The festival season for 2004 took a bit of a twist as I spent the two summer festivals over in Scotland and England instead of at home.
Witnness was no more, now rebranded Oxegen it also for the first time moved from the traditional August bank holiday weekend to the same weekend as T in the Park (10-11 July).
This meant that there would be a cross over of bands between Ireland and Scotland but there were a few differences in both line ups as both festivals didn’t necessarily get the same bands. One difference was that Oxegen had The Cure and T in the Park had Pixies.
I made my way over to Scotland on the Saturday to meet up with my friend Colin who lived in Glasgow. The weekend had a slight spanner in the works as Colin wouldn’t be able to make it too much later on over the weekend, so I had to try and meet up with his sister and her friends. The journey up was a bit of a nightmare as there were traffic jams along the way.
I eventually got in and got my wrist band for the weekend. Now it was time to see some bands.
There wasn’t too many bands I wanted to see on the main stage. Think the first band I saw was The Beta Band. After that it was a trip over to the NME stage to see The Zutons, followed up British Sea Power and then Funeral for a Friend.
A quick visit over to King Tut’s Tent to see Ash was a must for me. Never one to miss an Ash gig. The tent was a the perfect venue for them.
David Bowie was meant to headline the main stage but he pulled out due to illness and the headline slot was going to The Darkness. I went over to see The Charalatans before they came on. I had no intention of watching The Darkness, so it was back to the NME stage to see Muse close the Saturday evening there.
Sunday was a busy day now that I was already on site. Plenty of bands to see between the stages.
On the main stage I got to see Franz Ferndinard, The Thrills and PJ Harvey. Can’t remember seeing Kings of Leon. I went over to the NME stage and The Killers were making their UK festival debut. Brandon Flowers seemed to have had a few technical difficulties with his keyboard but he managed to overcome it.
I only made one visit to King Tut’s tent and it was bedlam trying to get in. The reason: Snow Patrol were playing. There was quite a lot of disgruntled people in the queue wanting to know who thought it was a good idea to put them in the tent when they were starting to get popular. However I managed to just about squeeze into the tent but it was definitely a great show by them. The tent suited them then but soon after it was onto bigger things.
Managed to get out of the tent and it was back to the main stage. Think Kings of Leon had just finished their set which I missed but I was not going to miss Pixies. Fantastic to get to see them on their reunion. I didn’t enjoy seeing them support Red Hot Chili Peppers earlier in the summer in Dublin but this was unmissable and the atmosphere was fantastic. The weekend finally came to a close then The Strokes headlined the main stage.
That was to be my last ever visit to T in the Park and I have enjoyed it the three times that I had been over.
Also making it a last ever festival visit for me was Reading. This would be my last visit to the venue and I have mixed feelings about the last one. I don’t think it was the best one that I been too in terms of the quality of the bands that played.
I was over again visit friends in London and we made the trip down to Reading. Most of the Friday was spent on the main stage. Got to see Taking Back Sunday, Hundred Reasons, The Distillers, The Hives, Ash and the Offspring. Again The Darkness were headlining and I was avoiding them like a plague. Thankfully the alternative was to see Super Furry Animals on the Radio 1 stage. The only other band I got to see in the tent was The International Noise Conspiracy.
On Saturday again nearly the whole day was at the main stage. We got to see Thursday, Razorlight, New York Dolls, Franz Ferdinard, The Libertines, Morrissey and The White Stripes.
Sunday was by far the worst of the three days. We were a bit late getting on site and by the time we got in, The Rasmus had already been bottled off stage which resulted in the bands being moved forward. We stuck round for Dropkick Murphys, The Streets, Lostprophets and Placebo.
There was no interest in seeing 50 Cent so it was off to the Radio 1 stage and we got to see The Von Bondies and then Supergrass. Little did we know that when we came out of the tent after Supergrass finished that Green Day had already gone onstage early.
Turned out that 50 Cent was getting some abuse from the crowd and rumour had it that somebody chucked a deckchair towards the stage and he chucked it back into the crowed. Needless to say he walked off stage and that meant the stage times were going forward again.
There were some bands I liked that were playing in the smaller tents but by this stage we had all had enough and it was time to go home. And that was my last ever visit to Reading.