Electric Picnic Day 1
All the news, reviews and updates from the Picnic
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Good morning and welcome to our official 2014 Electric Picnic live-blog. Sorcha Pollak here starting things off on day 1 of the festival.
I'll be joined this afternoon by Hugh Linehan (@hlinehan) who is already down at Stradbally digging up all the latest news and gossip from the festival site.
We're here today to fill you in on weather, traffic updates and festival stage times as well as tips and advice on all the best places to visit at this year's Electric Picnic.
If you have any interesting/funny/whacky tweets or instagrams please get in touch at @SorchaPollak on Twitter or Sorchina on instagram.
We'll also be joined by Niamh Guckian and Danial O'Connor from our video team who will be contributing videos and pics over the weekend.
And so, now the rain has finally stopped, let's get going!
Alison Healy has all the latest news on weather for the weekend, advising festival goers to bring both wellies and sunscreen (good old reliable Irish summer).
Sunday will be the best day of the weekend with temperatures reaching 20 degrees but today is expected to be breezy with occasional showers of rain.
Met Éireann forecaster Siobhán Ryan said top temperatures would reach about 17 degrees today.
“Prepare for rain, mostly on- off drizzle,” she said.
Tonight will be murky and damp “and there’s a bit of a breeze today so obviously people would need to tie down their tents.
Today is probably the breeziest day of the three.”
Tomorrow will have a few passing showers, most likely during the morning, but sunshine is expected to break through in the late afternoon and evening. The sunscreen may be called into action on Sunday as the day is expected to kick off with bright sunshine and temperatures should hit 20 degrees in the morning and early afternoon.
“Possibly by evening time you are going to see a little bit more cloud and there’s a chance of some patchy rain or drizzle by early nightfall but it shouldn’t amount to too much though,” Ms Ryan said.
You heard her - murky and damp leading to scorcher on Sunday. Good ol four seasons for the Picnic, would we have it any other way?
We’ve had quite an EP-related drama here this morning at the Irish Times. Journalist Rachel Collins set off this morning all packed and ready to cover the festival at Stradbally. However, she arrived at EP only to discover her bag had been taken and replaced with another bag belonging to a lady called Yumiko.
— Rachel Collins (@OrrCollins) August 29, 2014
Thanks to the wonders of social media Rachel has tracked down the owner of the bag and is en route to Dublin airport for the swap. Go raibh maith agat Aer Lingus for all the help, we couldn’t have one of our journalists with Yumiko’s belongings at the picnic!
Now for some traffic advice for everyone heading off this afternoon/this evening. Well done to those of you who set off early this morning and missed the traffic, we’re not bitter...
Campsites at the Stradbally Estate opened at 9am this morning and will close at 1pm on Monday 1st September.
Stradbally Estate is located off Cork Rd, Portlaoise. Read on for AARoadwatch details on the best route to take when travelling by car to the festival from different spots around the country.
M7 - Southbound
Event traffic will exit the M7 at Ballydavis Interchange (Exit 16), cross to new Carlow Rd (R425) and on to Bloomfield R/A. All event traffic (except coaches, mini buses, camper vans and taxis) will continue straight at Bloomfield (R425) and on to Sheffield (R426), Lamberton Junction and Money Cross. Turn left at either Lamberton or Money Cross as directed by Garda on point duty and on to designated parking areas. Entry at Entrance C, for car park C and at Entrance B, for car park B.
N7 - Limerick
Event traffic will continue on M7 for Portlaoise at J17, Togher. Event traffic will proceed on Abbeyleix Rd to Meelick jct. Turn right onto Meelick Rd, right to Timahoe Rd and right to Sheffield where it will join event traffic from Bloomfield. Any coaches or camper vans on this route will continue on Money Cross, straight through junction and turn left at Timahoe Village and on to Gate 3 for entry.
Event traffic will exit motorway at J3 (M8) (Manor Stone Exit) and onto Ballacolla and Abbeyleix. Event traffic will travel through Ballacolla to Abbeyleix and turn left on the Main St then turn right to Ballyroan. Any coaches and campervans will turn right at Money Cross to Timahoe and then left onto Gate 3 for entry. All other event traffic will continue straight at Money Cross onto designated parking.
