Live at Leeds Festival 2011 on Saturday, 27th August 2011
Saturday arrived and we all hoped the mud had dried out. It hadn't. If anything it had gotten worse overnight. Still, me and thousands of other people dragged ourselves out of our tents and went straight to the NME/Radio 1 Stage for what promised to be one of the bands of the weekend.
Pulled Apart by Horses opened Saturday with a very impressive homecoming set. The Leeds 4-piece played songs from their debut album and upcoming second album during this set, songs off each being received equally as well. Throughout their set the tent got busier and busier until it was nearly full - there was even people singing along to "Yeah Buddy" which is unusual for a band on so early in the day. At the end of their set all 4 members jumped into the crowd and were carried around the tent; there was a sense of accomplishment in the air as another Leeds band managed to break through and get recognised. Higher up and on a bigger stage next year is my prediction.
Next up was Does It Offend You, Yeah?, who were quite disappointing for me unfortunately. I liked them first time round in around 2007, but somehow in 4 years they have lost their stage presence and the ability to captivate a crowd as there was no singing along, even for the more famous songs .They seemed to lose the crowd completely with the new album songs, which is a shame for a band that clearly has such song writing talent based on their debut album. Hopefully they'll be back with a third album soon that will bring them back to the level they were once at.
Back to the Main Stage for The Offspring, a band that I grew up listening to, so this was either going to be a total disappointment or totally amazing. Luckily for me it was the latter, and the band managed to get everybody going on what was another grim weather day. Every song they played seemed to get everyone singing, although I imagine everybody was in the same boat as me: love The Offspring and sick of the mud. If you were there you may have seen my highly embarrassing dancing (we'll talk more about that on the Sunday review) and singing along out of tune. I loved this set and I can finally say I've seen The Offspring live, a lifelong goal accomplished.
Now I took a trip into one of the smaller tents, the Festival Republic Stage to be precise. I was there to see Digitalism, one of the greatest electronic bands of our generation, but also one of the least recognised unfortunately. However, everybody that was in that tent was in it for the same reason: to party and dance to German people playing synth and singing. Set closer "Pogo" got the biggest crowd response. There was not one person in that tent stood still, and it wasn't hard to see why as it was impossible not to move to such good dance music. Even if you are not a fan of dance music I urge you to go and see this band, regardless of age or music taste - you will have a great time.
The last band of the night was The Horrors and the tent was packed following their highest charting album to date (number 5 in the charts, pretty impressive for such a small band), full of people wanting to hear them play. Their oddly psychedelic take on indie is very impressive and they are all clearly very talented musicians. Frontman Faris Badwan didn't talk to the crowd much, which for most bands would be strange, but it somehow adds to The Horrors' coolness. They played songs from their 2 most recent albums to a tent full of dedicated fans, and it was a very good end to my Saturday, lots of drinking and bad dancing was involved in the tent, and I have to admit I was a part of it, and loved it!