Tunes, fun and plenty of sun at Chester Racecourse.
It’s easy to be cynical about days like this – a corporate fest with a distinctly nostalgic billing but with the weather absolutely BLAZING and Chester racecourse looking distinctly beautiful, all’s we had to do was turn up and soak up the sounds.
And to be fair, the sounds were, well, sound…
I Am Kloot turned in a reliably beautiful set of melodic WIN which was made all the more enjoyable as their tracks bled into a shimmering swagger in the evening sun. Extra points to John Bramwell‘s on stage banter which left us thinking, and hoping, that one day they may well do ‘an Elbow‘.
Despite woeful bass amp crackles, former Happy Mondays mainman, Shaun William Ryder, was looking and sounding in rude health. A slimeline Ryder – clearly that jungle diet has paid off, whazzed through the classics (Kinky Afro, an extended Loose Fit, and a slurred and surprising inclusion of Gorillaz‘s Dare) with his Black Grape repertoire particularly frazzled. Just one thing, though, what’s with the William?
This was probably the 147th time the Australian Pink Floyd had rolled into the North West and it was the 147th time they’ve been on the money (no pun intended). Great Gig in the Sky vocal dynamics, Comfortably Numb extended guitar neck breaks and daft kangaroo inflatables it was all there. Job done.
Iggy Pop is a legend. No mistake. But Sunday’s performance was like watching your leathery drunk uncle trying to relive his golden days down the local with his OAP mates. All swivelling hips, gummy gurning and baritone bark, Iggy had plenty of spring in his step but little else in his arsenal.
Search And Destroy and an amusing moment when he caught a reveller’s shoe aimed in his direction and balanced it in between his crotch proved the highlights but this was more panto fun than punk rock.
But the day was closed in dramatic style. Shrewd billing saw Leftfield take to the stage as the sun set and the evening shadows provided the perfect backdrop for a dub-thrill-a-minute beast of a set. Original, Inspection and a quiet phenomenal Release The Pressure (all from 1995’s Leftism) set the tone before the two bombs from Rhythm and Stealth – Dusted and Phat Planet (yup, that Guinness ad), closed what proved to be quiet a marvellous day at the races.