A Grim North

Musings from a northerner living in the deep south…

Posts Tagged ‘festival’

Southend Air Show

Posted by Alan on May 31, 2010

Today we headed out to the Southend Air Show. It was bloody hard work getting there – thanks to strategically placed engineering works by all operators, but I’ve just about got over that! Once there we saw lots of ugg boots, white shoes and a few planes. Here’s the best few of the pics.

4 planes in the sky

I wish I had a zoom lens right now

4 planes circle above the pier

Curve above the pier

Bi-plans and dark skies

Bi-plans and dark skies

Bi-Planes above the pier

Bi-Planes above the pier

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Catching Up

Posted by Alan on January 25, 2010

I really am falling behind with this blogging lark. There’s still stuff from Christmas that I want to write about. Oh well… it obviously can wait a little bit longer yet.

This Friday I had the afternoon off. Straight to the train and by 4.30 I was at the Winter Ales beer festival in Manchester. For a long time this was in the convenient New Century Hall, but apparently that needs refurbishing so is no longer available. Hence we meandered on the bus up to Miles Platting, just short of Collyhurst where Shameless is meant to be set.

Even at half 4 it was standing room only.

Winter Ales - Dan on the Floor

Winter Ales - Dan on the Floor, and just ½pt no. 1!

Some bloke (who later turned out to be deputy organiser!) wheeled out some extra chairs making a joke about how just because the venue was in Beirut, the young ‘uns on the floor should stop making it look so! Eventually we found two chairs at a table and gradually invaded…

Old Tom - Best Ale?

Old Tom - Best Ale? We disagree vehemently!

Beer, Here

Beer, drunk best in halfs or nips (1/3rd pint)

By the end of the evening someone had balloons. Just some random person.

Balloons + beer = comedy balloon shapes & animals.


Balloons can be made into many things. Or not.

This was also the first social trip out for the EOS 500D. I’m starting to like it a lot and I think I really need to get out into the City and shoot a few of the more beautiful parts. And maybe clock up how many S44 Stop and Search I can collect in an hour!

* * *

Winter ales wasn’t the first beery outing this week though. On Thursday, I took a trip out to Old St to check out a crawl for ELAC with Dickie. We had fun (sticking just to halves again – it was a school night after all). Found some places to drink and one not to drink.

The journey was: Old Fountain, Wenlock Arms, William IV, Eagle (“Hoxton”),  Bavarian Beerhouse, Artillary Arms. Each pub had it’s own merits – the Wenlock full of character (and characters), the William IV with pretty good Jazz but the Bavarian Beerhouse was a bit disappointment to say the least. £3 got you ‘0.3l’ of beer (of any sort) – though the glass was lined at ½pt (less than 0.3l!). If you felt flush you could spend £8.10 on a stein (1l). Whilst there were saw at least 4 smashed which is perhaps why they cost £8.10!

That’s enough for now… I will get back to older news (olds?) later in the week…

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Field Day 2009

Posted by Alan on August 1, 2009

Second festival of 2009 for me, Field Day in Victoria Park near Bow. It was a pretty good idea but a bit of a washout.

There were a few OK bands but sound quality wasn’t awesome at any of the stages. And it rained. Quite a lot. Never mind… could have been much worse. However, by MOGWAI they had fixed the sound problems on the main stage and the event bowed out with an awesome Glasgow Mega-Snake. Can’t be bothered with a proper review like… so here are some pictorial highlights 🙂

Final Fantasy

Final Fantasy

The Thing - Not My Thing!

The Thing - Not My Thing!

The Horrors

The Horrors

Rainbow over Bow

Rainbow over Bow




List of Bands

  • Wet Paint
  • Final Fantasy
  • Wood Pigeon
  • The Thing
  • The Horrors
  • Juana Molina
  • Mumford and Sons
  • Malcolm Middleton
  • Santigold
  • Four Tet
  • (DJ Skream – Positioning move!)
  • Mogwai

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Glastonbury 2009 – Sunday

Posted by Alan on July 9, 2009

Sunday was chilled out even more. There weren’t really any bands I was that bothered about, with the exception of Blur. And that wasn’t really a must go see but a nice to be able to say I’ve done in a few years time kind of want.

So… a very lazy start saw Status Quo on the pyramid stage. More morning cheese 🙂

From there I went up to the Acoustic Tent where amongst other bands, I saw a singer/songwriter called Kate Walsh who was excellent and Penguin Cafe Orchestra who made me angry. PCO have soundtracked a few adverts it would seem and that was pretty much all they played. They took around 30 minutes to soundcheck as well due to the sheer number of instruments. Rubbish!

Kate Walsh (Acoustic Tent)

Kate Walsh (Acoustic Tent)

To wake myself up again from the calm of the acoustic tent I headed off to the queens head. It was pretty empty – which was a shame – next up was The Capitol Years from Philidelphia, US. Quite good…

The Capitol Years (Queens Head)

The Capitol Years (Queens Head)

Next up – Madness. Who put on a really good show. But the best bit I thought was at the end the put loads of randoms on stage. Let some lad have the mic at the end – who gladly said “thank you and good night Glastonbury”. At which point the engineer cut the sound, leaving Suggs holding a dead mic. He didn’t look best pleased…

I heard Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds from the solidarity bar where I had bumped into a colleague.

Then finally Blur. Nice gig to come down from all the excitement of the past few days.