For those of you travelling by bus:
DUBLIN: On Friday, services will depart from Custom House Quay every 30 minutes from 8:30am until 6pm. On Saturday and Sunday, services will depart from the city centre hourly from 10am to 1pm. For those coming returning from Stradbally on Saturday night, services will depart hourly from 11pm to 1am. On Sunday, return services will operate every 30 minutes from 9pm to 2am.
CORK: On Friday, special buses will depart from 8am at Parnell Place. These will service MacCurtain St in Fermoy at 8:35am, The Square in Mitchelstown at 8:50am, Castle St in Cahir at 9:20am, Main St in Cashel at 9:40am. The service is scheduled to arrive at Stradbally Hall at 10:45am. The return service will depart at midday on Monday 1st September, arriving in Cashel at 1:45pm, Cahir at 1:05pm, Mitchelstown at 1:35pm, Fermoy at 1:50pm and Parnell Place at 2:25pm.
GALWAY: Festival-goers coming from the west will also be facilitated on a special service. This service will leave Eyre Square at midday on Friday and is due to arrive in Stradbally at 3pm. A return service will depart from Stradbally Hall at 10am Monday and is due back in Galway at 1pm.
I’ve tracked down Rachel Collins to find out exactly what happened on her EP bag adventure this morning. It turns out she isn’t actually going to Stradbally till tonight but had brought her packed-bag to work ready for the weekend.
She arrived at O’Connell street bright and early for work this morning and grabbed the last bag from the bus.
“I got off the bus, it was the last bag there and just threw it on my back.” She says quite some time passed before she realised the bag didn’t belong to her.
Standing in pouring rain Rachel opened the front pocket where she discovered a postcard signed by someone called Yumiko. She quickly tweeted to Electric Picnic and Dublin Bus in the hopes that somehow the owner would see the message. Then she discovered documentation from DCU in the bag.
“I rang DCU, she was doing a language course in DCU, and they rang back and saying she’d left the country.”
“She had graduated yesterday and as far as they were concerned she was on her way home.”
Rachel discovered the owner of the bag was French and quickly contacted Aer Lingus who somehow successfully located the young lady.
Fortunately she had taken the bag of an extrmeley organised traveller who had arrived at the airport hours before her scheduled departure.
So, all’s well that ends well. Yomiko has her bag and will arrive home this afternoon proudly holding her DCU English language certificate, while Rachel is back on track with all necessary supplies for her Electric Picnic weekend ready and waiting in her trusty backpack.
Back to AA Roadwatch travel advice for those heading to the picnic. There are a number of private bus companies providing services for the weekend.
Martley's Shuttle Bus
Friday: Portlaoise Train Station - Electric Picnic
7:30am - 10:30pm (services every 30 minutes)
Friday: Electric Picnic - Portlaoise Train Station
10am - 3am (services every hour)
Saturday: Portlaoise Train Station - Electric Picnic
7:30am - 10pm (services every 30 minutes)
Saturday: Electric Picnic - Portlaoise Train Station
9am - 3am (services every hour)
Sunday: Portlaoise Train Station - Electric Picnic
7:30am – 10pm (services every 30 minutes)
Sunday: Electric Picnic - Portlaoise Train Station
7am - 3am (services every hour)
Monday: Electric Picnic - Portlaoise Train Station
6am - 3pm (every 30 minutes)
Monday: Electric Picnic - Dublin (Custom House Quay)
Depart Electric Picnic at 2am, arrive in Dublin 3.40am
Depart Electric Picnic at 12pm, arrive in Dublin 1.40pm
Marathon Travel Services
Friday: Dublin – Electric Picnic
Service starts at 9am and departs every hour until 6pm.
