The annual Glastonbury review (part 1)

Once again I’m writing this on the saddest, snivelliest day since returning from that muddy old homestead known as Worthy Farm. This evening saw me leap on completely the wrong bus because my eyes were full of tears brought on by listening to The War On Drugs and wishing I was back in that soggy field. More sleep is obviously still required (although it’s a glorious evening and a pint is calling, even though I’ve only just weaned myself off the Rennies from a week-long cider diet).

Anyway, while I’m in a Pilton state of mind, the highlights of my Glastonbury – part one, Wednesday to Friday.


#1: The War On Drugs, Pyramid Stage, Fri

Obviously my heightened emotional state makes me somewhat biased because their lush soundscapes have been making me weepy all day, but this set was just sublime. Frustratingly, the BBC chose not to record anything on the Pyramid Stage before 1.45pm on Friday, so there’s no decent video recording apart from this acoustic number recorded later on and the dodgy-audio am-cam below – you’ll have to take my word for it. Soaring, swooping, immaculate – this was just the ticket to kick off our “official” Glastonbury (even though we’d been going 48 hours already). And there’s no one on this earth who can “Woooo!” like Adam Granduciel.


#2: Vintage Trouble, West Holts, Fri

The biggest disappointment of the festival was this amazing band getting pulled off stage after just two songs due to lightning strikes and what turned out to be the biggest downpour of the weekend. These guys are IN-FUCKING-CREDIBLE, despite what the frankly rubbish BBC sound mix would have you believe. (And playing the Islington Assembly Hall later this month – my kingdom for a pair of tickets…)


#3: Old Dirty Brasstards, Williams Green, Thurs

The ODB cheekily wiped the floor with Sean Rowley at his own Guilty Pleasures night with a selection of their own even guiltier, brassier pleasures. I don’t think I’ll ever get over seeing the Chap belt out Lady Gaga – I never even knew he knew any Lady Gaga lyrics. (The video below is from another gig, but you get the picture.)


#4: New York Brass Band and Booka Brass Band, Toad Hall, Fri

A while back, I wrote a post about the sheer mass of brass happening at Glastonbury this year and tweeted about it, @-replying the various suspects, which rather delighfully led to the bands making plans for a mass brass attack during the event. Sadly the ODB couldn’t join the fun, but I was stoked beyond belief to see that the NYBB and BBB made it happen – and in superb style. I can’t find a clip of the madness that was the Toad Hall set, but check out this one from the Greenpeace field the previous day, and double it.


#5: Seth Troxler, NYC Downlow, Fri

We arrived yet again to the welcoming nightly bosom of the Downlow, the best gay disco since the Gallery and the Garage, after a meandering route from Arcade Fire (who were good but not mindblowing, probably given they’d blown our minds when we saw them three weeks ago). This protracted journey saw us take in the many and varied delights of Glebeland and the Circus field, including the astonishing “kings of cowpunk”, Pronghorn, on the Summer House stage. After an hour of stomping to Pronghorn, we were refreshed, revitalised and ready for anything the Downlow could throw at us. Luckily this was the mighty Seth Troxler, whose cosmic disco set proved to be just the ticket and saw us dance our mud-covered wellies back to bare rubber before the legendary Danny Krivit took the reins.


Honourable mentions:


  • Just one – that the queue for David Morales’ Frankie Knuckles tribute was so obscenely long that entry was impossible.

Part two to follow…

About missjenferguson

Lover of books, beer, chilli & records. Proud Peckhamite.
This entry was posted in Brass action, Disco, Festivals, Funk, Rock / pop and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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