Monday, 26 July 2010

Track of the Week 2010: #30 - Tramlines Special

Blood Red Shoes – 'Heartsink'

The Count And Sinden feat. Mystery Jets – 'After Dark'

Tramlines (Sheffield's annual free music festival) occurred over the last weekend, and although I wasn't present for the whole thing and was therefore unable to catch acts such as Pulled Apart By Horses and Darwin Deez I managed to fully get my monies worth.

On the Saturday it was to the Drowned in Sound curated New Music Stage featuring the most Keep Pop Loud friendly line up of any stage on any day. Chapel Club had the honour of being the first act that I caught, and although the puny soundsytem did them no justice it was obvious that they were nearly as good as their Thursday-at-Glasto defining set. Dinosuar Pile-Up and The Twilight Sad were both different types of noisy, as could be expected and deserve mention but it was the headliners who provide us with our first of this weeks Tracks of the Week. Blood Red Shoes are a formidable live act and have this past week unleashed their new video for 'Heartsink'. My favourite from their recent Fire Like This album it brings to mine questions about art and destruction that I would have discussed here if I'd decided not to go for a Tramlines festival theme.

A theme which I'm stretching somewhat for the second TotW/Sunday review. Only catching three bands on this day The Neat (another holder of a TotW, back in April), Mystery Jets and Echo & the Bunnymen. And Mystery Jets didn't actually play this song. But they wouldn't, because it's not actually one of theirs. A collaborative effort with a London electro outfit The Count & Sinden Will and Kai from the Jets provide guitars and vocals for a track that, as well as being as summery as sand in your ice cream, holds all of the essence of Mystery Jets. Even more baffling seeing as the vocals are provided by a man who's not even MJs lead singer. Any who, Mystery Jets were ace at Tramlines and this song is also something that I really like. Let's hope it's a hit.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

What's been happening in the art-pop world whilst you've been at festivals and the blogsphere has been working itself up over the latest hip-hop?

Well, lots. And it's my favourite type of music, so I'm quite silly for not covering it in more depth.

Sky Larkin have quietly released their second album, Kaleide, the follow up to one of KPL's Albums of the Year 2009. It's available as a free download from their website when you pre-order the physical version, which is available in several different pretty packages. I've only had chance to give it the most cursory of into listens, but so far am of the opinion that it's a more than successor to The Golden Spike. The approach to it however is drastically different from a listeners point of view, for where the first album by the group consisted mainly of familiar songs newly recorded, this is a record of completely new material.

, everyone's favourite britpop-indebted artrockers, are back as well with new single 'The Naked And The Dead' being viewable on youtube below and album track 'Identity' available on the free CD with this month's Artrocker Magazine (along with a rather fabulous song from the forthcoming The Strange Death of Liberal England album). Said album, Railway Architecture also features the Silvery cover of 'You Give A Little Love', from the Buggsy Malone musical. Early impression suggest that Railway Architecture could provide us with the post-punk shot in the arm that we've so been desiring all year long.

The news about You Say Party! We Say Die! is worth reporting on here, in case you've missed it. The band, following the tragic and sudden death of their drummer and subsequent departure of keyboardist will no longer be known by the same moniker. From now on they will be simply You Say Party. The reasons for this are completely understandable and the recently finished album, XXXX has just been released in the UK to positive reviews – I've not heard it myself but I can't be everywhere and they're far from a bad band so go check it out for yourself.

Delays also have a new album out. Star Tiger Star Ariel is, by no means, their best album. Dipping in the middle it's still mighty decent. Standout songs that you should listen to are 'The Lost Estate' and 'May '45', which retain the lost summer harmonies of Faded Seaside Glamour and the synth-pop tenancies of their career-high You See Colours. As is something of a common thread amongst decent comeback records this year, STSA failed to chart and seemingly has sold very few copies.

