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V Festival 2005 - JJB/Puma Arena

24 August 2005

The dark, broody aura of the JJB/Arena is the perfect venue to get lost in, boasting alternative acts from a variety of genres and, er, Natasha Beddingfield.

A last minute change in the line-up means Bristol based 4-piece Bronze Age Fox have stepped in to open up on the JJB/Puma Stage. Not such an easy job, and their blend of funky pop-electronica teamed with Justin Hawkins inspired vocals is a curious combination. They are however a band that actually give you a bit of hope in the UK music scene. A job well done.

K-OS struts on stage and instantly you know he’s not your average hip-hop artist. His grooves are wickedly infectious and sound instantaneously different from anything else around at the moment. Whilst still retaining fundamentals of early hip-hop, this is a sound that’s completely unique.

Bodyrockers on the other hand raise the temperature by a million degrees. Although all their songs sound exactly the same, the nagging melodies, dance beats to nod to and the addictively catchy ‘I Like The Way’ bring a much needed bit of gusto to the proceedings.

At first glance, Estelle looks like someone who has just wandered in off the field, but she is a girl with something to say. Looking like she is born to be on stage, these are powerful, perfectly executed songs from da street.

Ahh. Now it feels like summer. The sun is out, the beer is warm and flat and Jem has just sang ‘Just A Ride’ which has to be one of the catchiest summer tunes clogging the airwaves just now. After Estelle’s lyrics to think about, this songstress from Wales provides total escapism on a glorious summer day.

From one pop princess to another..but god good Natasha Bedingfield has some lungs on her. She belts out hit after hit and there is genuine passion in her voice and she sounds infinitely better live than she does on record. Granted, its textbook pop but you can’t help the fact that these songs wont leave your head.

Goldfrapp are a band with a sexy sound. Writhing around in black, Alison Goldfrapp’s breathless words, accompanied by swirling beats and heady keyboards are getting everyone ‘in the mood’. Wrapping up an intense set with ‘Strict Machine’ and recent single ‘Ooh La La’, everywhere you look, people are indulging in a spot of bump n grind. Nice.

How do you follow that performance? With Dizzee Rascal, that’s how. Better than any cold shower he’s enough to totally ruin any atmosphere there was. It’s not even something you can call music. It’s just random mumbling and the occasional shout which results in a minimal crowd and minimal sparks from the increasingly annoying youngster from London. The whole set is pretty devoid of anything resembling charisma.

The Roots however show us how hip-hop should be done. Focused and intense they also have nostalgia value incorporating 80’s style rap with precision that leaves you stunned. Genius.

Ian Brown is an old hand at this sort of shizz. His own solo material is still sounding pretty fresh but you know that most of this crowd are really here to hear the old stuff. He duly obliges, with biggest cheers going to a spine tingling ‘She Bangs The Drum’ whilst set closer ‘I Wanna Be Adored’ is nothing short of exquisite.



- Click here to discuss this on the Festival Forums!
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Thanks to: Jane Hawkes

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MORE REVIEWS

Our Dream Summer Winner's V Festival Blog

V Festival 2006

V Festival 2006 - JJB/Puma Arena

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V Festival 2006 - Bacardi B-Live

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The Strongbow Rooms @ V Staffs

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JJB and Music Choice - Saturday (Staffs)

V Festival 2003: Staffordshire

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V Festival 2003: Chelmsford

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V2002 Staffordshire - Sunday Review

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V2001 Chelmsford Review - Sunday

V2001 Chelmsford

V2001 Chelmsford Review - Saturday

V2001 Review - Introduction

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