“ Kick off the festival season! „
When i got tickets for the saturday of this event i was over the moon and it did not let down!
This was the line up on the saturday i went to:
In New Music We Trust Stage
Cold War Kids
Groove Armada (DJ Set)
Simian Mobile Disco
I arrived early with my mates at around 2pm and went inside the park, it was simple enough to get to and there wasnt a humongous queue when we got there so we passed our tickets to the bouncers and in we went.
Once inside there was 3 arenas, basically the main tent (Main Stage), a smaller tent (In new music we trust stage) and an outdoor arena. We looked about the stalls which included merchandise, food and drink and plenty of toilets. The queues for the drinks were very large and took a while each time so we got a few drinks each and headed over to the Main Stage.
First up we had a listen to natasha bedingfield, not my kind of thing but to be fair to her she sang well and although she was up first people seemed to like her with people singing along to her well known stuff.
After her the fray and the twang came on, again not my cup of tea but they performed well and the crowds grew and the arena was finally full for when jamie t and the fratellis came on. Jamie T was ok, didnt know much of his stuff but then the fratellis came on and after a few drinks i headed inwards and got near the front, they played a lot of their debut album including 'chelsea dagger' 'whistle for the choir' and 'baby fratelli'
The crowd seemed to love it and it was a nice build up for the first headline act Razorlight.
Razorlight was probably the highlight of the event for me, the played plenty of well known songs, 'rip it up' 'someone else' and 'america'. The crowd really enjoyed this and they sounded really good in the tent, with the sound system doing them justice and it was a nice loud sound system aswell.
Finally in that tent i watched Kasabian, they were just awesome, playing tracks like 'empire' 'shoot the runner' 'clubfoot' and 'doberman'. They sounded superb live and didnt dissapoint, they played to the crowd and everyone went mad, the beer was fully flowing by now!
Finally i watched Annie Mac on the outdoor arena as i dont like the scissor sisters. Annie mac was awesome, she got the crowd bouncing as the sun came down, playing remixes of song 2 by blur and jump by house of pain. Then finally it was over......
Once we left the park we all had a smile on our faces after a superb day and it was free.
Thanks radio one!!!
Well can't believe this was over 2 years ago now! Every year for about the past 5 Radio 1 have put on a massive outdoor festival in May. They hold it in a different town or city every year, picked at random from what I can gather. In 2007 it was the turn of Preston. Being from Blackburn which is just down the road I was quite exctied. So I applied for tickets in the online ballot. However I was not one of the lucky ones. But, my best mate was! Twice in fact, he applied using his email and his dad's and both won! So we had 4 tickets. So me and my mate, and another couple all had tickets for the Saturday of the show.
I had no idea what to expect when I got there eraly afternoon but was very impressed with the scale of the event. I think there were about 25,000 people there all spread out over a large field. There were three stages, 'The Main Stage' the 'Introducing Stage' and the 'Dance' stage. The Dance one was outdoors and held little interest really as I'm not a fan of dance music. The other two stages were inside massive blue tents, that seemed to hold the sound really well.
As the show kicked off there were a few acts on the Main stage such as, The Fray and a few others. Nothing we really fancied. So we made our way over to the 'Introducing' stage whch was trying to highlight fresh new bands. The first one we saw was the 'Cold War Kids'. Have heard a few of there songs and was very impressed with them. We only made it to the edge of the big tent but just chilled there and listenen to this.
Next up were the 'Pigeon Detectives'. A band I knew very little about back then, think they had only just released there first song. But I was very impressed! The lead singer had so much energy and was bouncing all over the stage! At one point he got all tangled in the mike wire and nearly took his head off, but he still managed to carry on regardless. We were in the midle of the crowd for this and there was a great atmosphere.
After this my mates wanted to go and see if they could find a TV to watch the football, think it were FA cup final day or something. 'Biffy Clyro' were next up and they had never heard of them. I had! So I left them and went right down to the front to wait while they set up. The hour or so wait was worth it! They were brilliant! Even though I only new a few songs I was very impressed, they had everyone jumping along. Have really come to love this band because of seeing that performance that afternoon!
After Biffy I went and found my friends who had not found a TV, so they were just sat around in the sunshine. Next as we went into the evening we headed for the 'Main' stage. The Fratelies were next up and we all like them. We managed to get into a decent position and really enjoyed the show. Chelsea Dagger was the highlight with everyone singing along and bouncing up and down. A great show.
