Saturday, July 04, 2009

Festival time

Yesterday, Jodie and I went to one of Europe's great rock festivals at Werchter in Belgium. We mainly went to see Coldplay, who closed the day and were truly awesome again. They are brilliant at festivals because the carry the crowd with them, and once again, we left the grounds with everyone still singing the chant from Viva la Vida. Truly great, but no surprises about that. it was what we were expecting anyway.

The biggest surprises for me were Elbow, whose act we just caught the end of, and the Killers. Elbow are really different and very good indeed, playing a kind of prog-rock instrumental mix combined with Keane style melodies and soaring vocals. Yummy music. I like! The Killers, on the other hand, have a distinct new Wave feel and were EXCELLENT! It's not popular to like them it seems, but they were so professional and such great performers. They put on a fantastic show and I loved it.

One thing we both noticed was how pleasant and well organised the festival was. The market and food stalls were mostly lining the approaching road outside the grounds, and had places where you could sit down and eat or drink in comfort. There were also stalls inside but not so many, and it meant there was less of a crush. The crowd were peaceful, friendly and polite with young guys even apologising for being tall if they were standing in front of us, and asking if we could see properly. We couldn't of course, but that wasn't their fault, and we appreciated the kindness. As usual we had to rely on the big screens to see all but glimpses of the performers, but all the same it was great to be with such a nice crowd, and a very mixed one at that. I was definitely not the oldest there...amazing, hey?


  1. That sounded like so much fun, Val!
    It is always a pleasure to be around polite and pleasant people - even shoulder to shoulder in a crowd at a rock festival!
    I, too, like the Killers - I don't know why others don't.
    Maybe it's their name...

    Right now festival venues and such are the farthest thing from my mind...


  2. Music and food. What a great combo. Good music that is! The Killers aren't popular in your part of the world? hmm, they are here.

    sounds like a blast.


  3. Elbow and The Killers...very popular here, we bought the Elbow cd...lovely and are going to get the Killers next time in town!

  4. Hi Val,

    good for you to see Coldplay again. The gig we will see is in August. I love the music from "The Killers", too.
    Last Friday we saw Bruce Springsteen in Frankfurt. He and the E-Street-Band were fantastic.
    They played nearly three hours. Next week I will show some pics I made this night.


  5. I've had bad festival experiences (at Slane Castle, Ireland, nearly getting stranded in pitch-dark night in fields rather far away from Dublin) and good festival experiences (the one recently with The Flaming Lips). In the right time, right place and with the right people they can be the best way of listening to music. Though I have to admit that I'm too much a lover of comfort to do it hardcore, like the full Glastonbury or something, several days in a tent, mud, dirt.

  6. Hi Val,

    if you will start with the Bruce Springsteen music, go and listen "Live in New York City" [2-CD's] recorded 2001, or the DVD from this gig.


  7. Well, it's good to know you all like the Killers too! I thought they were really impressive and Brandon Flowers (what a name hey?) has an incredible voice.

    Dale so glad you're ok, and yes, the Killers is not a name I would choose, but you don't forget it, do you?

    String I'm also going to buy an Elbow album. I just don't know which one as they've done a few. Any recommendations?

    Grace, I don't think the Killers aren't popular. In fact I think they are. It's just that all the critics slam them, so they make it not 'cool' to be a fan, but the crowd liked them a lot.

    Stefan, thanks for the tips! I think my daughter has a few albums, so I'll try hers too ;-)

    Maria,I don't think I could do four days now either, but then neither could Jodie and she's just 30. That's for those with lots of stamina..

  8. ah, who cares what the critics think!!

    anyway, you give me good ideas ~ I posted a comment to your comment just now, and my June has such a personality and does crazy things all the time, that An Adventures of June once in awhile might be entertaining. (if I can write entertaining that is!) I have a couple of friends that when they call, always what has june been up to these days!!

  9. Ah Vally, once a wild child, always a wild child. The festival sounds wonderful. I think it's a great way to hear new music, and try to go to such events with as open a mind as possible. I am always happily surprised at what I find. So the Killers are uncool there, eh? Interesting.

    Just read your last post too. I'm in awe of your time management skills - you write, follow multiple blogs as well as regularly posting on your own four (or is it five now?), and go out to work too. Oh, and maintain three boats and a house. Amazing woman.

    I must show Colin those blogs you introduced us to - I think he'd love them too.

    Must dash - going to a gig later tonight and need to organise dinner for all first - we're off to my favourite little jazz club to hear Emma's singing teacher and James' piano teacher play a couple of sets together (small world story). They're both brilliant, so it should be a great night.

  10. Oh Grace, yes you should write those June stories fact I must persuade Sin to get back to her blog again too. You should here her take on the bilges incident...I don't know though, the language might need some editing ;-)

    Margie, the way you put it, I feel almost ashamed of my indulgences. My only excuse is that I do have to work quite hard to keep up with it all! Good to see you back again and hope you enjoyed the the gig. You don't need to go to festivals - you have your musicians constantly on tap. Lucky you for being doyenne of such a talented family!

  11. Val, I have never forgotten about the book we talked about. I really should. I jsut get so overwhelmed when I get into my computer and all the pictures and folders I have stored.. I have not forgotten....

    xo Sindy blog pics...I miss. xo

  12. Ah Grace, Sin said s'not fair cos no one looked at her last two posts except Koos, so she's sulking now....maybe I can persuade her to get back to it!


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