Welcome back to Part 2 of a Diary of a First time Glastonbury Consumer What's that? You haven't read Part 1? Woah there! Read it here And a big thank you to Burak Cingi for providing photography. See his excellent work here Saturday There’s nothing in the entire world that is worse than waking up in a stifling muggy tent, smelling like death left that’s been left in the sun for a week, hungover, blood stream caked with god-knows-what; and it’s only 07:00. In fact it’s probably the god-knows-what that is keeping everybody alive. Hello Saturday! It’s hard to believe in the real world people actually camp for FUN. Glastonbury 2009 A cup of revitalising herbal tea (from actual mugs! Ahhh, home comforts…) from the paradisiacal Tiny Tea Tent later, and The 405 are ready to go. First stop is the Jazz Stage to see a certain white-bearded Aussie, but before that a surprising delight is on offer from Warsaw Village Band. An expansive (we count 7, but double vision maybe impairing our judgment) elective Polish folk band that mix traditional with the modern; the kind of band that half-arsed critics would dub the ‘Polish Arcade Fire’. Perfect music for the mood, the sun blazing down already at 11:30, lazing on the coarse dry grass. But the real reason to be here is for Rolf Harris. The crowd swells ten-fold to see the wobble-boarded-one, he could easily have filled the Pyramid Stage. A surreal introduction sees the MC screaming “Now when I say Rolf, you say Harris… “ “Rolf” “Harris!” Being a fairly small stage, sadly the acoustics don’t travel that well from our vantage point. Though the legend does get the entire crowd singling along to Tie me Kangaroo Down Sport, after demanding the audience gets emotionally involved in the tale. Before the next stage stop, a hammock shop is proved too tempting to pass up; possibly the best decision of the entire festival. Bliss. Taken care by a ‘Hammock Mum’ for 15 minutes, it’s decided that ‘Every mum should be a Hammock mum’. The Other Stage sees Canadian outfit Metric shine with a scintillating sun-drenched set, playing a smattering of hits from their now growing back catalogue, as well as from new album Fantasies. Lead vocalists Emily Haines shows what a class act she is live. Glastonbury 2009 Our 2nd ‘Act for comedy value’ for today is on the Pyramid Stage in the form of national institution Spinal Tap. Much of the highlight is of course in the banter between songs, though the songs themselves actually work; a place where many ‘comedy acts’ fall down. A mini-recreation of the Stonehenge scene provokes belly-laughter, and Big Bottom has a surprise appearance on bass from Jarvis Cocker. Continuing on the Pyramid Stage is Dizzee Rascal, pleasant not to have to move (apart from trips to the Cider Bus) in the heat. Now Mr Rascal I’ll happily admit I’ve never been familiarised with; not that I disliked him, just ignorant of his work - skipped my musical radar. I really wished I had tuned that radar earlier, as he puts on a fantastic show. Oozing exuberance, he provides so much zest and emphatic happiness it would take a man with a heart of stone not to take to him. The set is kicked off with a rocking cover of That’s Not My Name, in which we do learn his name is Dizzee Rascal. Many times. A mini-tribute to Jacko is created, slightly disappointing in that he just plays the start of a few tracks from Thriller in a row and does little with them, but the thought is there. That aside, a new fan is won over, and many more judging from the reception. Bonkers is just ecumenical Dizzee Rascal An extended break is required, preparing for an ensuing 2nd wind in time for the evenings festivities, as yet more sights are taken in (and yes cider too, is that getting old?). Kasabian’s set is caught from afar, and possibly due to this, they seem distinctly ploddingly average. It may have been a completely different story from the front, but a large difference is quality is noticed between their decade-defining debut album and latest effort. Now… it’s Boss time. For a man of some 127 years old, Bruce Springsteen posses the energy, drive and passion of someone at least four times younger. In fact, more so – contrasting to his performance to Kasabian directly before highlights this. Anthemic stadium rock has never been so awe-inspiring. The set of over two-hours never felt overly-long, even though the first 75-odd minutes most of the material played was stuff that the majority of the crowd were not familiar with; yet still remains captivating. Bruce Springsteen He gurned. He threw himself into the crowd. He stole their signs. He even had a couple of preacher-eqsue rants ‘We’re gonna build a houuuse of sex, gonna build a houuuuse of unity!”