Oxegen 2006

I started writing this a few months back, I shall try pick up where I left off! The gig reviews won’t be complete without this one!!

So have just returned from the Emerald Isle and it really was a fantastic trip. We took in the sights, sounds, smells and of course as much liquor as the stomach can hold. We, consisting of Mr Flowers, The Docktor and Rachel, flew out in seemingly parallel flight from round the country to Dublin. Yet the ineptitude of one was to cause possibly the only hiccup of the long weekend break. Me and The Docktor walking through Customs gets a phone call from Mr Flowers, “Where are you?”, “Oh”, “Bugger” so the conversation goes. A man down we all trekked into Dublin and located our hostel which was right in the heart of Temple Bar. The hostel was excellent, clean, superbly situated and damn cheap (no complaints there).

First night was the only thing to do at 4 in the afternoon, hit the pubs of course! Drank Lots of Guinness, which is soo much better in Ireland, I wouldn’t touch the imported stuff here. Watched Portugal get dumped out of the world cup, shame oh shame and met a man from the Virgin Islands, Git. One thing with Temple Bar is the distinct lack of Irish, seems strange but we did fall straight into the tourist/stag weekend trap. Second and final day we embarked on a visionary and enlightening adventure and learned tonnes about Irish culture…at the Guinness Brewery and Jameson’s Distillery (pronounced “Jam-e-sons” don’t you know). Finished the day with a Comedy show which was hilarious.

Festival Ahoy! Weather was crap on day one and it brightened on day two. But hey, when there’s music in the air, who really gives a crap!

Oxegen Music Festival @ Punchestown Racecourse, Kildare, Ireland
8 & 9 July

Day One

Breaks C0-op – A good early claim for the most boring band of the weekend award!

V Formation – If I remember correctly they were quite good, but my memory is pants!

Spinto Band – First act to grab some attention. They were really good, quite an odd mix of guitar, duelling vocals, kazoo and double jointed windmilling. But somehow it made for a good live act.

Regina Spektor – This was one of my highlights of the weekend, a singer songwriter on the piano whose voice is astoundingly beautiful. Playing to a packed out tent clearly wasn’t what she is used to, made for all the more genuine performance. Every inch of the tent was filled with adorers and the rapturous applauses were all resolutely deserved.

We Are Scientists – Knew these guys and after the clearly rehearsed joke started the gig off on the right foot played all the album and had the crowd rockin’ and a rollin’.

Arctic Monkeys – Performance was about as overrated as they are. Sound was Awful, couldn’t bring myself to hear another minute of the appalling drivel, so dashed off to see…

Eels – The best stage show of the weekend by far. A Dancing/Karate/Workout demonstrating security guard who attacks helpless crowd members in the front row with whipped cream at every beck and call of E himself… you couldn’t make this up! E played mainly his back catalogue with a more harsh raw guitar noise, the new spin on classic tracks was brilliant.

Feeder – Played mainly tracks from the latest album, but still had the crowd in the palm for Buck Rogers and Just A Day! The tracks in between could have been anything!

The Strokes – Caught the end of the set and heard a few tracks, Reptilia being the best of the bunch.

The Who – The Rock Legends did not disapoint! This was a classic show, played every single one of their hits. Pete Townshend was on top axe slinging form, showing the guy from Spinto band exactly how you Windmill!! These guys have definitely got better with age and as veterans knows how to throw a good rock show. From My Generation to Won’t Get Fooled Again right through to Pinball Wizard, the crowd was firmly behind the band acting as a rather large backing group.

Kasabian – Had doubts on the Album, but this is one of the best live bands you will hear!! For once the critics weren’t over hyping! This band can only truly be appreciated after seeing them play live. The new material is sounding awesome and married with classics from the original offering this made for a dance/rock fest of epic proportions.

James Brown – Can still shake it for a old man!

Day 2

Wolfmother– AcDc meets Pink Floyd. An odd couple but the heavy riffs lights up those sober enough to roll out of the tents at this early time in the afternoon. A real presence on stage, the early time and the size of the crowd shows their popularity, and this performance will only gain them even more “Wolfmother’ettes”.

Mumm-ra – Who?

The Cribs – As if they spent yesterday night up drinking in the campsite all night with a alcoholic called Trev and didn’t bother to stop. Very shambolic and crazy, but then… that is The Cribs trademark. Good performance considering their sober dispositions, failed to grab me second time around.

The Kooks – Humongous crowd greeted the new kings of NME. Made for a great atmosphere and a good performance from this Brighton 4 piece.

The Zutons – Blew the Kooks from the water with a superb sing-along set. Again massive crowds, which added to the atmosphere already filled with Zutonic Pop Pleasures!

Clap Your Hands And Say Yeah! – Really was unsure about being here, but from the first chord I never looked back. More de de de der’s than a weezer concert, high energy, awesome danceable (well I men Bounceable) alternative rock.

Franz Ferdinand – Yet more Danceable rock, this time of the mainstream variety. I had forgotten why i liked them so much of late, until i saw them again! Once again loads of de de der’s during take me out and plenty of onstage and crowd energy made fro a good show.

Red Hot Chili Peppers – The Frusciante and Flea show was on top form, the guy singing in the middle could have been Trev from the campsite seeing as the crowd were pretty much doing his job for him. The duelling bass/guitar solo’s of the two F’s was immense as we all watched on in awe! Fantastic live show, well worthy of closing the festival with an almighty bang!

Top Act: The Who
Top Tracks: Us – Regina Spektor, Just A Day – Feeder, Mr E’s Beautiful Blues – Eels, Skin Of My Yellow Country Teeth – CYHASY, L.S.F. – Kasabian, Pinball Wizard – The Who

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