So here we are again then, the first day of the Reading Festival. I’m here with my good friend Nick Horslen and I am aiming to post a review of each day for you. Obviously I expect some comment as I doubt that you’ll agree with everything I say. Incidentally some of the opinions in the blog were suggested by Nick. I just wanted to make sure I gave him equal credit!
The Bronze Medal were first up for us on BBC Introducing Stage, they sounded ok, but personally I don’t see them scaling great heights. The Blackout were next up on the Main Stage, with a magnificent backdrop that said ‘Fuck The Blackout’. Personally I’d rather not as I didn’t find them that attractive! But they were pretty good and pretty heavy. Bizarrrely they dedicated what they called their heaviest song to all the sluts in the audience, so I guess we didn’t qualify for that. Miles Kane was in the NME/ Radio 1 tent. He is like an animated Liam Gallagher with a guitar. He was also very bloody good. New Found Glory were on the Main Stage, I thought that they were accomplished but perhaps not as good as they were. However they did a great cover of Sixpence None The Richer‘s “kiss Me”.
We then caught a part of Hugh Lennon‘s act on the Alternative Stage, he is a rather amusing hypnotist. After that we opted for Dry The River on the Festival Republic stage, definitely a good band. They have a bit of Biffy Clyro with added violin. Pity they couldn’t dry the skies though! It was pissing down again by then and parts of the ground were covered in mud with the consistency of melted chocolate. We then saw Cerebal Ballzy, we were initially attracted by such a brilliant name. What were they like? Ballsy (or perhaps I should say ballzy) punk from Brooklyn! Al Pitcher kept us out of the rain and not only that he was a brilliant comedian. He was followed by Dead Cat Bounce, we felt that their name was better than their act!
Foster The People gave us electro pop via Tom Tom Club and Talking Heads. An immense band, definitely best of the day for me. I will be downloading their album when I’m home on Monday. The crowd went absolutely mental for them!! The Antlers came next and their singer gave us soundcheck yodel! Their sound is a kind of tripped out psychadelic space vibe. The Deftones were on the Main Stage, they were heavy and reliable and did what it says on the tin.
Anna Calvi, hmmmm, what can I say, definitely a little strange. Percussive blues, operatic type vocal and unintelligable lyrics. The Offspring were excellent value for money and still pretty fly for white guys! They have aged well and are still pretty good but definitely not pretty. Noah and the Whale completely rocked the NME/ Radio stage. An incredible build up using an orchestral version of Bohemian Rhapsody; who’d have thought that we’d be singing that song at Reading this year? They truly are a great fucking band a bit like Vampire Weekend with more orchestration and less African style guitars. We hung around for the White Lies and it was worth the wait. These guys used to come to Reading as teenagers and clearly they’ve learnt a lot! Bloody good band. Then it was the much anticipated Beady Eye, which frankly is really Oasis without Noel isn’t it? They were like an Oasis tribute band playing songs they had written in an Oasis style. Liam’s voice is clearly not what it was either and his stage presence is way past it’s sell by date. We headed for the exit and glimpsed My Chemical Romance who seemed to have quite a small crowd for a Main Stage headline act. Anyway time to sign off for now and get ready for day two!