Saturday: Dublin - Electric Picnic
Departs 10am only
Sunday: Dublin - Electric Picnic
Departs 10am, 11am and 12pm
Sunday/ Monday: Electric Picnic – Dublin
Departing hourly from 8pm until 1pm on Monday 1st September
Limerick – Nenagh – Roscrea
Cork – Mitchelstown – Cahir
Tipperary – Cashel – Portlaoise
Ennis – Loughrea – Kilbeggan
Belfast – Lisburn – Banbridge – Newry – Dundalk
Yesterday our Arts Editor Laurence Mackin released the final stage times for Electric Picnic.
Here’s the official line-up for the Little Big Tent and Cosby Stage.
Little Big Tent
12.15am-01.15am: Krystal Klear
8.30pm-9.15pm: FKA twigs
7.15pm-8pm: John Wizards
4.45pm-5.30pm: Sleep Thieves
2.30pm-3pm: The Academic
1.30pm-2pm: Buffalo Sunn
11pm-12am: Shit Robot
8.30pm-9.30pm: Duke Dumont
7.15pm-8.15pm: Sampha (DJ)
4.45pm-5.30pm: Glass Animals
11pm-12am: BP Fallon
9.30pm-10.30pm: The Blades
8pm-9pm: White Denim
6.45pm-7.30pm: The Orwells
3.45pm-4.30pm: Benjamin Booker
1pm-1.45pm: Wyvern Lingo
9.30pm-10.30pm: The Horrors
7pm-7.45pm: Wolf Alice
4.30pm-5.15pm: Unknown Mortal Orchestra
3.15pm-4pm: The Districts
2.15-2.45pm: Vancouver Sleep Clinic
1.15pm-1.45pm: The Whereabouts
12.15pm-12.45pm: Matt McGinn
12:59Who are you looking forward to seeing this weekend? Personally I cannot wait for St Vincent.
13:00Latest traffic news from Hugh Linehan who is still travelling down to the festival.
2km tailback for Exit 16 off the M7. But at least it's moving, slowly. Light rain still falling.
Here’s the Body and Soul stage line-up for the weekend
02.45 — 03.30 Oum Shatt
01.30 — 02.15 Young Fathers
00.00 — 01.00 tUnE-yArDs
22.30 — 23.30 Lau
21.15 — 22.00 Girl Band
20.00 — 20.45 The Altered Hours
19.00 — 19.30 Sounds of System Breakdown
18.00 — 18.30 The Viking Project
17.00 — 17.30 Sleep Thieves
16.00 — 16.30 The Careers
03.00 — 04.00 Donal Dineen
01.45 — 02.30 Moodoïd
00.30 — 01.15 Kate Boy
23.15 — 00.00 Linkoban
22.00 — 22.45 Special Guests
20.45 — 21.30 Buffalo Woman
19.30 — 20.15 Meltybrains?
18.30 — 19.00 Alice Boman
18.00 — 18.15 Malcolm London
17.00 — 17.45 Interskalactic
16.00 — 16.30 Special Guest
15.00 — 15.30 Youth Mass
14.00 — 14.30 Mongoose
13.00 — 13.30 Susan O Llien & the Low Standards
12.00 — 12.30 Arioso
03.15 — 04.00 Special Guests
01.45 — 02.45 Frànçois and the Atlas Mountains
00.00 — 01.00 Perfume Genius
22.30 — 23.30 Glass Animals
21.30 — 22.00 Tommy KD
20.15 — 21.00 Ólöf Arnalds
19.15 — 19.45 I Have A Tribe
18.00 — 18.45 Dermot Byrne, Floriane Blancke & Brendan O'Regan
17.00 — 17.30 Jon Gomm 16.30
16.15 — 16.45 Join Me In The Pines
15.00 — 15.45 Rónán Ó Snodaigh & The Occassionals
14.00 — 14.30 Loah
13.00 — 13.30 Grounds For Invasion
12.00 — 12.30 Grouse
13:11Also very excited to hear Loah's powerful voice live on the Body and Soul stage.
