Saturday, June 23, 2007

Broadsheet round-up:

Alexis Petridis was down the front (or, at least, perched comfortably in the VIP area) for the Arcade Fire and the Guardian:

Variety of end-of-days scenarios suggested in lyrics seem oddly more pertinent when you're listening to them up to your knees in slurry, stood next to a disconcerting man in a jester's hat, sniffing amyl nitrate. In addition, certain lyrics take on a curiously prophetic bent given inclement conditions: "Come out of the rain!" exhorts Butler at one juncture. "You can do it!" Minor mid-set lull blown away by cataclysmic finale, involving mass singalong to Wake Up.

It seems that the BBC had focused quite heavily on the mid-set lull, then.

Eugene Hutz of Gogol Bordello seized the Guardian blog to ruminate on festivals which have lost their soul:
As for festivals we haven't enjoyed playing: there was some horrible thing... I don't need to say which one, but I don't enjoy playing where all I see is fucking Miller Lite commercials in my face and tons of fucking cops.

I don't know whether Glastonbury is a travellers' festival still: that's not what I heard but I'm going to find out for myself after this. I heard that it's a land of rape and murder. Some experts, some reliable sources told me. But of course Glastonbury still has the ability to do change people's minds and alter their consciousness. You've just got to get the right bands and the right people will come, and they'll have the right reaction - liberation, catharsis, grabbing the tits of somebody else's girlfriend. You know - the usual!

The Telegraph has attempted to out-grump the Mail by sending Christopher Howse along to Worthy Farm. He's the "only festival goer with a tie", which means he can expect pete Doherty to seek him out to borrow it later on, then. Christoper hasn't fallen for the "traveller's festival" story any more than Eugene has:
Among the 30,000 cars in the car parks, there are plenty of Audis, Volvos and BMWs. Ten thousand, almost all young, came greenly by train and then chugged the last miles on dirty old buses.

"We're doing a dance degree at Greenwich," says my 20-year-old neighbour, pointing to her fair-haired friend. But now they're spending the weekend working in a vegan cafe, hoping to slip out to see Bjork. Bjork has been here before, she just can't remember.

If for some Glastonbury is joining the social season with Ascot and Henley, its style is still young and grungy. At Henley gentlemen must still wear ties. Here I spent 24 hours without seeing anyone else with one on. Ascot cocktail dresses and feather hats can look vulgar. Here the middle class come in muddy disguise.

Over in the The Times, Pete Paphides looks at what the bill tells us about the modern world:
Winehouse aside, it was a bill that rammed home the point that we are living in a postOasis age, where supersized indie bands trumpet the everyman values that allow their fans to live vicariously through them. Dundee’s bafflingly popular practitioners of indie dirges, The View, seemed to suit the worsening conditions. If only their fans’ chant – “The View are on fire!” – were true.


caffeinehunter said...

So here we are again another Glastonbury and another farce and yet criticising the Eavis family is like criticising Princess Diana after her death, it's just not done. And yet the facts are simple: over a thousand casualties (albeit some minor), would any other mass event get away with this? 170,000 people charged £150 for a ticket for which they don't know the line up, not enough basic facilities, not enough security for the camping (no other festival has as many thefts from tents). But each time Eavis rolls up and says how much he has had to spend in order to stage this event, and we're supposed to feel sorry for him because he’s had to invest a (relatively) small amount of money in order to make a much larger amount. Each time rain is forecast, Eavis rolls up and says its sunny and will be the best ever, and each time the conditions are appalling then Eavis pops up to tell us he has spent several hundred thousand pounds yet it never gets any better and people get ill, in the past a child has died and people have contracted e colli. But each time it is criticised people pop up and tell us 'it's part of the fun, it's the spirit, the point' yet other festivals through Europe manage to put on equally (and yes believe me Glastonbury is not as unique as people would have you believe) big shows with spirit and bill but without the sheer hell that is Glastonbury. Of course he can’t control the weather but he could actually properly invest some time and money to sort this out. The one thing, which distinguishes the European festivals from Glastonbury, is that they treat people with a respect lacking from the Eavis family, in fact they (the Eavis family) have become more and more arrogant towards the paying public as time has gone on. Any criticism is met with Eavis presenting himself as the jolly farmer turning his field over, for Gods sake he takes £25million on the gate, then there are the concession fees and broadcasting, as well as the interest in the bank from 150,000 advance payments, this is big business whatever way you look at it and its time the Eavis family were made to acknowledge this, come on people you wouldn't take this from anyone else, don’t take it from him, he’s conning you all he’s taking your money and laughing at you…

Anonymous said...

Reminds me of something which happened a few years ago (in the days before eBay and electricity). I remember reading an angry letter to Melody Maker from someone who'd had a bad Glastonbury experience - I think it was failing to get a ticket when the phonelines melted at 9am.

The next issue featured a reply from Michael Eavis himself, explaining away the problems they'd had. He ended the letter on a somewhat odd note; He said "Hope you have a better time next year. If you can get a ticket."

The response was huge, a lot of people unhappy that the nice Mr Eavis had suddenly taken the line of "Complain all you like, there are plenty of suckers who'll happily take your place"

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