Here are a few thoughts on my day spent at the lovely Alexandra Palace in north London where All Tomorrows Parties were hosting a three day festival:
Somehow ATP have managed to put on a festival that involves no women artists - certainly on the whole of Saturday I saw most performances and never saw a single woman on a stage (and I'm aware that at least three of the acts I never saw were all male) - this is a very poor show and made the whole event seem so... laddish.
The whole event was also relentlessly loud - I'd have loved to have had a day of variation, but it seems that no care had been taken in constructing the bill and instead they just grabbed a bunch of loud blokes with loud guitars (or a loud violin). I actually love many of the artists I saw yesterday but by the end I was yearning for something sweet and gentle.
We arrived, grabbed some (obviously nsanely overpriced) food and checked the main stage, the running order told us this was Floor - we lasted a song and then headed to the Panorama Room to watch the "metal bingo". We also checked out Chavez, also unimpressed.
Irmin Schmidt of Can then played us a few tracks from the forthcoming "Lost Tapes" collection - which was good - but the room was getting too hot so we headed out to try and find ice-cream.
We returned for the excellent Codeine, a band I've long loved but had never managed to see before... they were as good as expected but would have benefited from a smaller stage in a more appropriate environment.
Mudhoney were pretty much exactly what I'd expected... which is not a bad thing... well, exactly what I'd expected until the drum solo - last drum solo I saw I walked out of - leave solo-ing to the metal and jazz lot... it's OK-ish then. Also, nice to know there's an Iggy ready to step into Iggy's shoes when (if) he decides to retire!
Dirty Three were probably great -but they were also loud and by now I was desperate for some respite, so we retired to the Panorama Room to hear Balam Acab make some enjoyable and interesting electronic noodles.
Finally Mogwai, another band I've followed for years but I'd never got around to seeing. They made a lot of noise and it was great, but I was done. The end came just about when it needed to, and thankfully we were spared an encore.