Electric Arena Stage times
10pm-12pm: James Murphy
11pm-12pm: James Vincent McMorrow
9.30pm-10.30pm: London Grammar
6.30pm-7.15pm: Clean Bandit
4.45pm-5.30pm: We Cut Corners
1.45pm-2.30pm: Daniel James
8.30pm-9.45pm: Hercules & Love Affair
7pm-8pm: St Vincent
5.30pm-6.30pm: The 1975
4.15pm-5pm: Laura Mvula
3pm-3.45pm: Ham Sandwich
1.45pm-2.30pm: Nick Mulvey
Here's the line-up for the Main Stage, the Red Bull Music Academy Stage and the Casa Bacardi
10.45pm-12am: Pet Shop Boys
6pm-6.45pm: The Strypes
8.45pm-9.55pm: Paolo Nutini
7pm-8.05pm: Bombay Bicycle Club
3.45pm-4.45pm: Wild Beasts
2pm-3pm: The Stranglers
12.30pm-1.30pm: Trinity Orchestra
7pm-8pm: Lily Allen
3.50pm-4.50pm: Sinead O’Connor
2.20pm-3.20pm: The Wailers
1pm-2pm: Dublin Gospel Choir
Red Bull Music Academy Stage
2am-4am: Sunil Sharpe
1am-2am: Dark Sky
10pm-11.35pm: Republik DJs
2am-4am Joy Orbison
1am-2am: Dorian Concept
12am-1am: Colm K
11pm-12am: Handsome Paddy
10pm-11pm: Open Mind
10pm: Dimitri From Paris
8pm: Bill Scurry
4pm: Leigh Farrell
10.30pm: Greg Wilson
6:30pm: Jonas Rathsman
3pm: Get Down Edits
10pm: The 2 Bears
6.30pm: Nancy Whang
3pm: Decent Perks
1.30pm: Kelly Anne Byrne
12pm: Eddie K
Here are Tony Clayton-Lea’s top ten must-sees for Electric Picnic 2014
Pet Shop Boys (Main Stage)
Blondie (Main Stage)
Portishead (Main State)
FKA twigs (Little Big Tent)
The Blades (Cosby Stage)
Buffalo Sunn (Little Big Tent)
Back (Main Stage)
Sinéad O’Connor (Main Stage)
St Vincent (Electric Arena)
Jenny Lewis (Rankin’s Wood Stage)
We all know Electric Picnic isn’t just about the music and mud. We can also look forward to plenty of tasty eats over the weekend.
Over 100 food stalls have been setting up shop on the festival site preparing for the many hungry revellers headed their way preparing everything from organic pie and mash, pulled pork sandwiches, fresh made seafood chowder to aromatic potato dumplings from the streets of Pakistan and fresh made taco’s from Mexico.
There will also be an Artisan Food Market offering fresh produce from the local area and you can visit the Theatre of Food in the Mindfield hosting some of the top chefs in the country.
14:23AA Roadwatch are reporting wet road conditions reported around Portlaoise, Co Laois. Motorists are advised use dipped headlights to improve visibility. Slow down and drive with extra care.
Right, it's time for me to pass the reins over to Hugh Linehan who will continue to keep you up to date on all the goings on at Electric Picnic 2014. You can follow him @hlinehan on Twitter.
I'm going to jump in the gluaisteán and hope for blazing sunshine by the end of the day. See you at Stradbally!
15:14Thanks Sorcha. Hugh Linehan here, taking over for the next few hours from the glamorous Irish Times offices at Electric Picnic.
15:19The rain seems to have stopped for the moment, but be warned that there's already several inches of mud on some of the approach paths to the site.
15:31You can tweet me @hlinehan or mail firstname.lastname@example.org with any updates on traffic, mud, or anything else that takes your fancy. I have to say it was a trying experience getting onto the site today so don't dawdle and give yourself as much time as possible to get here and get yourself set up.
And just in case you haven't seen it already, here's the forecast.
Mostly overcast today with scattered outbreaks of rain and drizzle, mist in parts too. Sunny spells breaking through in parts too though, driest in the southeast and for time yet across the north midlands. Breezy, with fresh and gusty southwest winds, strongest near Atlantic fringes. Highest temperatures 16 to 19 degrees Celsius, mildest across the south of Leinster.