Damian Albarn (Pyramid Stage)

Damian Albarn (Pyramid Stage)

I didn’t watch the whole set due to nature calling mid-way through the set (4 pints in the solidarity bar… didn’t bode well for a 2 hour set). But this presented a great opportunity for chips!

So I finished off Blur with chips and curry from a burger  van. Marvellous!

A slightly blurry Blur on the Pyramid Stage

A slightly blurry Blur on the Pyramid Stage

And so that’s it Glasto 2009.

Bring on 2010!

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Glastonbury 2009 – Saturday

Posted by Alan on July 8, 2009

Saturday was a little bit less mental than Friday; I guess I was kinda worn out!

Starting in the speakers forum where I picked up some enviromental poetry whilst waiting for Mark Thomas. Very enjoyable – recommend checking out Danny Chivers.

Mark Thomas (Speakers Forum)

Mark Thomas (Speakers Forum)

After Mark I walked down to see Eagles of Death Metal via Rolf Harris. Except 60,000 people had had the same idea so getting so see any of Rolf wasn’t going to happen. Great time to use the cash point though! Eagles were good but not awesome. Perhaps it was the fact they’d played at 0215 the previous morning…

I then went up to the acoustic tent to chill out a little. You can sit down in there and it never seems to be too muddy no matter the weather outside.

After a food break and stocking up with some tinnies from the tent I headed over for a night of other stage headliners. Plan was to hang round the back for Maximo Park (having seen them in Glasto 07 anyway) then move forward through the crowd through Pendulum for Franz. By the time Pendulum came on I was already pretty close to the front…



The crowd was mental. Being quite fat and unfit I actually had to duck out after a few songs. Just too energetic for me… how rubbish is that eh? Oh well. Maybe next time I might be in better shape! So I headed off for the bar to avoid the unidentified flying liquids etc. Not too long after I could see people lighting fireworks and flares for the crowd.

Finally, Saturday headliner for me was Franz Ferdinand. I wasn’t expecting great things having heard previous live material. But it was pretty damn good, especially the extended version of Lucid Dreams (Tonight: Franz Ferdinand, 2009), featuring a lengthy electronic noise solo and the ending of Outsiders where all the band were playing a single drum kit!

Franz Ferdinand

Franz Ferdinand

To be continued…

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Glastonbury 2009 Overview

Posted by Alan on June 30, 2009

So was it worth all the mud? Hell yeah. Glastonbury was, as ever, an awesome experience. It did take me a while to drop out of real life and tune in… but that can only be expected now I’m a real person instead of student layabout.

Owing to the whole holiday thing, it’s going to take me ages to go through the photos and review stuff properly so here is just a list of what I saw.


  1. Liz Green (not Regina Specktor as I thought)
  2. Alessi’s Ark
  3. Golden Silvers


  1. Bjorn Again
  2. Sub-Universe
  3. The Slips
  4. Maura Kincaid
  5. The Mojo Fins
  6. City Stereo
  7. ? in orange chill n charge tent – had a single stealing all of the rifts from Echo beach due out August
  8. Fleet Foxes
  9. Lily Allen
  10. Little Boots
  11. Jack Peñate
  12. Layo and Bushwacker (Dance)
  13. Freeland (Live, Dance)
  14. Jamie T (begrudgingly, basically waiting for Doves…)
  15. Doves


  1. Live poetry at Speakers Forum (Danny Chivers, Claire Fawcett and Merrick)
  2. Mark Thomas
  3. I tried to get to Rolf Harris but 60,000 people showed up at a small stage. Fail.
  4. Eagles of Death Metal
  5. Hope and Social
  6. Bap Kennedy
  7. Lúnasa
  8. Maxïmo Park
  9. Pendulum
  10. Franz Ferdinand


  1. Status Quo
  2. Martin Healy Band (from the red flag bar – the queue took the entire set!)
  3. Kate Walsh
  4. Music of Penguin Cafe Orchestra
  5. The Capitol Years
  6. Madness
  7. Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds (from Solidarity Bar)
  8. Blur

And a quick few pix- was well worth taking a camera with a glass lens over a mobile!

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Glastonbury Revisited

Posted by Alan on June 21, 2009

On Tuesday, I’m off to Glastonbury festival. This is my second time – the first being in the gap between studenthood and paid employment.

So… I thought it might be nice to put up a quick reminder of last time to help get me in the mood 🙂

Glastonbury 2007…



  1. Modest Mouse
  2. Amy Winehouse
  3. Chas ‘N’ Dave
  4. Charlotte Hatherley
  5. The Coral
  6. Jack Peñate
  7. Arcade Fire
  8. Arctic Monkeys
  9. Björk (last track only… amazing light show!)
Polar Bears Mud Glorious Mud Arcade Fire


  1. Liz Green
  2. Three Daft Monkeys
  3. John Otway
  4. Nina Conti & Stan Stanley
  5. Simon Munnery
  6. Maxïmo Park
  7. Editors
  8. The Horrors
  9. Iggy Pop & The Stooges
  10. Dragonette
Simon Munnery Maximo Park Silent Disco


  1. Cold War Kids
  2. The Horrors (unintentional repetition!)
  3. Rumble Stripes
  4. The Young Knives
  5. Manic Street Preachers
  6. Kaiser Chiefs
  7. KT Tunstall
  8. Bellowhead
Manic Street Preachers Bellowhead

Panorama of Park

Wonder what I’ll see this time…

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