T In The Park 2008: King Tut's Wah Wah Tent
All the indie action from the weekend
Joe O'Brien - 14 July 2008
It's down to Welsh rockers Los Campesinos! to kick start the biggest date on the Scottish calendar in the King Tuts Tent. In front of a reasonable crowd they launch into 'Death To Los Campesinos!' as if their lives depend on it. 'Frontwards' and 'International Tweecore' both receive a good reception as the tent gets off to a solid start.
There is only so much cheese one can take in a hot and sweaty tent on a Friday afternoon in Perthshire and Danish troupe Alphabeat don't even bring biscuits for the party. The annoyingly catchy chart hit 'Fascination' is a highlight, while '10,000 Nights' shows their knack for writing a good pop track.
Kids In Glass Houses
Lead singer Aled Phillips launches into an unexpected tirade against Scouting For Girls, calling the trio "delusional" for believing that 'Elvis Ain't Dead'. They then blow the King Tut's Tent wide open with a storming 35-minute set. The second Welsh band of the day keep the Celtic-spirit high thanks to 'Easy Tiger' and new single 'Saturday'.
Beginning as one of the most early anticipated performances of the weekend The Music draw a crowd of thousands to hear new material 'The Spike' and 'Strength In Numbers'. Their latest work goes down well, but those packed in the tent build up a sweat for old favourites 'Freedom Fighter' and 'Bleed From Within'.
Lead singer Barry Hyde was set to be married this weekend and this, his last show as a single man, looks like its going to be a memorable one. From the offset Hyde is enigmatic and energetic and current favourites 'Beginning Of The Twist' and 'Radio Heart' get huge cheers. But the infamous cover of Kate Bush's 'Hounds Of Love' is the highlight, which brings the tent to karaoke close – roll on Saturday.
Opening with the pounding 'Bats Over The Pacific Ocean' the trio try maintain the momentum left over from The Futureheads. A decent crowd have gathered for the Americans but there is a slight feeling of "Is that it?" as they complete their 25 minute set.
In Case Of Fire
Progressive caners In Case Of Fire receive a mixed reaction after the less than adrenaline pumping Jaguar Love. The tent need more than just the screaming vocals of lead Steven Robinson to get going, but they aren’t going to get it. 'Call to Arms' is the standout track, but nothing to write home about.
When the opening chords of 'Sun Goes Down' reverberate around the tarpaulin the King Tut's crowd goes wild. The track is Jordan's gem and the song that outshines all of his other work, though 'Place In My Heart' is pleasant enough.
Could it be that Mr Ellis and the rest of the T organisers had maybe underestimated the sheer pulling power of The Stranglers? It looks that way as the tent bulges from the seams trying to hold in the hoards that have gathered the see the aging punks. 'Golden Brown' receives the best reaction but a surprise cover of The Kinks' 'You Really Got Me' proves just as popular.
T In The Park is old hat for Alabama 3, with the band gracing the Scottish stage many occasions before. There are no new tricks this time around as 'Monday Don't Mean Anything To Me' and 'Amos Moses' stand out as highlights.
Sons and Daughters
Sons and Daughters are their usual glamorous selves as they crash onto the stage and commandeer the crowd. Singer Adele Bethel - sporting a 60s look complete with short dress and over-the-top jewellery - leaves no-one in the tent unaware of her presence as she bounds across the stage, blasting out her trademark shrieks and heavily-accented vocals. They serve up their new tracks with the same gusto as classics like 'Dance Me In', the Glaswegians mark their territory as one of the best Scottish bands around and one of the must-see bands of T in the Park.
How one man can have so much energy and still be pumped enough to walk around with a constant smile on his face? You either love him or hate him but Jack Penate does what he does very well. Indie-pleasers 'Have I Been A Fool' and 'Torn On The Platform' receive the most love from the Saturday evening crowd.
Reverend and the Makers
The outspoken Reverend and his band of merry Makers draw a decent crowd as they set up their set with staple track 'Heavyweight Champion Of The World'. The song tees the set up for greatness, but afterwards the band fail to deliver with catchy cockney hit 'He Said He Loved Me' saving face.