Scattered outbreaks of rain and drizzle continuing tonight, driest across southern and northern regions. Mist and low cloud persisting in some regions. Relatively mild with lowest temperatures of 11 to 13 degrees Celsius. Southwest breezes will ease, decreasing moderate overnight.
Tomorrow Saturday will rather cloudy and somewhat breezy, later in the day sunny spells will develop more widely. Many areas will hold dry, however some showers will occur, most of these across Ulster. Highest temperatures of 16 to 18 degrees Celsius.
Saturday night will be humid and misty with light winds and near calm conditions. Mist will form widely and may thicken to fog inland. Sunday will be a dry day in most places, but a little light rain or drizzle will occur in parts of the west and north.
So, coming up this evening, on the Main Stage:
10.45pm-12am: Pet Shop Boys
6pm-6.45pm: The Strypes
Just one act in the Electric Arena tonight: James Murphy from 10pm to midnight.
16:13..and Body and Soul, Trenchtown etc are all open for business. The Cosby Stage and Little Big Tent get going tomorrow.
Want to go to next year's Electric Picnic for free?
The Ticket promises a pair of tickets to Electric Picnic 2015, to the "Best Picnicker" of this weekend.
Do you know someone who made great costumes for all their mates, who smuggled an item into the festival an uncomfortable place, who quickly dug a ditch to prevent a campsite flooding, who retrieved their lover's phone after the lover dropped it down a Portaloo, who helped erect several people's tents in the rain, who sherpa-ed someone else's heavy bags for miles looking for a campsite, who scored a ticket for their friend/relative at the last-minute, who stopped to fix a puncture for a helpless campervan owner, or who just made some other person's - or persons' - weekend great.
To nominate someone for hero of Electric Picnic 2014, email email@example.com. We'll sort the nominator out with a nice (sur)prize too.
16:54It's that exciting time of the day when you're stuck in a muddy field and your wifi goes down. But I have faith in you, Vodafone 4G!
18:06Oh my God! In the sky! What's that THING?
18:07Overheard at the Picnic 1 Drunk girl, 5pm Friday: "On a scale of one to ten, how hot do I look in these aviators? Drunk girl's "friend": "Em, six?"
18:16Uh oh. Word from those on the road is that the traffic is - I quote - 'only mental'.
18:26We can hear a thudding sound that's shaking the Irish Times hut. Apparently it's 'toddlers from Cavan playing the music of the 1930s', according to one of our crack critical team. That'd be The Strypes then...
And our first review is in. Jim Carroll has this:
Opening the main stage at an event like this is a fairly daunting task. There are not that many people in yet, the stage is pretty damn big and you’re a band that no-one really knows.
Dublin band Tvvins, recently signed to Atlantic Records, made easy work of the job. You’ll know Conor Adams from his other band Cast of Cheers, while Lar Kaye has done time with Adebisi Shank and No Spill Blood. Joined for the live shows by Cork drummer Lewis Hedigan, Tvvins make a meaty, groovy, sand-blasted racket.
They have the muscular chops to go right in your face with their riffs, but there’s also a warm, natural nous for the indie groove wig-out which also stands to them. Expect to hear these tunes turn up everywhere in the coming months.
3 words: tvvined with rock
Like this, see this: The Orwells
A first food review lands from Laurence Mackin. Just when I'm getting hungry:
'Kinara kitchen's khat a khat boat is diced chicken cooked with 52 spices seved on lettuce, with crisp naan and mango chutney. Lads I'll be honest. Much like aromat back in the day, you had me at 52 spices. Delecious and almost too classy for a Stradbally field.'
It only took 5 hours but I finally made it to the Picnic, happy out. Sorcha Pollak here, taking over the blog for the next few hours.
Send me your stories and pics from Electric Picnic, would love to hear from all you festival goers.
I'm on @SorchaPollak or firstname.lastname@example.org
Here's Una Mullally's short but sweet review of Slaves:
Three word review: Bloody well brilliant.