On the singles front there's a bucket load of stuff to flick through. The Futureheads have unleashed one of the finest moments from the honest-to-God-utterly-brilliant-album The Chaos as a single. 'I Can Do That' is probably the best single since 'Heartbeat Song'. Keep Pop Loud does bloody love The Futureheads

Mystery Jets
, sadly haven't sold as many albums as they've deserved to. I refer not just to Serotonin, which also failed to chart (I see a pattern here) but to their previous two records also. Still, we can be consoled by the fact that lead single from the record, 'Dreaming Of Another World' is a giddy pop joy and a reminder of the days when I felt young enough to frequent indie discos.

An older single now, and one that I'm idiotic for missing initially. 'Schoolin'' came out a month or so ago and is by the currently hyped up Everything Everything. I can only assume that I neglected to mention it because it's not a patch on 'MY KZ, UR BF'. It's still brilliant of course, as you can see here, and has given the group an all important push prior to Man Alive, their amazingly artworked debut album.

The Pains of Being Pure at Heart just recently slipped us the 7” treat that is 'Say No To Love' / 'Lost Saint'. The limited vinyl is gorgeously/hideously green and coincides with their appearance at the twee-fest that is Indietracks this weekend. It's pretty good and not on their stunning self-titled album, so even more worthy of checking out.

One of my most favouritest bands in the world, Johnny Foreigner, have a free download of a new song over at their blogsite. It's technically a remix of an as yet unreleased track but as the first version available it's sort of not. Called 'With Who, Who and What You've Got', I love it very much, but that's because I love JoFo and would happily buy a new album of theirs every couple of months if they could record that fast.

A new name for the KPL archive is Crocodiles. I've got a copy of their single 'Sleep Forever' in my Currently Reviewing pile. It's really bloody great. Think Jesus And Mary Chain recorded in sepia on a Californian beach and you're most of the way there. Thankfully there's a video you can watch so you don't just have to imagine.

Lastly, witness the return of Klaxons with the just-above-average 'Echoes', watch the The Pipettes new video here , be baffled by the fact that the Trachtenburg Family Slideshow Players have covered the new Kate Nash single (available as a B-side to teh CD of 'Kiss That Grrrl') and congratulate the Mercury Prize panel for nominating the wonderful Villagers album Becoming A Jackal

DISCLAIMER: if one of these songs crops up as next week's Track of the Week it is down to the awesomeness of the song or brilliance of the band, not the laziness of the blogger. Thankyou!

Monday, 19 July 2010

Track of the Week 2010: #29

Mark Ronson & The Business Intl feat. Q-Tip & MNDR - Bang Bang Bang

This is not something that I ever foresaw happening. Mark Ronson releasing a addictive, brilliant single. But pop's disposable right? We can all have forgotten about this in a month or so. It's the 'She Wolf' of 2010.

Yet, I'm a sucker for big multi-voiced collaborative albums (Demon Days, Plastic Beach, The Brighton Port Authority album and Yourcodenameis:milo's Print Is Dead can attest to that) so long as they don't just feature sped up covers played by a brass section. Therefore I will probably (almost definitely) have a listen to 'Bang Bang Bang's parent album Record Collection. It helps that it also features Rose Elinor Dougall who made her star turn as a Pipette on The Pipettes brilliant debut album.

Talking of star turns, legendary rapper Q-Tip's appearance on 'Bang Bang Bang' is arguably what makes the single, even though the majority of the vocal is supplied by MNDR. She's apparently Amanda Warner from the band MNDR but it seems like La Roux, Warner will become known as the embodiment of the band with her fellow taking a backseat. Either way, from this performance the band could well be a promising act.

So as much as I want to hate Ronson, the smug punchable cunt, it seems that he's bloody gone and done it! Pure pop that's so good I want to have forgotten about it before the End of Year List comes around.

Monday, 12 July 2010

Track of the Week: 2010 #28

Chapel Club – Five Trees

There are many reasons why Chapel Club's 'Five Trees' should be Track of the Week on Keep Pop Loud this week. But here's five!