After this is was the turn of Kasabian. Now I must admit I was not really bothered about seeing them. Never really enjoyed their music and not a fan. But as we were wedged in the crowd I thought I might as well stay. I am glad I did. Have seen loads of live bands over the years, and nothing has ever come close to Kasabian! They blew me away! Even though not a fan, I did know alot of their songs. The lead singer was brilliant at getting the crowd involved, everyone was singing along and jumping up and down. Would give them 10/10 for there performance. It had everything. Was completely converted in the space of an hour, and have bought a few of there albums since! Would jump at the chance to see them again!
During the breaks between bands which were generally about 40 minutes, there was plenty to enjoy. Radio 1 presenters like Edith Bowman, Chris Moyles, Fern Cotton were always on hand to do there bit to keep the crowd happy. Vernon Kay was one of the highlights when he got everyone singing along to 'Don't look back in Anger', this was a brilliant moment I will never forget.
After this Razorlite were headlining. These were the big act of the day. I do like Razorlite as well so I was looking forward to this. However to be honest I was a little disapointed. I thought there performance was a little flat. Not much emotion, not much crowd involvement. Just a bit stale. I did enjoy listening but was certainly not moved the way I was listening to Kasabian.
After this the Scissor Sisters were last on, but by this time, standing in the same spot for about 4 hours, we had all had enough. So we made our way home.
I was disapointed to have missed the Gossip who were performing on the other stage while Kasabian were on, but was glad I had stayed put. I just had to go home and watch on TV as Beth Ditto dived/flopped into the crowd.
This was a great day out. The facilites were good, beer and food were not to expensive like they can be at large events. The toilets were not great, but this is just what you expect at a massive outdoor gig, later in the afternoon, the fence was just the place where you went if you were busting, including alot of women too!!
To say this event is free, I have to admit it's awesome. To go to these big festivals it can be very expensive. So for Radio 1 to put one on for free is fantastic. You do have to be lucky with the tickets but its certainly worth a try.
So if next year 'One Big Weekend' comes to a town near you. Do everything you can to get there and see it! You will not be dispointed!
The 'Radio One Big Weekend' events are held every year (for the past 5 or 6 years) in different cities and towns across the U.K. 2005 saw Sunderland, 2006 was Dundee, and 2007, as I'll be reviewing, was Preston's turn at staging the weekend pop rock extravaganza.
I applied for tickets by giving details to the BBC, before they gave out confirmation as to whether I'd won tickets or not (one pair) by email. The draw for selecting tickets was systematic, whereby around 90% of tickets allocated were given to people who lived in either Preston or its surrounding regions such as Blackpool and Burnley. I, being a Blackpool resident, managed to get myself 2 tickets for Sunday's proceedings.
Me and my friends who'd also won tickets arrived at the Moor Park where they event was being held for 11.30, expecting massive queues before the midday entry. This for whatever strange reason didn't happen. I think the gate we went to was at the side nobody was coming from (north). Anyway, 12 approached, with the sun shining down, and Reggie Yates started broadcasting on radio1 live from the gate we were all standing at. "Are you ready Prestoooooooooon!!" he yelled down his microphone, or something along those lines, before opening the gates to let us in. We immediately handed over our tickets for checks and absolutely bombed (ran fast) it to the closest tent. At the time we didn't know which tent was which, we just wanted to be near the front of one at first. After a while though we soon realized one tent was bigger than the other- and this big tent was obviously the main stage. The tent we'd found ourselves in was the 'In New Music We Trust Stage/Tent'. Both tents were huge by anyone's standards, equal to most small concert arenas. The floors in them were lined with a plastic of some sort so we didn't get grassy feet, and there were numerous entry/exit points along the sides of both of them, so nobody got crushed. Well, not at first anyway.
