Sunday, June 24, 2007

GlastOn TV

Sweeping The Nation has been watching Glastonbury on the BBC:

[A] lot of message boards seem to be bellyaching about the standard of the presenting but we see no real difference from any other year, and this afternoon Lauren was on rare form like we haven't seen her on prime-time telly for years.

We've also seen a lot of people suggesting that the event is "missing John Peel", but to be honest, we never felt comfortable watching Peel presenting Glastonbury in the past; as he himself would admit, live TV wasn't really his thing and most of his links have off the air of a man who'd much rather have been stood quietly at the back of a tent watching music than throwing to the Stereo MCs set on BBC2.

Back in the present, the Manics turn up and show a hint of what the future might hold for Pete Doherty; the fire in the belly long since replaced with something more showbizzy, working the crowd instead of rousing the rabble. On those terms, the band are right on form at the moment, although watching middle-aged men performing in front of a massive picture of teenage girls in hotpants is a bit of a queasy moment; like some of the reactions to Jonathan in Big Brother, although it's an innocent gesture, it has enough of a creepy air to it to make you wonder if they thought it through.

The Rakes are doing 22 Grand Job, but there's an air of a band whose moment has passed about them. Maybe if there'd been a festival last year, they'd have managed to keep some momentum to build upon; even they seem to have know this is probably a wake.

Oh, look... here come people dressed as animals. It's Mika's set, and alongside the contents of a badly stocked Fancy Dress Store and the inflatable ladies, Mika is bouncing, bouncing, bouncing. He's trying very, very hard. But all the effort is visible, like whatever the opposite of a swan paddling under the water would be - a fish struggling in a net? He's trying to sell a sizzle, but can't disguise there's no steak there.

The Kaiser Chiefs fans seem to perk up the wetter and wetter their heroes get, although that might be because they get wetter as the set goes on, and the longer they play, the closer they get to their decent songs.

Surprisingly, Mark Ronson turns out to be much more fun to watch being interviewed than playing music. As he's talking to Zane Lowe and Edith Bowman (who's wearing her Ermintrude hat right up to the last), you find yourself thinking "this guy is really funny, and charming, and warm. Why don't we like his music?" Then, you swap to a stream where he's murdering The Zutons' Valerie, and you remember.