#1) Chapel Club have proven, repeatedly with cracking singles and a great Glastonbury performance that they are a superb new band and very much deserve that little bit more push that hopefully I can give them.

#2) 'Five Trees' has been around for a while and I've yet to stick the video up here. This may mean that I'm behind the trend slightly, but this allows me to make up for lost time

#3) The kind lads that they are / It being the done thing in the Record Industry these days – Chapel Club have a free download available from their website. It's called 'The Shore' and shows a different more sky-scraping side to the group that is equally as brilliant as the post-punk below.

#4) They've been confirmed for this year's Tramlines festival in Sheffield. Which has been expanded upon from last year, and which should see my dutiful and corresponding attendance.

#5) The video.

Wednesday, 7 July 2010

Glastonbury Review Part 2

It was over a week ago now but I have my little programme next to me, and I'm sure perfect recollection will occur. So, for those who still care...


A day involving much chopping and changing between areas started bright and early (11AM) on the Other Stage for the second Two Door Cinema Club set of the festival. As they were playing on a decent sized stage I was actually able to witness and enjoy this performance. Samey towards they end they may have been, but with their post-punk and electronic influenced indie-pop they proved to be a delightful find (several months behind the rest of the country, I grant you).

Another delightful set came next, and surprisingly from The Lightning Seeds. On the behest of some of my companions we went to the Pyramid awaiting Ian Broudie and whichever session musicians he tours with these days. Amongst the new songs and the less well known hits they treated us to 'Pure' 'Life of Riley' and 'Sugar Coated Iceberg'. The last delighted most due to the realisation that no matter how often the über-hit had been hammered by the local radio station of my youth, given a few years off and a fresh setting the track came across as full and epic as ever.

Lucky us, as we plodded to the Avalon Stage next apparently ahead of a good proportion of the festival. The tent was far over capacity and more potential punters were gathered outside hoping to catch some glimpse of the set. “Was this another set by Thome Yorke?” you ask. No. I was there only for The Wurzels. Kicking all of the naysayers right in the scrumpy the Somerset legends played a set that was unmissable on a sunny Glastonbury lunchtime. Playing all of the hits that you'd expect and a rather brilliant version of Kaiser Chiefs 'Ruby' they hilariously, but un-ironically were a true highlight.

Back on the Other Stage (easily the best stage of the weekend) it was time for Kate Nash whose mix of songs from her two albums justifies why it is I'm in love with her as an artist. Full of energy but looking as though she was baking in the heat her set closed with what appeared to be an attempt to break her keyboard by jumping repeatedly on it. She was followed by The National, who I confess were one of the main bands that I had in mind to see. They in no way disappointed playing a perfect set far more aggressively than any of their wonderful record would suggest.

Some shaky footage of 'Foundations' should break up the text a bit.

It turned out that rather than being Friday's surprise guests Biffy Clyro were playing the secret slot on the Park Stage on the Saturday. Unfortunately post-National the field was rammed and there was measures preventing anyone else entering for Biffy. Unfortunate as it was, the girlfriend and I headed to Foals – a band that I've despised in the past. Live, any negative feeling I've ever felt towards them was completely unjustified. Even the previously irritating 'Cassius' was a juddering monster with a low end enough to rattle the Strongbow abuse out of me. The only regret with Foals was that I was unable to realistically watch the whole set. I had to get a good spot for Scissor Sisters.

After all, how could I not watch Scissor Sisters. There was the promise of a guest slot from Kylie, the flawless debut album and the premièring of new material. All was delivered with the unfathomably camp, over the top splendour that was expected and appreciated. To be honest they only really got going four songs in with 'Take Your Mama', but with the delivery of new single 'Fire With Fire' and number one hit 'I Don't Feel Like Dancing' they were impossible to dislike. Kylie did turn up, but you've heard about that by now.

