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Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Festival season

The Arctic Monkeys, Coldplay, Foo Fighters, Beady Eye, My Chemical Romance, Deadmau5, Pendulum, Brandon Flowers, Weezer, Manic Street Preachers, Jimmy Eat World, Chase and Status, All Time Low, White Lies, The View, Jessie J, KT Tunstall, Blondie, Ke$ha, Cast, You Me At Six, Crystal Castles, Ocean Colour Scene, The Saturdays, Eels, Hurts, Bright Eyes, The Streets, The Vaccines, Noah and the Whale, House of Pain, Slam, Imelda May, Josh Wink, Bloody Beetroots Death Crew 77, Miles Kane, Vitalic, Eliza Doolittle, Diplo and Stornoway have all been announced for T in the Park this year and while it's a wide ranging and impressive line up with something that would appeal to everyone I've got to say that I fuckin' hate T in the Park.
Similar to Glastonbury (Another festival I used to love) it has become an event that attracts people who aren't really music fans.
Glastonbury seems to draw the upwardly mobile crowd who slum it for a couple of days to accumulate some cool kudos and simultaneously tick it off on their “Things to do before I'm thirty” list.
Meanwhile T in the Park manages to attracts every waif and stray who fancies a weekend away to get rat arsed/high as a kite, and then drunkenly/spaced ou,t make a tit of themselves and ruin the fun of everyone else around them.
Nothing much wrong with indulging in my opinion, but if you find yourself wandering about and slurring at strangers “I'm gonna schtaaaab yous ya priksh” it's a safe bet that you have seriously over indulged.
It's like the trial of manhood that every young boy from Easterhouse has to brave before they can be classed as a scheme elder.
I clearly remember gazing at the roof of my tent trying to sleep while one group of neds/chavs debated loudly with another group about the merits of what cars to steal.
It was like some retarded competition to be crowned king of the joyriders.
Then there was the chant of eci eci eci, oi oi oi for about an hour or so.
The imaginative ode to ecstacy that must have taken them days to memorise the words to.
That was fun.
Then it was daylight. Fuckin' great eh?
Last year a workmates friend returned to his tent to find his belongings gone and a turd left in the centre of his tent.
I'm sure some will jump to say that's not their experience and good luck to them. May they continue to have a hassle free weekend, but it's not for me.
Every year the papers say that it was a great success and virtually incident free, but who wants to kill the cash cow by being too blatantly honest about it.
Another colleague works for the Red Cross and provides free emergency first aid and health care at festivals, but she has declined to work at T in the Park as she says it is like doing a shift on the front line in a warzone.
Stabbing, slashings, overdoses, drink and drug casualties, rapes and sexual assaults never seem to make it to the headlines just the fun in the sun.
Okay, fun in the sun weather permitting.
It is after all Scotland.
This year, as usual I will hopefully manage to attend the Wickerman festival.
I've been every year except for one and in general it has been chilled out and hassle free. There was a couple of years when the music started to lean dangerously close to being heavily weighted to attracting the dance music crowd, but the balance was back last year with a great eclectic bill.
It actually reminds me of the early years when I first started attending Glastonbury.
Another one I would recommend, although I have only been the once, is the Tartan Heart festival, or Belladrum festival if you will.
That's up near Inverness and once again attracts a broad base of music lovers and is pretty much exactly what you would want from a festival.
I had a fantastic time there.
Lovely crowd, eclectic line up and very family friendly.
If I'm unable to get to any of them then I've also been told that the Eden festival is worth checking out. It features most styles, but does seem to be heavy on the Ska/Reggae/Dub ting.
So if you are a festival virgin and think it's time to pop your cherry then I would advise you to check out the smaller ones that haven't lost the real festival spirit just yet and give the big boys a miss, as all they will likely do is turn you off from every attending one again.
Although you can ignore that if what you are looking for is sort of like a stag/hen night in a muddy field with the cast of trainspotting.
If that is your thing then I would actually recommend T in the Park.


  1. Mainstream music festivals in the UK are a joke. Overpriced and full of the same bland acts year in year out. This is why i always go over to Mainland Europe. For the same amount of money i would spend here i can travel over to France for Hellfest and have an awesome relaxed time with no idiots to deal with and watch an eclectic bill of bands.

  2. I keep seeing line ups of Euro festivals and think I could do with some of that, but then again I would need a passport and that would mean divulging info to the man.

  3. Do people really go and see the bands??, a majority of the punters that go are usually the kid you usually see at the arches, eg stoned up to the eyeballs. Yes ive been a few times and stopped going due to that, the trouble you see at TITP is just beyond a joke, and your lucky if people are sober enough to last the whole day and to catch the headlining acts. Yes i prefer more diverse festivals such as Wickerman and Hellfest, Bloodstock etc, good people, good chat and no hassle!