Monday, August 30, 2004

FESTIVAL FALL-OUT CONTINUES: We don't think there's ever been an instance of an act so far up the Reading bill as second headline getting bottled off; but that's what happened to 50 Cent. Obviously the crowd had got a taste for blood earlier in the day, having dispatched Rasmus, but the supposed gangsta rapper was a much mightier scalp - he lasted about fifteen minutes before leaving. Of course, it's very impolite to throw stuff at people, but it does suggest that the paying public disagreed strongly with Melvin benn's claims that the bill at Reading was really strong. Elsewhere at the Tesco Value Lager Weekend, Morgan Nicholls managed to leave his bass behind in Leeds, which would have screwed up the Streets set in Reading, were it not for Amplifier's Neil Mahony lending him a replacement.

Despite the attrition directed at the artists (or perhaps because of), police are reporting that the crowd was a lot more "mellow" than in previous years, which goes to prove if you need to calm people down, throwing them knee-deep into mud is a bloody good plan. Even so, there were 430 crimes reported, which makes one in every 125 festival goers a victim of crime, which is quite remarkable in a three-day period. The same crime rate in London would mean nearly twenty thousand reported crimes a day. Thank god the crowd were mellow.

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