Oh 'ello! Other Voices has always had an eye better than Coco Chanel staring at a strip of black cloth, but opening with a British band this unheard of yet this brilliant is really a statement and a half. Slaves arrive on stage, a two piece - all ballsy yet pristine guitars and slamming stand up drums, grabbing the surrounding woodland by the trunk and shaking the foliage to bits. A stunning debut, dripping with sweat and sincerity.
Here's Jim Carroll's take on The Altered Hours
Body & Soul
The Altered Hours do one thing and they do it very, very well. From Cork, the five-piece are psych-rock proponents who produce one driving, pulsating, hypnotic groove after another. You can understand within seconds why fellow travellers like Brian Jonestown Massacre's Anton Newcombe think so highly of them: this is music with real menace and intensity.
It’s also a sound which works best in certain environments. The tension in tracks like “Sweet Jelly Roll” is probably best suited for a dark room with a stobe going full pelt in the corner rather than an open-air set at dusk. You get the feeling that the band’s raw power doesn’t quite come with the same punchy vim as it might on other occasions.
That’s not to say, though, that the band struggle or fall short. There’s a visceral bite to the material which makes you want to hear more and move closer. One to see again with a roof for them to raise.
3 words: Leeside raw power
Like this, see this: Unknown Mortal Orchestra (Sunday, Cosby)
21:07The Foals are sounding pretty good from our rattling trailer behind the main stage.
Patrick Freyne takes a step back in time for Blondie.
It’s always a worry when going to see a band from “the past” playing the music of “the past” that you’re actually going to see a bunch of holograms and tricks with mirrors or possibly a mummy. But the sweat on Clem Burke’s brow as he pounds through ‘One way or Another’ belie this. Yes, this is really Blondie playing the music of Blondie. And their still unique brand of crunchy, post-punk disco still makes Debbie Harry prowl around the stage and shake her hair and sing those high pitched melodies on Heart of Glass and Rapture. And she can still do the rap bit. And everyone sings along. And then they do Fight for Your Right to Party. Oh, and some youngsters do a dance to Hanging on the Telephone which involves making a telephone shape with their fingers. That’s just some of the creativity Blondie can inspire.
3-word review – Heart of Class
Here's Peter Crawley's review of The Viking Project
Three StarsSinger Andy Guyett praises "the sun god" and it's a moment for this Wicklow/Dublin blues-rock five piece to make hay. Delivering
1970s-indebted barroom grooves and wailing solos in an incongruously Edenic setting, they divide a short set between energetic brawlers and more intricate folk bawlers. Born for the night, perhaps, but they ring out clear in the light of day.The day just got a lot brighter. "Can we all get a big round of
applause for the sun god?' asks Andy Guyett and the modest crowd at Body and Soul Arean cheer contentedly. It's a moment of early-evening relief and a much-needed boost in spirits that the Wicklow/Dublin blues-rock five piece deserve to capitalise on. It might be the satisfying incongruity of their 70s-indebted barroom grooves and wailing rock delivered in such an Edenic venue that gives a short set such traction.
Sharing vocals (they all sing, often in honeyed harmonies) and trading energetic brawlers like Coral Boy for the intricate A Year in Disappear and plaintive Driftwood, these taut
(self-deprecating) to a fault, pair a brawny sound with
vocal delicacy, a braying lead harmonica with sharp lines on mandolin.
Some throaty exhortations and lachrymose singalongs may be better
Sorcha Pollak has weaved unsteadily off into the night*. This is Hugh Linehan back again to pick up the baton for the remainder of the evening at Electric Picnic.
*not strictly true.
You've already seen Laurence Mackin's video review of Foals. Here is his pearly prose:
Foals are getting very good at this stadium stuff. It's no harm when you have a light show that would give the Pet Shop Boys a run for their money. While Nautilus pumps out over the PA, sheet lasers and swirling green lights pour off a stage made more dramatic by the rapidly falling light.
Heavy Water throws it's deft weight around, Red Socks Pugie is immense but it's probably, inevitably it's precursor, Spanish Sahara that's the highlight, offset by a gorgeous lattice of lasers reaching out into the main stage crowd, gone wild to these effective indie rock hymn.
