Friday, June 22, 2007

Glastonbury blog round-up

Felix Martin out of Hot Chip doesn't like Glastonbury very much, he tells the Guardian's music blog:

Do illegal raves still happen? Of course. Are they any good? I don't know. Probably not, but there's certainly potential for fun. What are the alternatives? The legitimate festivals with corporate sponsors, professional promoters and big fences. Glastonbury is far and away the best of a drab bunch, with a rich history of music, drugs and pissing off the locals. But even Glastonbury is threatening to morph into a kind of musical version of the Hay-on-Wye Literary Festival. Mums and dads with prams and spliffs and mud, all there together - it looks all wrong, and I want those horrible, emaciated teenagers to come back, the ones who threatened everyone with flame-throwers made from aerosol cans and lighters, and charged people a fiver to get through gaps in the fence.

You can organise security, you can organise drainage systems, you can organise some of your profits to go to charitable causes - and Glastonbury does all these things in an admirable fashion. However, I'm not so convinced that you can organise having a good time. Free and improvised parties leave open the possibility that something unexpected and good might happen to you. And while there remains the tiny, glimmering suggestion that someone, somewhere in England might actually be having a good time, there will always be those that are out to stop them.

He's got a point. Although Glastonbury would probably argue - with some fairness - that it's not they who have got so middle classed, middle aged, middel England; it's merely followed rock music's path to the place where it now resides, helping sell the Daily Mail through CD giveaways and exclusive interviews rather than helping sell the Daily Mail through outraged editorials and calls for something to be done.

As if to not merely underline Martin's point, but to make notes in the margin and highlight it in dayglo orange, the Guardian Festival Vulture is currently interviewing Harry Enfield.