Even though I needed a pee, we decided to wait and hold our place at the front of the tent next to the stage in the INMWT (In New Music We Trust) ready for the Enemy who were opening the event (second to Calvin Harris in the Main Stage/Tent) at about half 1. The atmosphere was fantastic as more and more people filled up the tent excited about what was coming. The only downer to this was the many 12 year old girls who managed to get themselves so excited they kept running about and bumping into me- not good with drinks it your hand. Anyway, 1.30 arrived, and the boys from Coventry (the Enemy) arrived on stage after Edith Bowman's boring introduction with all the swagger you'd expect from a three piece rock band. There set was impressive to say the least. At the time (May) I only knew 'Away from Here' but I still got into a lot of the songs, and happily head banged away. Never the less, their biggest hit to date 'Away from...' rose down the roof more so than any other. Everyone knew the words and the whole tent was jumping up and down, with beer (and inevitably piss filled beer cups) going everywhere. I got a little crushed at the front but it was definitely worth the pain- an undeniably energetic start to the event.
With some time to kill between the next acts, about half an hour (this was the same for every act as they set up drums and what not) we explored around the fields around the tents. There were 20 or 30 food stalls, with everything from Caribbean themed barbecues to french style patisseries. People were sunbathing out on the grass with Just Jack booming out of the Main Stage tent, eating kebabs and generally having a good time. I'd had my pee by then and I felt great as well. On top of the numerous food stalls there was also a signing tent, which we avoided as it meant queuing for hours and missing out on the music. Also there was a tent called radio1 one life or something, which had people giving advice about life issues in it. God knows why anybody would want to come to this event to be told how to use contraceptives or be given drugs advice. Err, no thanks BBC. I'd rather you give the money used for that to Jonathan Ross.
Back to life, and back to reality, we headed away from our spot on the field in the sunshine towards the INMWT again. 'Get Cape Wear Cape Fly' was the artist to see- Strange name, stranger haircut. He came on stage with most people clueless as to whom/what they/he/she was. I'd heard the odd song and new he was a solo artist, where as most of the people around me thought Get. Cape... was a band. His performance turned out to be one of the highlights of the day, a perfect musical contrast to the Enemy before him. They were ballsy and loud, and aggressive, but Get. Cape. was somber and relaxing, great easy listening. The songs were catchy too, and most of the crowd; including myself, found ourselves singing along. Lovely stuff. I'd recommend you listen to 'Call me Ishmael' and 'I Spy' if you've never heard of him.
Afer Get.Cape we had a little breather before heading off to catch the last of Mark Ronson on the main stage. Well, it wasn't really Mark Ronson. It was the smiths, coldplay, kaiser chiefs, radiohead and maximo park. All the bands he's covered. As much as I like listening to his covers, his jazzy bluesy style didn't create much of an atmopshere, and never really got the crowd going. All Mark did was stand in the background playing base, and generally looking cool. Feeling a bit hungry we headed outside ono the fields again, where we found a stall selling dohnuts and cookies. We ate the cookies, we ate the dohnuts, all was good again. We then moved towards the 'Outdoor Arena' which we hadnt paid much attention too before. All day DJ sets had been taking place with the likes of Zane Lowe, Vernon Kay, and Dave Pearce blasting out dance anthems. A lot of people were dancing around on the grass but we couldn't be bothered to join in by then.
For the most part, the band I'd been looking forward to see the most was Klaxons. I'd been a big fan since early 2006 when they first came out with 'Atlantis to Interzone' and had bought their album and memorized most of the crazed space age lyrics (e.g. Madcap Medusa Flank my Foghorn .We'll change four seasons with our first born) . I knew they weren't great musicians, but the atmosphere at their gigs was said to be legendary. If we were to get a decent spot near the front of the INMWT tent for the Klaxons, I knew we had to get their early. This all got messed up when one of our friends decided to run off to bloody Mika in the main stage! Eventually we found her again in the crowd at the back with the camp curly haired weirdo belting out his finest. For what it was worth (10 minutes tops) Mika was actually really good. I hate to say it, but I found myself dancing to 'Grace Kelly' when I was there. It'd been on the radio non stop so I knew all the words unfortunately, and couldn't do anything else but sing along. I could be brown, I could be blue, I could be violet sky etc. Seriously later than what I planned!!! (I was angry by now) we arrived at the INMWT stage for Klaxons with 5 minutes before they were set to come on. The crowd was nearly all 15 year olds, and by god were they annoying. They'd all bought glow sticks to rave with on top of their already bought glow-necklaces, rings, hats, you name it, they all just glooowed. Nu-rave had never been so fluorescent. The 5 minutes of waiting eventually ended, and the band came out to a cry of high pitched squeals and yelps from the many young'ns in the crowd. The set was madness. They opened with 'The Bouncer' and the plain lyrics 'Your names not Dan, You're not coming in!'. Half of the time they messed up their timing and notes but they more than made up for it with the sheer noise they were creating. God knows what the band had been on though, the looked utterly 'wasted'. The crowd was rocking to every base line and singing to every word. We were sweaty and bruised but we enjoyed it alright, the band of the day in my opinion.