It's impossible to not to have a good time watching The Pogues. Shane MacGowen is as entertaining as he is drunk, as the Irish folk stars deliver a resounding set filled with good feeling, great music and a belly-full of beer. They open with 'Streams Of Whiskey' and end, predictably, with 'Fairytale Of New York'. The man may not be beautiful, but his music certainly is.
It wouldn't possibly be an Ian Brown gig if he didn't throw a strop and bang on cue the ex-Stone Rose bellows at the crowd for throwing glo-sticks at him. "Do you like the Stone Roses, yeah?" he asks before performing an immense version of 'Waterfall'. Newer tracks 'Illegal Attacks' and 'Sister Rose' are complimented nicely by old favourites 'F.E.A.R.' and 'Golden Gaze' – superb.
A pleasantly surprising set from London-based Royworld who today sound remarkably like Elbow. 'Brakes' and 'Man In The Machine' stand out for what turns out to be good start to day three.
Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly
Get Cape. Wear Cape. Fly AKA Sam Duckworth should have took off following the release of his first single 'Find The Time', but for some the talented singer songwriter fell short of global. If this is finally to be his year then his TITP performance is certainly a good marker. 'Find The Time' is met with much love from his fans and track 'Postcards From Catalunya' will ensure he makes a few new ones on the way.
Southampton quartet The Delays are one of those bands that are perfect filler when you're waiting for something else – in this case The Ting Tings. They produce decent enough showing that's topped off with the sweet sound of 'Valentine', but as they finish you get the sense that the crowd are rubbing their hands with intense expectancy for Tut's next offering rather than in appreciation of what they've just seen.
The Ting Tings
It's amazing to think that The Ting Tings aren't above the hit-and-miss British Sea Power on the bill, but one tings for certain - they'll have a much higher slot next year if their rapid rise continues. The hits were obvious but 'That's Not My Name', 'Great DJ' and new single 'Shut Up And Let Me Go' rounded off a great show.
British Sea Power
Opening with 'No Lucifer', British Sea Power start as if they've got a point to prove. 'Lights Out For Dark' is luscious and 'Favours In The Beetroot Field' feels intense, but it feels like BSP should offer a whole lot more after their years on the circuit.
Vampire Weekend are arguably the best breakthrough band of the year and if this set is anything to go by they certainly look like it. Opening with 'Mansard Roof' the New Yorkers' go from strength to strength. 'Cape Cod Kwassa Kwassa', and 'Oxford Comma' are both superb before the outstanding 'A-Punk' leaves the crowd wanting more.
Echo and the Bunnymen
Festival veterans Echo and the Bunnymen are keen to keep the momentum going as the tent heads for the headliners. Ian McCulloch and Co delight the crowd with treats from their new album 'The Fountain' including new single 'I Think I Need It Too'. But the best reactions are for 'The Back Of Love', 'The Cutter' and the classic 'Nothing Lasts Forever'.
With an abundance of energy from start to finish Pendulum rip up the tent that's only just recovered from Hadouken! and Klaxons' aural assaults last year. Along with Rob Swire the band batter the crowd with techno-style tracks like 'Showdown' and big hit 'Propane Nightmares' - a tireless performance packed full with adrenaline.
The Charlatans have been around so long, they could turn up and rock the tent with their eyes closed. They go about their business in the usual manner with old classics like 'Tellin' Stories', 'North Country Boy' and 'Oh Vanity' all getting an airing before lead singer Tim Burgess' new offering 'The Misbegotten' is delivered in style to an appreciative crowd.
Seemingly timeless rocker Bobby Gillespie brings the King Tut's Tent to a masterful close with a superb set in front of his home fans. "Do you want some rock and roll?" asks Gillespie, "Well you're in the right place," – it's something we already know. 'Dogs' and 'Rocks' follow quickly before Gillespie and Mani strut through 'Jailbird' and 'Exterminator'. 'Moving On Up' is a treat and 'Swastika Eyes' bring T 2008 to a sweaty and raucous end.