we were determined to do so. This time next year this lot will be on a bigger stage…possibly quite high up.  The set was great, filled with future anthems. We missed the first song and half of the second, but that didn’t spoil the enjoyment of the rest.

The Courteeners

The Courteeners is a band that have never struck a massive chord with me. We caught these next on The Other Stage and were struck by how many of the crowd knew every track and every word. Not Nineteen Forever got one of the best receptions I’ve ever seen on this stage.  I might need to invest a bit more time in this band in the future.

London Grammar

The John Peel Stage was the venue for the rest of the night.  When we got there, it was packed. The tent was packed, outside the tent was packed and the bar was packed. The Killers may have had something to do with this, but it made for an uncomfortable half an hour or so. We managed to get ourselves a spot in the tent (not far in mind you) for what turned out to be the surprise set of the day. It was another stunning performance that I found mesmerising despite a lack of familiarity with the tunes.  I’ll definitely be buying album 2 at some point as this was bordering on spine tingling. Fortunately for Ste & I, the Ed Sheehan effect took hold halfway through the set, and the crowd thinned out. It made for a more comfortable time, but my photos remained terrible!

Glastonbury 2017 closed for us with Metronomy. Not how I’d have hoped in advance, but it was the best choice we could make. I know some Metronomy songs really well, but my enjoyment of the set suffered from a lack of familiarity. Still, the tracks I knew were superb (The Bay, Love Letters, The Look) and we left reflecting on another superb Glastonbury.

Highlights of the final day of Glastonbury 2017 were all female; Laura Marling, Haim & London Grammar. It may have not looked the best day on paper, but it had at least three outstanding performances and some significant promise for the future (The Sherlocks & Sundara Karma).  We walked 19.6km on this final day.

October Drift Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

Sundara Karma Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017, Youth Is Only Ever Fun in Retrospect

Real Estate Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017, In Mind

Laura Marling Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

HAIM Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

The Sherlocks Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

The Courteeners Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

London Grammar Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017

Metronomy Setlist Glastonbury Festival 2017 2017, Summer '08



Beer: We took 90 cans of Stella 4 with us and 8 cans of Dead Pony Club.  All were consumed.  We also had a few Pyramid Ales, which were nice enough.  We had to settle for a lager on the last day from the bar (sold out of ale), which wasn’t so good.

Food: The food at Glastonbury is usually good.  Yes, there is rubbish available, but if you pick carefully you can eat very well indeed.  We took some bread products and fruit for breakfast, but ate at the stalls for lunch and evening.  The Thai green curry platter from near the pyramid stage is always a highlight.

Glastonbury 2017 in numbers:
38 bands seen 🎸
10 stages 🎪
90 cans of beer 🍻
£238 face value ticket price 🎫
95.45km walked 🚶🏼
1010km travelled by car 🚗

I’m not sure where this Glasto ranks in respect to the other 6 we’ve been to.  It probably wasn’t as good as 2015 which may well have been my favourite, but perhaps this is because it didn’t quite go to plan.  The Monday involved another huge trek across the site with all of our gear in the blazing sun. We got to the car and set off at about 10-10.30. It seems that we lucky. Reports on Twitter on the way home suggested that our car park was gridlocked about 30 minutes later.  I always feel ridiculously tired after Glastonbury and always wish I’d taken the Tuesday off.  I still want to go back for more.  Roll on 2019.

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!