V Festival 2008, Chelmsford

The mister took me to V Festival at Chelmsford for my 21st birthday. We only went for the Saturday, primarily to see Muse (making this my fifth time)

We spent the day down at the main stage, enjoying the atmosphere and dipping in and out of the crowd for the bands we wanted to see.

We inadvertently saw the Futureheads a second time (they supported Muse at the Albert Hall) and I still wasn’t impressed although that song with the noises did get the whole place making the same silly noises, which was pretty entertaining.

We then made our way into the crowd. It was pretty early in the day so it wasn’t too busy just then. I was quite excited to see Alanis Morissette. I’ve never been that into her music, but the chance to see it live seemed like too good to miss.

Turns out I was right. Songs like Thankyou and Ironic were amazing. I didn’t realise quite how busy it had got either – whenever the camera panned back on the crowd I got quite a shock as we were quite near the front and there were just so many people! That many people singing in unision is awesome. Alanis was awesome, if not a little crazy 🙂

Following Alanis were the Lostprophets, who I also wanted to see. I wasn’t familiar with all their music, but it’s pretty easy to pick up for the most part. The crowd had a great energy for their set, really screaming from the rooftops. The lead singer got a good rapport going with the crowd, singling out a guy waving a giant, inflatable penis (heh), telling him to represent. They played one new song, and plugged their new album quite excessively (out 2009, dontchaknow?). I was quite impressed, for some reason I thought they might be a band who produced good sounding albums and then wouldn’t be able to cut it live. I was wrong.

Watch @ youtube

Can’t Catch Tomorrow & A Town Called Hypocrisy

We took a break for lunch, not really interested in Maximo Park or the Kooks, although we did mooch back into the crowd during the Kooks figuring when they left that we could make our way forward (it was necessary to be in front of the sound stage, otherwise there was a large stretch of crowd where you could barely hear anything) during the break between them and the Stereophonics, and then again in the gap before Muse.

The one thing I will comment on about the Kooks, is their crazy notion of making everyone sit down on a piss soaked, beer covered, rubbish strewn floor. Needless to say it didn’t work. We think he wanted everyone to jump up at the same time. No one did it. They threatened to not continue until everyone did. No one much seemed to care.

The Stereophonics were amazing. I had no idea what to expect, what they looked like, what the majority of their songs were (turns out it was a bunch I liked and had never bothered to find out what they were). I’m sure it’s been said, but the lead is sex on legs. Honestly. The sun was setting while they were playing and the camera got some great shots of him against the sun. It wasn’t until sometime during the week I found out his name was Kelly, and the whole idea of him was ruined 😉 Back to the night, they did a great set, all the classics, got the whole crowd singing, and performed a new song. I thoroughly enjoyed the set, and would definitely go and see them live again given the chance.

Watch @ youtube:

Dakota

And then, we just had to wait patiently for Muse. Or pretty impatiently. Standing up for 10 hours, being pushed and shoved, not drinking a lot to make staying in the crowd easier – we were exhausted, but not disappointed.

We were right by the sound stage for Muse, getting any further forward would have been impossible although it didn’t stop people from trying. We and some others tried to form some kind of impenetrable wall and just refuse to move, but it seems nothing stops the selfish people who didn’t bother to get in the crowd in time to see the show. Nevertheless, Muse did not disappoint, playing Dead Star which I’d never seen live, and it was totally awesome.  Saw Butterflies a fifth time and it just gets better and better.
They had lasers decorating the sky, and things reminiscent of the Wembley setup, which was cool. I was a little disappointed they didn’t live up to all the promises they made leading up to V (new songs, collaboration, space ships), but it was still worth the trip, and the standing up for much too long.

Watch @ youtube:

Knights of Cydonia
Hysteria
Supermassive Black Hole
Man with a Harmonica

We staggered back to the mister’s dad’s car, and were driven back to my little flat, ready for my birthday the next day, much in need of a shower and some sleep.