It is a festival after all and if you can’t get drunk and roll around giggling on the grass at a festival then where can you do that apart from your own living room carpet?
Well, for a start we couldn’t hide in amongst the gangs of marauding, drunken teenagers, loudly hollering swear words at the ineffectual security like we could last year. Really, we’d unfortunately camped in the wrong spot in 2011 and never went to sleep. This provoked a reaction similar to some apotheosis of teenage-hood-ness-ism’s basic premise of “I say good fellow I have sat my examinations as dictated by society and one is now letting down ones hair in the deified fashion of all youth the world over and getting ab-so-fucking-lutely bladdered. So fuck you!”
Now, amidst all the current cultural hatred of all things teen LOTF’s rather warm attitude of welcoming our younger brethren and indeed supplying them suitable artists that they consider cool enough to support was yet again another great plus in the exuberantly feathered cap of the LOTF team; whoever they may be.
I quietly supported the fact that instead of getting some more bloody headliners, yawn, or indeed paying local bands and DJ’s cash money they spent it all on security. At one point early on Thursday evening when I arrived there was more security than punters on site. They all had the determined look of a well oiled machine determined to stop the teens rioting. And they did. They were still mashed, drunk, wasted and staggering around the site like they owned the place but then again all security do that at festivals (ba-dunsch). I of course meant the young people but so were us, ahem, more mature responsible adults. It is a festival after all and if you can’t get drunk and roll around giggling on the grass at a festival then where can you do that apart from your own living room carpet?
Great that the meadows bar of last year was now the Lounge Originals Bar and mainly devoted to local DJ’s who had graced the dance floor of the Farmhouse and various guest DJ’s that had tickled ComfyPorns fancy or had played in that area in previous years; just a big old family meeting up at Christmas. All very nice of course and right next to a big bar and loads of outside seating too.
At approximately 1pm on Friday the rain stopped for 12 hours and the sun came out then went back in again but it stayed dry. Around 1am Friday night it started raining and rained all night. In the morning the sun came out for 12 hours. It was almost like we being blessed by the rain gods and given decent weather through the day. Sunday was a different story but 2 out 3 isn’t bad in anyone’s book.
We loved Friday daytime because we were DJing. They do say that it is not always about you but when you are DJing you are the centre of the world. Warren provided the great warm up set. It was still raining outside and the tent was packed at midday. Me and Si went on and sun came out and the tent emptied but rather than blame our mediocre DJ skills and poor choice of tunage it was the weathers fault. <Shakes fist at sun> “Damn you sunshine”. Deep as yer like-ness-isms continued with our favourite deep outfit from Folkestone - Sideways. How all 27 of them fitted on that stage with only one cowboy hat between them I will never know? Standout is Thom Norton whose look, to me, summed up the whole of that afternoons deepnesses; a quiet contentment as his head nodded in appreciation to the beats.
What else? Ooh yes, loving the new compactness of the site with even LOTF’s ‘Babylon crossroads’ area remaining relative mud lake free for much of the weekend due to the high ground and chalk composition of the festy site. Nice.
Grub wise I sought out Rob’s Farmhouse Kitchen and a dose of that old Steak and Ale vibe before dumping the GF (well, not really dumping more choosing not to go and catch the Wombats) and heading over to join the queues of middle aged drunk rockers at Al’s Hog Roast for a taste of pork. “I see you are no longer a vegetarian” says Nick ‘I’m not a violent revolutionary’ Dent to me as he spots my bulging sandwich and I spot his big fat green spliff. If fact it’s exactly the same thing he has said to me for the past 10 years whenever we meet at a wedding/BBQ/funeral etc and he sees me eating meat. It’s like we are stuck in this loop and because we used to be mates but don’t see each other anymore we go through this rigmarole of having exactly the same conversation every time we meet at a wedding/BBQ/funeral etc. OK, here it is; I used to be a vegetarian for 17 years but have not been one for 10 FUCKING YEARS since my ex-girl friend of 17 years, Nicky Wilson, decided to fuck off the Isle of Wight with some fucking twat without telling me!!!! Oh, she did tell, but in a little note left on our coffee table. Phew, got that off my chest.
For me, yeah, Emeli Sandé was a mildly interesting pop cultural phenomenon to observe in the flesh and it was a bit of a coup de grace for the LOTF team to bag but for me she was no headliner and her though provoking testaments to freedom, female individuality and emancipation left me somewhat emotional and philosophically bereft gasping for a bit of stand up comedy and some real analysis of what makes life tick. Which I didn’t get with Howard Marks. He’s a raconteur not a stand up. I love this geez; shambling on stage stoned off his tits, drawing you in slowly with his posh reminiscences of getting away with it - apart from that 10 year jail sentence in the States that gave him time to write his book - which he endlessly plugged. Fuck you coppers! Good on him. His Welsh lilt soporifically drawing you into his world of brushes with the law, his time in prison, hanging out with Mick Jagger and bringing gentle smiles to the old iffy boatrace of a packed tent indulging him somewhat. He’s a gem and a true folk hero in the evolution of a world that does not accept the solid evidence of a world that needs to embrace the positive points of a natural plant we could all benefit from. Ooh, whilst I’m here in this tent I want to talk about the next night and Terry Alderton who did a rare gem of a set too. A triumph of ad lib audience interaction and craziness. Loved him. He hated us. He was heckled to fuck and just rode with it.
Outside the theatre tent we bump in to Macca and his oven shelf on two bits of string. He made the GF hook the string round her two index fingers and put them in her ears. He got a stick and as the shelf swings in the air he played that old oven shelf like a harp. It’s a classic. “Ooh, lovely”, she says.
Get a text from Sideways saying they’ve blagged the decks in the VIP area tent behind the main stage so went over there for a bit to listen to some nice music which I found the atmosphere totally suitable not only to me or the general vibe of the area but also to the artists and crew chilling out having a beer before or after their gig and to sample a free bag of crisps from a stack of open boxes at the back of the tent. Now that’s what I call rock and roll.
Both Friday and Saturday night I went home as soon as everything was over. Nice. A shower, clean clothes, a shave, a fry up the next morning after a lovely sleep on my firm orthopaedic mattress and back to the festy refreshed around midday. I really truly love festivals that one can just go home from every time it rains.
Andy Murray lost on Sunday; what a waste of 3 hours of my life. Oh look, it’s started to rain; I’m off home because I’m scared of the mud; sorry Niles Rogers looks like I’m going to miss your set which I heard was great. Respect to the great man. From my sofa at home.