:: Monday, September 01, 2008 ::

Muddy Funsters

Hydro Connect Festival
Inverary, August 2008

Connect 08

The Connect Festival got a bit of a bad write up from some who attended. Can't say I entirely agree with them. Most of the problems they complain about were directly caused by the weather. 'Acts of God' are kind of hard to plan for. Twenty thousand people plus heavy rain plus fields equals mud. The security guys were all fine and polite from what I saw even when some of the more inebriated punters did not reciprocate. However the weather did kind of dominate, at least on Sunday. There was a one mile walk from the car park to the arena, with the arriving campers looking like refugees tramping slowly through the mud. To each side some had given up and sleeping bags, mattresses and the odd crate of beer lay abandoned in the ooze.

Drainage aside, there was a lot that Connect got right. The food was top notch as was the selection of bars whether you were in the mood for excellent local real ale, a vast selection from the whisky bar, champagne or mojitos. The idea of a 10p deposit on plastic cups must have done quite a bit for the litter situation as there were quite a few collecting them by the armful to fund their next pint. The event was supposed to be carbon neutral but just how the carbon was being offset doesn't seem to be spelled out anywhere.

The music however was consistently good. Best by a mile were Nick Cave's Grinderman. Without a doubt the best live set of the festival and the best I have seen him. From the pink suits to the horny songs Nick is still the king of the parliament of crows.


There were also great sets by Sigur Ros, The Young Knives, Santogold, Michael Franti (below), Sparks, Karl Bartos, Gutter Twins and Conor Oberst.

Michael Franti

Another review called Camera Obscura the worst dressed band at the festival which was a bit unkind. They did a swinging set with some great new songs including French Navy and Swans. This is a nice acoustic set from the festival at the bbc.

Glasvegas were a band who had the hype and the enthusiasm of the crowd. They had one good song, unfortunately they played it eight times or at least that's what it sounded like. A bit of a change of pace now and again might be good with their Jesus and Mary Chain schtick.

Saw some good new bands on the Your Sound stage including Moth and the Mirror and Anna Meldrum.

BBC Coverage

Skinny Blog coverage.

Here's my clip of Sigur Ros from the last night.

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