. He... rocked. And for the last third, the hits rolled in. And kept coming. And kept coming some more. Glory Days was beyond superlatives, with Born To Run threatening to destroy tens of thousands of larynxes. The E Street Band backed all this up, ‘Sylvio’ from the Sopranos (fact of the day) on guitar proving what a talented fucker he is. The only hit not played being Born in the USA, but this mattered little. Dancing in the Dark was a beautiful finish to Saturday, as the audience glowed on the way back to wherever they might be going into the night. Sunday Well, here you might as well just copy and paste the opening paragraph from Saturday – Muggy tent, smelling like death, head throbbing etc. The first real pine for home comforts are surfacing… but then the realisation of being in the ‘real world’ and everything it involves proves too terrifying, and thoughts are back in Glasto-land. Glastonbury 2009 A slow day is on the card music-wise at least, as legs/feet become sore and bloody, as does the mind. The John Peel Tent seems a good call, to see the impressive Wave Machines; though I could have done without the masks of their own faces on top of their own faces first thing in the morning, slightly fear inducing. Their brand of precision new-wave funk is an enjoyable start to the day. Off for some more meandering, as stumbled upon is: a man of supreme talent with a drum kit on a bike; a ramshackled, farcical, bizarre, 1920’s influenced wrestling match complete with ring; what can only be described as a huge vagina with sofas in; and a man so drunk he dances by himself for an hour shirtless like a giant toddler. Brilliant. Though one sight that was missed was Jimmy McNulty from The Wire, who was spotted wandering about. Bah. Also spotted is a lady parading on stage in a bizarre coloured American Indian head dress made of hands, complete with cape; oh wait, it’s just Karen O from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs. Unfortunately, the first couple of songs are missed due to The Other Stage secretly and irritatingly shifting all the acts forward by 25 minutes or so. But most is seen, the YYY’s as reliable as ever for entertainment and simply consistently excellent tunes. They’re able to change gears at ease, from the astonishingly beautiful Maps to electro keyboard zappery of Zero in a heartbeat. A giant inflatable eyeball from the stage is bounded through the crowd that seems to go on forever; well, why not? Karen O Awhile later as the shadows grow longer is the 2nd set of Glastonbury by Bon Iver, on The Other Stage this time. Not for the first time the mood of the set reflects the atmosphere of the surroundings, an exquisite chill-fest from the Wisconsin group just the remedy as the effects of the weekend begin to take their toll. Justin Vernon’s voice I could happily listen to all day. Skinny Love = Ear sex. In fact, I think his voice should replace all voices in the world – even the mudanaity of the Post Office would be beautiful with Vernon announcing “Cashiiier Number 4 PLEASE”. Glastonbury 2009 Finally, to close the night its Blur. You’ve probably seen it if you wanted to see it, and by God heard about it even you if hadn’t wanted to. Michael Eavis should be seriously aggrieved, as they simply ran off and stole Glastonbury. An impeccable 24-song set list blended their mainstream hits alongside fan boy favourites – it is basically a two-and-a-half-hour sing-a-long. More obscure tracks such as Advert and Chemical World are particularly pleasing, and the hair-tingling power of the crowd singing in unison ‘She says there’s ants in the carpeeet…’ at the start of End of a Century amaze. Tender became almost the anthem for the festival, as Blur went off for a few minutes between encores, the crowd spontaneously break out into song. All too much for Damon Albarn to take at one point as he has a little cry on stage. The whole band seemed up for it and delighted to be back at Glasto, Albarn po-going about like an ADHD kid constantly. The closing double whammy of This is a Low followed by The Universal is that over used phrase mind-blowing; an impeccable way to end the festival. Blur A monsoon of biblical proportions held off til after they finished, so a night time trek to Trash City is cut short. The weekend is over. So there you have it, my first Glastonbury, and most certainly not my last. All that remained is for the long drive home whilst ironically blaring out Limp Bizkit tunes... goodbye Worthy Farm. The 405 Glastonbury Spotify Playlist: Part 2