In two words: Stradbally Sahara
Like this? See this today? White Denim
Review - Girl Band, Body and Soul main aren
60 word review:
Girl Band don't so much play songs as strangle them, shred them, pound them into brutal submission. Sure, they have influences, but they play like they invented noise-rock, unleashing immensely controlled and pleasingly surly salvos against every ill. Some songs last several minutes and turn through various movements; others are over in a few skull rattling seconds. Dementedly exciting stuff.
Three word review: Your final warning
- Peter Crawley
I'm particularly sorry I missed Dimitri from Paris tonight. Here's Jim Carroll's review.
DIMITRI FROM PARIS
There are two ways to move the crowd at a festival. You give them the hits – witness the hordes flocking to see Blondie on the main stage (their agent might want to up the fee next time out) – or you give them the grooves.
When it comes to the latter, Dimitri from Paris is your man. Actually, he’s Dimitri from Istanbul but let’s not let some minor geographical shilly-shallying stand in the way of a brandname.
What Dimitri does is very simple: he stands on a stage, looks suave in a suit and plays some damn brilliant house music. You could do it, I could do it (I look suave in a suit, believe me, and I could stand on a stage) but it’s Dimitri who’s got the breaks. And the beats. And the grooves.
At a festival like this, caught in a Venn diagram between all kinds of styles, sounds and trends, house music is the gospel which never goes out of fashion. Dimitri, he preaches it.
3 words: Ooh la la
Like this? Duke Dumont
From Patrick Freyne:
There’s a sort of honour guard of people having a wee on the way into Stradbally. At the main entrances, hordes of people queue up with all their worldly possessions and beer. It's like a refugee camp for alcoholics. A woman dressed as a bear snogs a girl dressed as a tiger. “They aren’t even from the same ecosystem,” sniffs a girl pulling a wheelie cart (lots of people have wheelie carts). “How can they mate?”
Inside, someone drops some cans of beer in the mud and I help pick them up. One has burst and is spraying everywhere. “You can have that one,” she says. “As a reward”
Some people jog by with “tour-de-picnic” tee-shirts. One is drinking a can of Heineken. “To keep hydrated,” he gasps.
In the Trailer Park, Dr David Sumray’s whirring and bleeping Deprogramming Machine, is used, after a brief consultation (“When were you last hugged by a tree?”), to suck unwanted influences from my body in the form of coloured fluids. “We’re taking too much! He can’t take it!” cries “lab technician” Jake Ennis. “Are you a real doctor?” I ask.
At the Body and Soul Arena campfire Cormac Fitz, Paul Curran and Lewis Kenny deliver street poetry unamplified to a huddle of people. They’re brilliant. “Now do it naked,” shouts a passing wag. Curran has a tattoo of Keats. In the Greencrafts area, Mark Wilson, who wears a tri-corn hat, is beating a red hot poker into the shape of a hook. In Mindfield, Kerry from Kerry cadges a cigarette while her children are distracted in the Coder Dojo tent. “They don’t know I smoke,” she says. “Sh*t, they’re looking for me. Hide me!”
Lots of people are wearing costumes. Batman rides a penny farthing. Eoin and his friends are also dressed as Sesame Street characters. “Its child friendly,” says Eoin, who’s dressed as Oscar. Unfortunately, a few years ago one of them dressed as “pedobear”. “Not so child friendly,” he says.
Just before Blondie’s set, the sun comes out. Brian Breen carries a massive flag featuring a unicorn “So my friends can find me.” John Nolan wears a runner’s “camelpack” which he has filled with whisky. “I view Electric Picnic as a sporting event,” he explains. Such innovation. Lots of people sing along to Living on a Prayer, which is being played over the PA. “It’s going to lift, this recession,” slurs a young man in a Dublin jersey. “Are you an angel?” asks a man in a cowboy hat. Then he burps.
23:39Here's Una Mullally Going West with the Pet Shop Boys
23:49And finally for tonight....
01:36Here's the front cover of the Daily Ticket which will be available on site this morning.
This event has now ended
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