Live Music + Gig Reviews

Glade Festival 2009: Day 2 @ Matterley Bowl, Winchester

18 July 2009

Glade 2009:Day 1 |Day 2 | Day 3

The hour or two of sunlight on Saturday morning (never to return for the rest of the weekend, incidentally) was one incentive to Glade goers to emerge from tents into the fresh air.

Another was Beardyman, who unfortunately took the stage at 11:45am – a hideously early hour for any festival act, especially one at Glade. This bafflingly talented beatboxer (who once “posed as an Austrian climate change lecturer before breaking into his set”) was the first person to be crowned UK Beatbox Champion two years in a row, and despite the understandably small turnout he gave the show his all and thoroughly impressed the meagre audience, who were left happily rejuvenated after Friday night’s antics and eager for more music.
By the early evening a hungry crowd had gathered at the Glade stage for breakbeat superstars The Freestylers, and they weren’t to be disappointed. Since their debut album We Rock Hard in 1998, The Freestylers have dedicated themselves to making mass audiences stomp uncontrollably to their distinctive genre mash-ups, mixing a little dub, drum and bass, hip hop and electro into their set for good measure. Fans of hugely energetic, in-your-face dance music (probably those same people who found Booka Shade a little difficult to dance to the night before) were left grinning ear to ear – and trying to perform the difficult feat of dancing and holding onto their beer at the same time.

Later, achingly hip Berlin dance supergroup Moderat – the sum of the parts called Modeselektor and Apparat – brought eye-popping visuals to enhance what was for many the best act of the festival. Apparat’s dark, spaced-out electronica combined with the Thom Yorke-collaborating Modeselektor’s hip hop-influenced glitchy electro to great effect, and a half-cut crowd wobbled and waved with delight as the Berlin trio rolled out cutting edge dance music for the masses.

A visit to the decorative Rabbit Hole Bar was the perfect retreat from the loud Funktion One sound systems that deck out all the Glade stages – after all, ear drums need a rest once in a while. The furry pink and White (and now rather muddy) Rabbit minced about entertaining his guests, while The Mad Cows (last seen making Sienna Miller thrash about happily at Glastonbury) amused the crowd with some unique and imaginative covers. The most notable, Britney Spears‘ Hit Me Baby One More Time, was transformed into a knee-raising, punked-out barndance.

Over at the Solent Stage, a small tent hosted by students on the music courses at Southampton Solent University, was a worthy alternative to the bigger set-ups. Belying the slightly sneery ‘student DJ’ tag, many of them are already south coast legends-in-waiting, and there was no better way to end Saturday night than bouncing uncontrollably to some filthy drum and bass long after bedtime.

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