T in the Park is back with an extra day, extra people and lots of extra mud...
Turner appears a little pissed. Attempts to comment on the Rangers/Celtic division are instantly interupted by drummer Matt Helders administering a slam of the bass drum followed by a knowing finger to the lips. Not like the shy Sheffield singer to get into a sticky situation, but secretly we wish he would. '505' and 'A Certain Romance' finish the night in suitably stylish fashion. Breath-taking and an enticing taste of things to come.
Certain members of the crowd already look haggered but 'View From The Afternoon' and 'Brianstorm' whip everyone into a state of endless frenzy. Alex Turner taunts: "I don't know if you're match fit to be honest". The crowd boo. "You took the words right out of my mouth", he affirms – far more animated than Glasto.
As the crowd swells for those headlining Monkeys other festival goers make their way to the King Tut's tent for a retro indie party rekindling the spirit of the Friday night campsite of old. Blur, Stone Roses, Oasis – funtime Friday indeed!
First patronising quote – Kele Okereke: "I was walking round the site earlier and I thought 'Jesus, it's so muddy, no one's going to enjoy this'. But I was foolish, I forgot we were playing to the Scottish. Your will is indomitable!"
'Banquet' by Bloc Party has given T it's first anthem, the sun comes out, people hug and throw themselves anywhere, everything is cool. Then 'Blue Light' kicks in and it's a bit rubbish. There's something slightly up and down about Bloc Party but they bring the sun out and thousands flock their way. It's starting to heat up now.
Apparently The Coral play. It all glides elegantly, soothing and forgetable, like a baby wipe to the arm pit.
History is made. T In The Park kicks off on a Friday evening. Usually we would be pouring into the campsite singing our hearts out trying to outdo what lies ahead. Instead the job is done for us by Lily Allen of all people. There's something truly ironic about this cockney parent bludger opening with 'LDN' with the lines 'sun is in the sky', but at least it gives us hope. There's an atmosphere verging on the ridiculous and to be fair Lily understands, worrying that she's going to be electrocuted by lightning. "The only way to get through this waether is to get fucking pissed," she declares. Alright then.
It's going to be a wellies affair. Thanks God. I'd bought mine, shiny and maleable, in a bid to ward off the weather gremlins that get wet and go mental. But I can now justify things on the basis that it's money well spent. We just hope the rain and mud plight at T gets televised and publicised as well as Glastonbury. Why do those fair-weathed southerners always steal the headlines? We're in. That's all that matters. Mud I will wrestle you.
Early is a relative term. Things come early when you don't expect them, but when nearly 100,000 people are invited to come early there's nothing personal about it, and nothing happens early – apart from the weather. In years gone by, festival folk were consistently keen to get ton T before anyone else but when it's the first year the festival extends to a full three days – headlined by the Arctic fookin' Monkeys – well, everyone arrives on time, together. We're in traffic. Not moaning. Honest.