Truthfully, I was wanting to go and see the Pet Shop Boys next. Doggedly, however I stuck with Muse hoping for all of the tricks to be pulled out of the bag. Also, I was feeling a bit poorly and my ankle was aching (this always happens when I go to see Muse for some reason). Unfortunately although they played a phenomenally tight and strong set there was the feeling that something was a little bog-standard about it. 'Guiding Light', 'Hysteria', 'Time Is Running Out', 'Starlight', 'Map of the Problematique' all predictable and none of it really clicking. Fantastic light show, but nothing that we've not seen before. The Edge is bought out for the encore, and whilst I admit booing him the rendition of 'Where The Streets Have No Name' that followed proved the jolt that Muse needed. 'Plug In Baby' and 'Knights of Cydonia' kicked a lot more to close but I was left with the impression that had The Edge stuck around for these last two songs the whole set would have felt a lot more special. Not disappointing as such, just expectations that were far too high.

The spectacular 'Where The Streets Have No Name' cover. This doesn't do it justice.


Today could pretty much be renamed The Day That I Used The Other Stage As a Base, such was the unmissable line-up. The Joy Formidable first, and the best pre-album band in the country by a mile. Phenomenal drummer too. Frightened Rabbit's set comprised of material from their two most recent albums with stand-outs being 'Swim Until You Can't See Land' and 'Old Old Fashioned'. 'Keep Yourself Warm' concluded with their singer belting out a few lyrics from 'South Town Girls' by The Hold Steady, who were due up next. And whilst wonderful wasn't something I could dwell on, as I had a dash to and from the West Holts Stage to complete.

Only managing to catch the middle portion of The Bees set: 'A Minha Menina', 'The Russian' and 'Who Cares What The Question Is?' aren't to be sniffed at. Perplexingly they sounded more akin to The Coral's than they do The Bees' records, something which I decided in my walk back to my friends at The Other Stage, was definitely not a bad thing. The Bees ticked off my list, after listening to their records for over half a decade, was a load off my mind and I caught the entirety of The Hold Steady.

Speeding through a load of songs in very little time, those that proved most enjoyable were 'The Weekenders', 'Sequestered In Memphis', 'Chips Ahoy!', 'South Town Girls' and 'Hurricane J'. Overall a brilliant set, in amongst many. Same can't exactly be said for The Temper Trap, who were solid although let down by the weight of expectation set by one song, and a sub-par vocal performance. Decent enough though, and they drew a more than respectable crowd. There's certainly going to be a huge fanbase by the time they reach album number two.

Expectedly, Ray Davies 'legends slot' set bought with it a load of Kinks hits and the best non-Gorilaz performance of the festival. Dedicating many of the songs to recently deceased Kinks bassman Peter Quaife and introduction of a choir for slower tracks such as 'See my Friends' there was a poignancy and heart-wrenching beauty that bought tears to the eyes. Despite his age Mr Davies can hardly be considered past it. Rocking out with a full band 'You Really Got Me', 'Lola', 'Johnny Thunder' and 'Waterloo Sunset' all enthralled a slightly unappreciative Pyramid Stage Crowd before the finale of 'Days' and 'All Day And All Of The Night' made me feel high and giddy. Happier I could not have been. Even if I had missed the entirety of Grizzly Bear and the first few songs of We Are Scientists.

It's 'Waterloo Sunset' ferchristsakes

Still, having seen WAS several times before and getting there in plenty of time to see them rattle through 'Nobody Move, Nobody Get Hurt', 'Impatience', 'Rule's Don't Stop', 'Jack And Ginger', 'After Hours', 'Chick Lit', 'It's A Hit' and 'The Great Escape' it was impossible to feel short changed. Andy Burrows on drums seems to make the band even more likeable, if that were possible. Chris still manages to talk nonsense between songs, making us laugh even if we're not sure why.

Unlike MGMT next, who were – in a word – woeful. That the breeze took some of the sound quality is understood, but the duo's inability to sing or play in time was atrocious and lead me and the missus to head back to the Leftfield tent (we'd popped by earlier to see a little bit of Billy Bragg, who I was literally rubbing shoulders with) for The King Blues. In honesty their socially conscious street-punk isn't my sort of thing, but their energy and passion came across brilliantly and although not catching 'Save The World, Get The Girl' I couldn't help but be hugely impressed.

