We eye up the Scotland's most notorious monster (no, not Nessie), T In The Park 2011.
Who, what, where, when and why?
T In The Park, known affectionately as “oor summer holidays” by Glaswegians and somewhat more cautiously as “Mr T” by any brave southern visitors, is Scotland’s answer to Glastonbury – in fact the UK’s only real contender to Glasto’s cast iron throne – and what it lacks in decades of nostalgia trips and hippies, it makes up for in crates of Buckfast and a simply unrivalled line-up in Britain.
A blot on the otherwise tranquil setting of rural Balado, near Kinross, the action at T takes place over three days from Friday, 8 June to Sunday, 10 June.
And why? Because Scotland’s entire stereotype is founded on drinking, dancing and dressing in expensive skirts while being friendlier than your uncle Joe at a wedding after two glasses of bubbly… and T is here to show the world they’ve got it spot on!
Is it better than Glastonbury?
After winning ‘Best Major Festival‘ twice on the bounce in 2005 and 2006 it’s a valid point to compare T to the godfather of world festivals but without all the hype, legend and almost Disney-like myth that surrounds Glasto, its monstrous site and 175,000 army, only a sunburnt jake drenched in Tennent’s could or would claim with authority that T is the UK’s premier festival.
However, there are a couple of facts which can’t be disputed and the first rabbit punch T lands in the bout with its elderly counterpart is the line-up – with its top billing so stupidly heavy the support cast needs to be in bold print to hold it up.
Two Glasto headliners (Coldplay and Beyonce) and a Reading top dog (The Strokes) are playing on JUST the Saturday… take a second to digest that.
Furthermore, Arctic Monkeys, Foo Fighters and Pulp are also in the mix, Leeds top billing My Chemical Romance don’t even get their own font they are so far down the bill and Blink182 were gracious enough to pull out of the race before the whole thing became a pantomime.
Not even a 17-hour U2 set can stand up against the might of T In The Park’s line-up in 2011.
And for those enjoy an unique edge to their atmosphere, T delivers a left hook in a way that the stoned Glasto, sleepy pop vibe of V and petulant Leeds/Reading twins can’t.
Like a car full of caged Jack Russell Terriers being allowed out, T’s masses bound and leap over Balado’s air strip for an entire weekend, excited by even the smallest of allowances or tricks and despite knocking folk over and letting a little piss out along the way, there’s always a loving lick on the face for fellow revellers.
Who is worth checking out?
Armed with an arsenal of hits so extensive that the world’s other festival headliners can only glance at their set list in envy, the Foos could top all three nights at T In The Park and not run out of fan favourites.
And with 2011’s best rock record ‘Wasting Light’ newly unleashed, Dave Grohl and his merry band are sure to deliver a varied set that will please new fans and hardcore supporters alike.
Having filled arenas and stadiums for more than a decade, the Foos’ star should be able to rise no higher, and yet rise it does. When greeted at Radio 1’s Big Weekend last month with a crowd of new faces seeing the rock giants for the first time, Grohl cheekily asked “Where the hell have you been for the last 16 years?”
Go see the planet’s greatest rock band in their pomp.
Odd Future Wolf Gang Kill Them All (OFWGKTA)
Cutting their own ingenious path to the top, OFWGKTA’s eruption into the public eye has been loud, controversial and anything but ordinary. In the last few months alone, the hip-hop collective have been involved in an LA arrest for disturbance of the peace, a Twitter fight with Chris Brown, a Boston signing session where riot police were called, a spat with Tegan And Sara over homophobic slurs and one member’s check-in to an all boys military academy for kids with depression and drug issues in Samoa.
However, the fact that controversy seems to follow the boys wherever they go is not what has tongues wagging in the hip-hop scene – it’s the quality of their mixtapes and albums. Their set will almost certainly be one of the talking points of the weekend.
Last time the American rockers graced a UK festival stage at Reading & Leeds, they embarrassed the headliners with a set that was never matched for excitement, laughs or all-out rock brilliance.
Their phenomenal show took in football keepie-ups, barrier running, crowd surfing, billboard climbing, trampolining and cross-dressing, with brilliant airings of ‘Hash Pipe’, ‘Island In The Sun’, ‘Say It Ain’t So’ and other pop-punk gems.
For closing classic ‘Buddy Holly’, Rivers ran into the crowd to sing from amid the masses, causing security concerns and utter carnage as fans flocked to join in. Do. Not. Miss!
The Naked And Famous
Worth watching if only for ‘Young Blood’, one of the best slices of shimmering indie-electro ever crafted.
The massive hit was in great company on debut album ‘Passive Me, Aggressive You’, a record rarely handed any less than four stars, critics around the globe throwing superlatives at New Zealand’s hottest new act.
As with every year, the lower end of the TITP bill is crawling with acts who are on the verge of mass popularity. Get there early to even so much as catch a glimpse of this lot.
The Vaccines they are not. NME won’t be working themselves into a frenzy or throwing around “next big thing” tags for this pipes and drum band any time soon, but they should be one of the live highlights of the T experience.
Looking like extras that have stumbled off the set of Braveheart, the tribal group are the answer for anyone wanting to catch something a bit different or add a flavour of traditional Scots to their weekend.
I want to hear more?!
Try out T In The Park Spotify playlist by clicking here.
Any chance of a ticket? Only from the boys with the cockney accents at the gates buying spares for £50 and kindly passing them on for £200.
Or viagogo, who guarantee each ticket bought from them or your money back. Click here to buy T In The Park tickets.