With a tough act to follow, Maximo Park entered the INMWT tent and stage shortly after the Klaxons rave had died. They had all the beats and sing-a-long anthems of Klaxons but finished them off with pop polish. They played their instruments near perfectly, and singer Paul Smith was buoyed by the reaction anthems like 'Apply some Pressure' and 'Our Velocity' were receiving off the crowd. With his greased back hair and robotic body movements he was the most individual front man of the day, narrowly beating later to come Kaiser Chief madman Ricky Wilson.
Feeling a little worse for wear after raving to both Klaxons and Maximo we marched off to buy a few drinks and eased our way to the back of the main stage where Stereophonics were performing, ready for Kaiser Chiefs last. We couldn't be bothered (long day, very achy) to work our way through the masses so stayed at the back and sang along to 'Dakota' and 'Maybe Tomorrow' amongst others. Fantastic songs from a band we never truly got to see. Soon after working our way to get near the front of the crowd after the phonics had finished, Chris Moyles came on to introduce the Kaisers. Without time to start talking the crowd starting yelling, "Fat B**tard", or something. Moylesy then replyed with "Its rich fat b**tard actually", which got everyone chuckling. By this point 10 000 plus people were in the tent, buzzing with excitement. It felt like everyone had been saving there energy for the Kaisers, desperate to dance and jump around one last time before the whole weekend finished. They didn't disappoint. First track 'Everyday I love you less and less' was a belting slice of riot encrusted pop with the usual helpings of 'waaaaaaaaaaa' and 'woaaaaaah' getting everyone bouncing. New song 'Heat dies down' was a first hear for most people so it didn't get the loudest of reactions. This was soon made up for by next track, the nation's favorite love/hate sing-a-long track, of course, 'Ruby'. When the first chorus arrived I felt thousands of bodies crush against my back as people edged closer in excitement. Beer cups were being tossed side to side with their remnants spilling over the unfortunate. Grown men were filling up the cups with liquid waste (pee) and sloshing the contents everywhere. Personally, I did get a little wet, but I didn't care by then. The atmosphere was magnificent! A few album tracks followed until the other national favorite Kaiser anthem, 'I predict a Riot' set the crowd going again. People were surfing side to side across the crowd being thrown up and down into the air as the people danced below them. It was awesome. Ricky Wilson climbed up the metal stage supports holding the lights, hanging himself from the top with microphone in hand, belching out his daily allowance of wooooooooooahs and waaaaas. I thought he was going to fall off for the most of it. The general feeling of euphoria continued right through the crowd until the end of the set with another storming anthem 'Oh my God'- the perfect end to a near perfect day.
We walked off covered in sweat, beer, pee and grass stains with limbs broken, hair disheveled and tired eyes. But we'd enjoyed it. From the girl band hand clap of pop prince Mika to the chewiness of my cookie, everything was sublime: a real tribute to Radio1 and the BBC.
If you've read my review and have got a taste for the one.big.weekend experience take a look at http://www.bbc.co.uk/radio1/bigweekend/ for more photos, blogs and stories. In May this year the event will be held somewhere else in the U.K. Fingers crossed, and the two tents could be popping up on a field near you very soon. Expect all of this years newcomers to perform. I'm thinking Kate Nash, The Wombats, Adele, and Take That with new recruit Robert Williams headlining. Have a little patience...its only 3 months away.
Complete '07 Line-Up
Saturday 19th May
Scissor Sisters - Razorlight - Kasabian - The Fratellis - The Fray - Natasha Bedingfield - The Twang - Jamie T
Groove Armada - Gossip - LCS Soundystem - CSS - Biffy Clyro - Cold War Kids - Pigeon Detectives
Sunday 20th May
Kaiser Chiefs - Stereophonics - The View - Mika - Rihanna- Mark Ronson - Just Jack - Calvin Harris
Bloc Party - Maximo Park - Klaxons - Dizzee Rascal - M.I.A - Get Cape Wear Cape Fly - The Enemy