Sunday, June 29, 2003

FIELD OF DREAMS - MORE GLASTONBURY LIVE: From where we're sitting, we have to admit that it does like the best Glastonbury in years - well organised, happy, and quiet, although we're not sure we're able to judge the cost to the feel of the festival here. What's amused us greatly is that for the entire length of the festival and the run-up weeks, there's been no mention at all of the role of the Mean Fiddler in the event. Curious.

Last night's headlining band was Radiohead, who both live on BBC Three and in the little clips shown on BBC 2 this afternoon looked spectacular; Thom Yorke was grinning like a loon, especially when he thought nobody was looking, and there's nothing sexier than a band enjoying themselves. Even an angst-band. It seems to have been that sort of festival - one which even makes Radiohead smile.

John Peel was showing off bleeding legs, having somehow fallen into some barbed wire (and he wasn't around on BBC2 this afternoon, so we hope TGM* is alright), but his contributions have been exactly what you'd expect - chatting to the cast of the Archers (how old is Fallon now? We just ask because... you know...) and generally being John Peel.

The Sugababes this afternoon looked a bit underwhelmed, and the crowd responded in the same underwhlemed fashion - probably because singing on a stage in the sunlight to a big crowd is pretty much the natural habit of the 'babes, with the circuit of Radio City-style party in the parks these days, so for them it probably felt like just another PA. They seemed to believe that just turning up would be crowd pleasing enough; it wasn't really, and having heard them sing earlier this year at Top of the Pops, we're not sure if they've either had a massive amount of singing tuition, or if they've merely got lip-synching down pat.

What's with the BBC's fetish for Supergrass? Again, with all those performances to choose from, the early evening news chose the 'grass as their illustrative clip for teatime. Is it just the newsroom is full of people of that specific age? But even then, surely they'd have chosen a spot of Radiohead instead?

Away from the stage footage, BBC2 had a strong line-up for its afternoon package - Cerys Matthews (who despite being six weeks away from confinement) looks as thin as a stick, and James Dean Bradfield, who, ahem, isn't, shall we say? Both the Welsh turned in a song - Cerys doing Stuck in the middle, and James, unwisely, picking Art Garfunkel's bunny-hymn Bright Eyes. I think by the second chorus everyone had realised that not enough thought had been put into this choice - the viewers, the production team, and especially James. Let's hope it doesn't dent his confidence too much before the manic street preachers go on tonight.

* - The Great Man


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