After my departure I'm informed that MGMT played 'Kids' from a CD and buggered off stage. I'm even more glad that I hadn't stuck around for what by all accounts was the worst set of the festival. I'm back on the Other for LCD Soundsystem however, who I wouldn't have missed for the world. The immaculate nature of their studio recordings was replicated very well. Tight and funky James Murphy and co got away with missing off some of the hits in favour of closing with a ten-plus minute rendition of 'Yeah' (Crass Version). Phenomenal and memorable.

Regrouping with the girlfriend that I'd left at The King Blues it was time to decide on which headliners to watch. Stevie Wonder was packed. Absurdly so. Watching from outside of the field 'Master Blaster (Jammin')' sounded ace, but knowing few of his other songs we opted for Ash, followed by a smidgen of Gomez. It was the right decision. Ash mixed in the rockier moments from The A-Z Series of singles ('Dionysian Urge', 'Joy Kicks Darkness') with the classics from their debut ('Girl From Mars', 'Goldfinger', 'Kung Fu') and the radio straddling mega-hits ('Shining Light' and 'Burn Baby Burn') for the perfect closing set of the festival, where I knew every word and could bounce around like a lunatic. High from this we darted to Gomez catching the last couple of songs (which in honesty I cannot name) for the perfect mellow end to a sunny Glastonbury.

There I'll leave it. I received some bad news at the end of Gomez's set which unfortunately gave the festival a downer ending. Said bereavement is why I may be blogging even less for the next week or so. Here's my Glastonbury playlist again, however, for your enjoyment. Remember to add in 'The Greatest Light Is The Greatest Shade' by The Joy Formidable between Muse and Frightened Rabbit for the complete experience however.

Monday, 5 July 2010

Track of the Week: 2010 #27

Janelle Monáe ft. Big Boi – Tightrope

If there's something that's missing from my music collection then it's a decent contemporary soul singer. Enter Janelle Monáe: Outkast collaborator and woman whose album is adorned in this artwork...

'Tightrope', as you might or might not expect is a tight and funky number that's minimal enough to allow Ms Monáe's vocal to flit between rap and soul but also full enough to announce itself as a proper pop number. The brass section is enough to make Mark Ronson mighty jealous but unobtrusive enough that it interferes not with the vocal prowess.

As a demonstrator of Janelle's wonderful vocal talent it's pretty remarkable, and that she refuses to do an irritating climb that's much loved by commercial R&B stars is a godsend. That's even before we even get to her guest star – Outkast man Big Boi. His vocal is distinctive even to those who have only ever heard his regular band on the radio; a big almost mumbling flow that's ice cool and deeply masculine, without veering into ridiculous posturing. The juxtaposing of the two styles is the finest get together of two artists this year outside of a Gorillaz record. The parent album, pictured above, is due out next Monday.

Her hair in the video is also improbable.

Also worth checking out, if this floats your boat is Big Boi's own single 'Shutterbgug', which I've kindly put below.

Sunday, 4 July 2010

Glastonbury Review Part 1

Later than intended due to family bereavement and time spent in Birmingham, here's the Keep Pop Loud Glastonbury round-up!


Although the festival was not due to start officially until the Friday, dotted around the site on Thursday (the second day of our stay, after arriving and pitching on Wednesday) were a select few low-key performances and events. Heading towards the Queen's Head stage for some bands in the afternoon the intention was to catch the triple-whammy of Two Door Cinema Club, Egyptian Hip-Hop and Chapel Club. The crowd for Two Door proved too much however, and one girlfriend fainting later, said band had to be abandoned and the entirety of Egyptian Hip-Hop's set was spent in the medical tent. By all accounts we didn't miss much, but were suitably convinced by what we could hear of TDCC to catch them the next time we could. Lucky for us then that they were due to open the Other Stage on the Saturday.

