Glastonbury 2005

Posted on Tue 28 June 2005 in general

I got home at 1.30 this morning and after a quick bit of cleaning the kitchen and a nice warm cup of hot coco later I was watched a little of the BBC 3 coverage before realising they must of been at an entirely different festival.

So my thoughts, before they boil down into the homogenous "experience" that Glasto memories usually become. First of the bat is my appreciation of the Camper Van approach to camping. The downside of being outside the festival proper and having to walk in was totally compensated for by not having to carry loads of kit (twice), providing a warm shelter from which to watch the 5 hour thunderstorm and a bed I could actually sleep in. Despite the on-board shower providing a mere dribble of warm water it still felt like living in the lap of luxury. Some days I even had two showers just to demonstrate how soft I have become ;-)

One thing that this decadent water usage did bring home however was how much we take water for granted. To have a shower camper van style involves getting wet, turning the water off, lathering, and finally turning the water on to rinse yourself down. On average this uses about 15 litres of water. At most I had to queue about 15 minutes for the tap and carry the 25 litre container 100 yards. There are plenty of people in the world that have it so much harder. It certainly made me think.

So as far as band are concerned who did I see?

Friday was a relatively light day which started of with The Zutons who I enjoyed. I caught the tail end of Royksopp which was quite chilled although slightly tempered by the field of mud I was standing in. I shall probably try and catch them again at an indoor venue some time. I finished off Friday night with Fat Boy Slim. Its a bit tricky for someone who is essentially a DJ to do a live set but he managed well. Compared to the last time I saw him when he was playing a DJ set this was all his own stuff (with occasional mash-up mixes). The visuals where fantastic and included a rather funky pair of holographic specs which literally altered your perception of the stage. I have a feeling Mr Slim has "indulged" once or twice ;-)

Saturday saw me catching a full set from KT Tunstall which was very good. I'm certainly looking forward to her next album. I spent the rest of the day wondering around the Theatre and Circus fields where I saw the very funny and entertaining Jason Webley. He had us hooked from the point he got the audience to shout "Arrrgh" like pirates. After that I got roped in by the funky reggae of Berlin based Seeed at Jazz stage. I'd never heard of them before but certainly worth dancing in a field to.

By the Sunday the site was getting a lot more navigable so I wandered over to the main Pyramid stage to sit in the sun whilst listening to Jools Holland. I caught the first part of Van Morrison's set before wandering of to explore some more. I did catch a little Tori Amos but was put off by how busy the Acoustic tent field was (she obviously has a lot of loyal fans). I returned for the final act, The Beautiful South who just played hit after hit. A very nice way to wrap up the weekend :-)

But to be honest the music is a very minor part of the festival experience. Sure I'd gone though the timetable and selected acts that I "planned" on seeing. However schedules and Glastonbury don't really mix. Your much better off just wondering around and seeing what you bump into, be it random bands, circus performers, or just fellow Glasontites. I'm glad that the Glasto Virgins we brought along this year all said they had enjoyed themselves. When you look at the initial list of bands, the ticket price and the hassle of being organised enough to buy the tickets in the small window of time I can see why some people are put of the idea. However if you want to join us in 2 years time (next year is a fallow year for the site) then ask someone who went for the first time this year what they thought of it.

Phew!