Neil Young: IW Festival 2009

I was among the droves leaving the festival four songs into Neil’s set. A great and very talented musician, completely unsuited to the time of night, with a chill wind blowing off the Medina making standing doing very little an unwelcome prospect. We needed something to get us moving, but not in the direction of the exits. Got back to base and TV to discover Young had finished early, leaving vacuous ITV2 presenters Fearne Cotton and Rufus Hound only a deserted festival ground to show instead of the intended live broadcast.

If I hadn’t been trying to co-ordinate with Jimjams about meeting after the festival to get her home, I would have gone to see the Charlatans. Instead I spent over an hour in a car park waiting for her to make what should have been a 20-minute walk back into town.

Chillin’

After the awful Scum I entered a blissfully chilled time caused in part by a pint of real ale at the Kashmir Cafe – the only truly drinkable beer of the festival – and exhaustion from two late nights. It was off to the main arena in time for The Script and the Pigeon Detectives, both of whom were enjoyed from a horizontal position in the baking heat of the afternoon. Alertness set in in time for Simple Minds and Pixies.

I last saw Pixies at Reading in, I think, 1990. It was long enough ago to forget the exact year, but their great album Bossanova (the only one in my collection) was a must buy as a result. The IW set seemed comparatively patchy, making Simple Minds (who preceded Pixies on stage) the high of the afternoon. It was all downhill from there.  Despite the promnsie in Sunday’s line-up, Saturday was the better day.

Scum: IW Festival 2009

Scum: IW Festival Big Top, Sunday 15 June 2009
Scum: IW Festival Big Top, Sunday 15 June 2009

I hope I’m open-minded musically, but the shutters came down for Scum. Very posy lead singer, probably a love child spawned by Peter Murphy and a new romantic, noted for dropping the microphone, dancing in his socks, and trying to electrocute himself by spraying water over the stage and himself, spending the rest of the act looking somewhat moist in the trouser department. Senseless activity of lead singer countered by the immobile keyboard duo.

Doom-laden noise. We all make mistakes, and mine was walking in to see this lot.

Poppy & The Jezebels: IW Festival 2009

Poppy & The Jezebels: IW Festival Big Top Sunday 14 June 2009
Poppy & The Jezebels: IW Festival Big Top Sunday 14 June 2009. Oooh a theremin
Poppy & The Jezebels: IW Festival Big Top Sunday 14 June 2009
Poppy & The Jezebels: IW Festival Big Top Sunday 14 June 2009

Bit static as a show – seemingly part musical group, part porcelain dolls – but enjoyable none the less. Closed with UFO (their biggest player on myspace), a number that probably uniquely at the festival used a theremin.

Hear them at http://www.myspace.com/poppyandthejezebels

The View: IW Festival 2009

The View: IW Festival Saturday 13 June 2009
The View: IW Festival Saturday 13 June 2009

Quotes from the crowd:

” They’re midgets!”

“And they look about 12 years old.”

“So, 12-year-old midgets.”

And then the lead singer spoke.

“They’re Scottish.” (Look, this year’s guide from the IW County Press hasn’t been very good at describing bands lower down the listings, though to be fair it did pass on the fact that they’re Scottish.)

“Scottish 12-year-old midgets.”

More indie guitar noise, veering towards recognisable tunes by the end of the set.