I think the festival was sold out or nearly so (capacity: 35,000) as people who had bought tickets a week ago got tickets numbered 29 thousand and something. There was a great atmosphere, people were pretty cool and into their music, and a lot of people had made an effort to dress up, from candy raver hotpant outfits (oof) to Batman and Robin costumes to nurse outfits.
Anyway, In very quick summary, after a horrible coach journey finally got in about 5pm (an hour after the official start of the festival) and met up with the first of my mates. The next 14 hours are a little blurry in parts, but here are the sets I heard either whole or in part plus purely arbitrary "all-in scores" ie set + crowd vibe + own state of mind/sobriety:
Hed Kandi featuring Pav (from Pacha) live on drums & percussion (6/10)
Tim Deluxe (6/10)
Harry 'Choo-choo' Romero (7.5/10)
Gabriel & Dresden (7.5/10)
Trevor Rockliffe (7.5/10)
Mauro Picotto (7.5-8/10)
Adam Beyer (8-8.5/10)
Dave Clarke (8/10)
Carl Cox (8.5/10)
James Zabiela 7.5/10
Misstress Barbara (who knows, i was fuctup at this stage. Just kidding! 7.5/10)
There was a certain amount of WMC-style tough decision-making to be made, however I think my subjective scoring above shows we made some reasonable choices (at least for us). The worst was that Carl Cox and PvD were playing at the same time. Cox had the earlier-starting (and longer) set (12.30am-3am vs PvD's 1.30am-3.30am).
Never having seen Cox live before (the 1st time I'd been scheduled to see him spin was at Sonar in Barcelona a couple of months ago when he'd had to cancel, to Overseas's and my huge disappointment), and since i was hugely enjoying his set come the critical peel-off time of 1.30am, and since as a rule i prefer longer sets to shorter ones (which is not the way festivals are built, i know), I elected just this once to give PvD a miss. If his set was anything like the N1 set, I'm glad i did! The energy at Cox's set was fantastic, I expect partly because the festival was near Manchester, where Cox regularly graces the decks at Sankey's Soap, so he has a huge following in the North West of England.
I'll also give you a quick name check of who we had to pass up (please don't hate!): AvB, Tiesto, PvD, Ferry Corsten (all short 1.5-2 hr sets); Nick Fanciuilli, Roger Sanchez, Oakie; Fortier, S&D, Howells, Warren (actually we were trying to see Howells as he came on after Zabiela, according to the programme, but 30 minutes after Zabiela was due to have finished there was no sign of Howells and Zabiela was still spinning and nobody knew what the fuck was going on so we left to go to Fergie instead); Lawler, Morillo, Xpress 2, Jon Carter, Wally Lopez; Stantons, Plumps, UNKLE, Freeland, Hybrid.
Quick toon checks (more later, this just off the top of my head as my brain is still bleeding):
- Picotto dropping New Order - Blue Monday (original mix)
- Carl Cox dropping his own bootleg mix of 'Pontape' (Renato Cohen) with 'It Just Won't Do' (Tim Deluxe). Fergie also dropped this track, but somehow it just came across better at Cox's set, plus you know, it's Cox's mix so he has 'rights' you would say.
OK - that's it for now. Body entering all-systems shut-down mode ... I'll post more in this thread later when I wake up, and when i've remembered some more choons.
Vic - yes, 'I suck' - but ONLY if 'suck' in your dictionary means 'having a great time'
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