Tuesday, September 02, 2014

Stradbally Shenanigans

Ah God. Another Picnic over and I had forgotten just how utterly banjaxed I tend to be after it. I appear to have developed a weird neck-pain-and-headache-combo two days later and I'M JUST SO SLEEPY.

It was however one of the best Electric Picnics yet, thanks to a combination of deadly people to hang out with, an excellent line up, mostly dry weather and just somehow managing to get loads of acts in without any stress or disappointments. And here are some of the things we saw.

A very angry girl wearing a floral headband in the Oscar Wilde campsite furiously declaring "I just want some fucking chocolate. THAT'S ALL I WANT."

Booka Brass Band's cover of Talk Dirty To Me. A terrible song made awesome by a ton of brass and whittling the stupid lyrics down to the song title. Amazing fun.

A nice bit of camping in the Janis Joplin site (or the Jackie Jormp-Jomp site - hello 30 Rock fans!) with actual space between the tents and no screaming teenagers covered in marker and stickers and Native American headdresses. Just lovely.

Sitting in Body & Soul when I Want You Back by the Jackson 5 came on, resulting in me dancing like Baby Groot, while Billy played the part of Drax.

Crow Black Chicken in both the Electric Sideshow tent and Jimmy Lee's Juke Joint, who you'd swear are from some magic Louisiana blues swamp, rather than Clonmel.

Pie. Pie pie pie. I LOVE PIE.

Rubberbandits tearing the fucking roof off the Comedy Tent. Their set was without doubt one of my all-time festival highlights. The usual sit-down affair that the comedy tent tends to be was immediately thrown out the window, as we all clambered onto our feet to dance and sing/scream along to Spoiling Ivan, Dad's Best Friend and Fight Me At Mass. Their creepy Gabriel Byrne puppet made an appearance for Fellas and they even knocked out a crafty, hilarious and perfectly-aimed song about abortion (or to be more specific, a song about trying to avoid conversations about abortion). It sounds impossible, but if anyone can do it, Rubberbandits can. I wanted to jump onstage and shift the pair of them for being such utter fucking legends.

Realising that pretty much every fun party song from the last forty years was written by Nile Rodgers.

The joy that glowsticks bring to people. They're the best €2 you'll spend before heading to a festival and you get loads of them in a cardboard tube. After the weekend I now have a new system that ranks happiness on a scale of 1 to Aoife With Glowstick Bracelets.

This Side Up at the Salty Dog at three in the morning, bringing their Sligo Shtyle hip-hop to the Stradbally forest and tearing it the hell up. I particularly love their "These lads/Are feckin' class" refrain, especially when it's followed by "See you? You're feckin' class", which is something that I then proceeded to say to everyone for the rest of the night. Or morning, as it were.

Lily Allen putting on a hell of a show, with bloody gorgeous purple hair, great stage banter and rows of giant milk bottles.

My friend Gary being held aloft in the Comedy Tent by some big strong lads, including the Bear for Abandoman's last song, which was about Gary having a jetpack and meeting Bill Clinton.

Catching Kelis just in time for Milkshake.

Beck opening with Devil's Haircut and setting the pace for a fantastic, outrageously entertaining set that included a guitar solo ending with the guitarist being good-naturedly dragged offstage by the legs, Beck proclaiming that "There's nothing quite like a moist crowd" (the Sunday night drizzle had just kicked in) and the entire band's shuffling group hug exit from the stage.

All in all, it was a blast. EP 2015 had better bring it.


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