We arrived back at the Queen's Head as Chapel Club were about to launch into their second song, single 'Five Trees'. With razor sharp post-punk basslines, scratchy distorted guitars and a croon pitched somewhere between Morrissey and Editors' Tom Smith, the band played with passion and heaps of charisma. If they're not much higher up the bill next year after a huge selling album then I'll be very much surprised. Further plans were again thwarted for the Thursday by unbelievable queues for the cinema tent's showing of comedy film Four Lions. Luckily the sunset from the hill in The Park proved a stunning way to end the day.


Not being the raving type it was a comparatively early night and a Friday morning heading to the Pyramid Stage for it's opening act of the festival. Said act was a certain Rolf Harris, who although a complete novelty entertained thoroughly with his wobble-board and Aussie anthems. 'Tie Me Kangaroo Down Sport' was aired twice (once in an 'English version') and 'Two Little Boys' was clearly anticipated by the crowd. A cover of Led Zeppelin's 'Stairway To Heaven' didn't mistreat us either and with the unfathomably hot weather (seriously, it was baking hot all weekend) the group and I decided to stay put for Femi Kuti's Africana which was on next.

Suitably later on and at a relaxed pace we headed towards the Other Stage for punk legends The Stranglers. Unfortunately the band failed to connect with me, despite getting the rest of the crowd going and playing a set of classic songs. Wanting to fill up my water bottles and catch something on the West Holts stage I left as the band kicked from 'Peaches' to 'Golden Brown'. It was nearly enough to get me to stay. But not quite. The girlfriend and I were off to Mariachi El Bronx.

An early highlight came from this reformed punk-to-Mariachi band whose acoustic guitars and trumpets reflected perfectly the scorching heatwave. Matt Caughthran's voice, considering his hardcore punk background, proved to be utterly sublime on songs such as 'Slave Labour' and 'Litigation'. The band's self titled album is certainly riding high on the To Buy List right now and it was immensely pleasing to have caught the entire set.

As this was my first music festival at this point I had yet to get the hang of chopping and changing around stages in order to maximise the amount of acts that I could catch. Eager to see Parisians Phoenix I made my way back to the Other Stage soon after the Mariachi El Bronx set had concluded... only to catch the tail end of The Courteeners. The Courteeners are a band that I've disliked since the early days, but in catching 'You Overdid It, Doll', 'Not Nineteen Forever' and 'What Took You So Long?' I've had to have a rethink. Unlike The Stranglers, who I do like on record, The Courteeners managed to actually connect, sending the early afternoon crowd into a frenzy. It's this type of sing-along anthems that got me into guitar music all those years ago and caused me to contemplate weather Liam Fray (yes, the guy is a pillock - “Great song, that” he said after 'You Overdid It, Doll') and co got caught up in a backlash by myself against indie landfill and the NME's championing (see also Foals).

Putting that to the back of my mind for a time however, it was time for Phoenix who provided a really early benchmark for the festival that few other bands of the weekend met. Drawing mainly on last year's Wolfgang Amadeus Phoenix they opened with 'Lisztomania' and closed with '1901', finding time in-between to give us 'Long Distance Call' and a PHENOMENAL 'Lasso'

This should give you a rough idea.

Post-Phoenix we caught the D O double G. Yep, Snoop Dogg! Now whilst his music does repulse me for the most part it's impossible to deny the man's charm, plus he was on directly before Vampire Weekend and gave us 'Drop It Like It's Hot' within the last couple of songs (which to be fair is all we caught). It was a surprise to see that he'd drawn as big a crowd as he did, but then I expect that many people were there for the LOLZ. But that's OK, because straight afterwards Vampire Weekend gave us a fantastic hits set, playing great song after great song. They may only be two albums into their career but they've got one hell of a catalogue behind them already. 'A-Punk', 'Oxford Comma', 'Giving Up The Gun', 'Holiday', 'M79', 'Cousins', 'I Stand Corrected', 'Walcott' and a better-than-on-record 'One (Blake's Got A New Face)' all shimmered on the Pyramid stage.

