As last year we set out on Wednesday from the O2 in London to travel by coach meeting up with our pals in Darble field close to gate A. The evening warm and sunny and we started the festival with pints of the excellent Brothers Pear cider in the West Holts field.  They used to print on the bottles “best consumed in a muddy field in Somerset”.  That is true although, the mud was to come later.

On Thursday we woke to hot sun turning our tent into a sauna.  After cooking up some bacon butties we explored the vast city that is the Glastonbury Festival before the rain came in in the afternoon.  We lounged on cushions in the warm dry comfort of a hippy tepee drinking chai and being serenaded by its resident musicians on acoustic guitar and flute.  That evening we saw the excellent  poet rapper Kate Tempest in the Rum Shack. 


The first band we saw  was Blondie at the Other Stage.  She looked as cool as ever and the band were as tight as you would expect.  The large crowd were clearly ‘touched by her presence’ and sang along to all the classics.

Next it was off to the Pyramid Stage to catch Rodrigo Y Gabriella.  They are phenomenal.  It is incredible how they can play such fast rhythms whilst using their acoustic guitars as percussion.  Gabriella’s fingers are just a blur.  Next up was Temples at John Peel Stage.  This four piece band has a great retro, west coast trippy mellow guitar sound. Poliça next, hypnotic rhythms with enchanting vocals from Channy Leaneagh.

Manage to shelter from the first enormous downpour but got caught in the second and so arrived at the Pyramid Stage very wet.  We got there early for the evening to get to the front for the nights headliners Arcade Fire.  They had switched off all the power to the stages because of the storm so when Lilly Allen started she was late and had her set cut.  She was her usual sassy self but perhaps a bit mellowed by being a mum which she referred to proudly.

When Elbow came on naturally the sun came out ( it always does for Elbow) and the backdrop to the field was dressed with a rainbow.  Guy Garvey is a master at interacting with the crowd and so had everyone waving and even Mexican bobbing to his command.  It was all good and finished with the festival favourite classic sing-along One Day Like This.

Arcade Fire were fabulous.  A visual and aural delight best appreciated from the front of the Pyramid Stage. (we were about 8 rows back).  They are a big band of twelve on stage with stunning graphics on the giant screen behind.  The set started out with a firework display then played 'Reflector'.  They played a vast selection from the back catalogue.  'Tunnels' from Funeral was just superb!

The rest of the night was spent in Shangri La before the dawn summoned us home.  This year I was disappointed with Heaven in Shangri La as it was so much smaller than last year being basically only one large room with cream carpet (you have to take off your boots), DJ but with no Snake pit bar!( a favourite in the past)  All the areas outside Heaven and around Shangri Hell were buzzing.


Saturday morning was sunny again with lots of nice Glastonbury mud to wade through.
We started off on the Park Stage with Vance Joy an Australian band who won the Australia Day radio pole with their catchy song Riptide.  Their first album should be out in September.  They were followed by Young Fathers a band from Scotland with an interesting mix of hiphop.

We moved on to the John Peel stage to see Royal Blood who were superb.  A gigantic rock sound from this two piece band.  Then it was back up the Park Stage for the electronica dance sound of Jagwar Ma which was fantastic.

Just up from the Park Stage is the small Crows Nest.  We really enjoyed Pictish Trail (Johnny Lynch) singing some songs on acoustic guitar with backing from Tough Love who also had their own spot on the bill.  Johnny is based on the isle of Eigg of the west coast of Scotland from where he runs 'Lost Map Records' and we are really looking forward to going to their wee festival there later this month.

A quick dash down to the Other Stage to catch the Manic Street Preachers who are back with a fiery vengeance to their songs again.  Then a return to the Crows Nest for an almost private performance from Courtney Barnett with her acoustic guitar.

John Grant at the Park Stage was magnificent.  I have only heard him perform solo with a piano but here he had his Icelandic band which gives his songs a huge contrast of sound.  He finished with his classic Queen of Denmark which was stunning!

We were then at the front of the Park Stage for Mogwai.  Loud, heavy, hypnotic and superb.
Finished  the night dancing in the Bimble Inn to a live brass swing band.


Lazed about on Sunday morning before heading over to the Other stage for White Lies.  We got the time wrong so saw Lucy Rose first.  She had a sweet voice and 5 piece backing band.  White Lies rocked in the sun.

We all met up at the Pyramid stage for Dolly Parton. The field was absolutely packed with apparently 120,000 people.  She was so entertaining and squealed with delight at her reception.  She was joined by Richie Sambora from Bon Jovi for part of her set.  The singing along to her last number I Will Always Love You was quite moving.

A superb rock performance from The Black Keys on the Pyramid Stage was followed by the headliners Massive Attack on the Other Stage.  They were just incredible and their visuals on the back screen with lasers were stunning.  A brilliant end to another fantastic and memorable Glastonbury!!!!!