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June, 2005:

Isle Of White Festival Report

Fin 'Velma'Love reviews the Isle of Wight Festival
Fin “Velma” Love reports on the newly renamed Isle of Wight Festival straight off the plane from another of his jett set gigs in Mallorca:

Well I got into Bournemouth Airport from Palma at 12:10 & I was in a
car heading for the ferry at Lymington at 13:15….So one car journey,
a plane journey, another car journey home, then another car journey to
the ferry terminal, the ferry journey itself, followed by two separate
buses I arrived at the Nokia Isle Of White Festival. (Never Again !) -
Unfortunately the bus dropped us off at the wrong gate, so another 25
min walk followed by another 20 mins to get into the gate & a nice
girl from the Strongbow rooms was offering me a complimentary cold
half pint of cider.

The festival itself is split into two fields, the first holding the
main stage, Strongbow rooms, Ice cube dance tent & the usual suspects
in catering from Jap noodles to Tofu delights, plus of course stalls
selling crap that you would have difficulty selling in a car boot
sale.

So first stop the, the beer token outlet.. I mean why queue once for a
beer when you can do it two times, then tokens in hand the inevitable
bigger queue at the beer tent.
Anyway a beer in each hand, Charlie, Bovril & myself headed for the
main stage, just in time to see Idelwild come on. The main stage
itself reminded me a little of the main stage at V Chelmsford, except
you actually could walk up to the front without stepping on several
hands, feet & the use of a cattle prod. This was very refreshing,
loads of room & only around 15 rows from the stage. Idelwild
themselves were pretty good, its been a while since I have seen them &
they seem to have toned down their act a little. a fair bit of
material from their new album with an odd oldie thrown in. After some
debate on who was going to the bar for further refreshments (unlucky
Charlie), Supergrass were on. I like Supergrass, I admit I don’t
listen to a lot of their stuff at home, but having seen them 3 years
in the trot now, they never disappoint & this time was a set taken
straight off their greatest hits CD…great stuff with a new song off
their Fourth coming album which will inspire me to buy it when it
comes out.
Razorlight was next, but rather than stay at the main stage I decided
to have a roam about. I’m glad I did (Bovril & Charlie who stayed for
Razorlight thought that the set was too long & too padded out).
So via the strongbow rooms for a pint of cider I headed to the 2nd
field. This field was surprisingly big. I wondered past the dirt bike
hill challenge, a skateboard park, a new bands stage (can’t remember
who was playing), various stalls for children, the kids zone, not
nearly as big as Glasto, but big enougth for the little ones to do
some face painting etc & ended up in the Bollywood cocktail lounge.
I liked the Bollywood lounge, not just because they served some mean
cocktails but because it attracted an alternative set of customers.
Within 20 minutes I had seen people dressed in kaftans on stilts dance
to the theme tune of Starsky & Hutch, a Wookie, a Jedi knight & some
goths who looked as if they were on the dark side of a trip. Having
soaked in that atmosphere I headed back to the main stage for
Faithless. Faithless was OK, they were missing their 2nd lead singer who sang on
No Roots, so it was more back to the old Faithless. I enjoyed the set
& they played ‘Drifting away’ for my first time anyway (minus the
Opera intro, unfortunately).

So a late finnish & a punishing walk back to Newton for the last bus
back to the ferry. Would I go again, & this time with the family..Yes..there is far more
room there for kids, however I might be tempted to camp in another off
site camp site, rather than at the festival due to the lack of
facilities.

Velma xx