To stay around for Dizzee Rascal or to explore a bit? Well, Mumford & Sons were on the John Peel Stage, so it was over to there for the first time. Sadly the tent was rammed beyond all comprehension, and hearing the band over the people next to us smoking and loudly talking about how they play Mumford & Sons album at dinner parties proved an impossibility. The band impressed enough to make their way to the To Buy List however, but we opted to leave and take a punt on the Special Guests at The Park.

Prompted in no small part by the fact that the merchandise stalls were selling Biffy Clyro t-shirts, we were hoping that said guests would be the Scottish three piece. Unfortunately introduced by the legendary Michael Evis the slot was filled by Thom Yorke. He played some slap bass (yeurgh!) and whined a bit to some of his solo material before we left and he was joined by Johnny Greenwood for some Radiohead songs. As blasphemous as I'm sure it is on the blogsphere, I preferred The Courteeners.

There was only one band that I could go and see to headline on Friday and that was Gorillaz. Now, you may have read some negative reviews of this set but I can tell you now, that these reviews are bullshit. The crowd in the Pyramid wanted hit after hit after hit. For some reason they went to see Gorillaz, who only have a handful of these songs. Anyone wiling to have put some work in and engaged their brain rather than their mouth would have realised that Gorillaz played the best set of the weekend. Each track sounding more brilliant that the last we were hit with a run in the middle of the set that bought out the big guns of special guests. Kano and Bashy on 'White Flag', De la Soul on 'Superfast Jellyfish', Shaun Ryder on 'DARE', Mark E. Smith on 'Glitter Freeze' and Lou Reed on 'Some Kind of Nature'. How Damon pulled all of these out of the bag I do not know, but in seeing Lou, Damon and The Clash's Mick Jones (Gorillaz permanent guitarist) all singing at the same time, I nearly wet myself with excitement. This is something U2 couldn't have provided, not matter what the broadsheets are saying.

Mos Def couldn't make 'Stylo' due to a bereavement, but it was still ruddy ace.

Seeing as Snoop failed to appear for Gorillaz near-opener 'Welcome To The World Of The Plastic Beach' it was a surprise to see the man enter for the encore, filling in Del tha Funkee Homosapien's shoes on a triumphant 'Clint Eastwood'. It's fair to say that a lot of the crowd were waiting for this moment anyway, and as a signing off it was utterly perfect. When the Glastonbury crowd became as picky as that as V Festival's I'll never know, but from this set onwards my opinion of the average Glasto punter was somewhat lower.

Thursday, 1 July 2010

Track of the Week: 2010 #26

Ray Davies - Days (Live at Glastonbury)

As promised not only is this weeks's Track of the Week very late, but it's also one of the many highlights of the Glastonbury Festival that I experienced over the weekend. Obviously I returned to civilisation from the festival on Monday, however I have only in the past few hours returned to my own place and internet connection after staying at my girlfriend's parents house recovering.

I fully intend to write up a full Glasto summery at some point soon, but in the meantime I'll jut mention this. Of all the sets that I witnessed over the weekend the best was Gorillaz headline slot on the Friday. However, not too far behind, in 'the legends slot' on Sunday afternoon was Ray Davies. The former Kinks frontman played a set consisting mainly of songs from said band in arrangements varying between acoustic, full on rock n roll and backed by a huge choir.

The performance was far from being purely celebratory however. It transpires that on the day that we all arrived at Glastonbury the original bassist for The Kinks, Peter Quaife passed away. This, and the dedication of many of the songs to him gave the performance a more emotional subtext. This Track of the Week is exemplary of this and a fantastic farewell song to those we lose. I also chose this song from his set as I found out just after the festival finished that my Grandad passed away on the Saturday afternoon. The goosebumps that I got at the time pale in comparison to those that I feel now just in remembering the lyrics to the song.