Many, many months ago I half considered buying tickets to go to this year’s wireless festival. Not the James Gray/David Blunt/KT Thingie nonsense that happened over the weekend, of course, but just the first day of the event, the “indie” day: I’m very much enjoying The Raconteurs’ album, for one, the Dirty Pretty Things remind me of The Libertines when they were good, and it’s always worth seeing the likes of The Strokes or Belle and Sebastian as a bonus.
In the end I decided that by the time you’d paid 40 quid for tickets, and added on some ridiculous postage charges and ten or so quid worth of various fees, it was all a bit much for a few hours of music, and I didn’t bother. I think too that I half remembered that last year (when this all clashed with Glasto and thus wasn’t an option) they hadn’t sold it out, and ended up selling off tickets cheaply at the last minute on, appropriately enough, Lastminute.com. I guess I was hoping that the same thing might happen this year.
But then, as luck would have it, I didn’t have to actually pay for tickets, because a few weeks ago an email turned up offering free tickets, in exchange for signing up for some mailing list. I suppose that they must have really failed to flog the tickets this year–they even had to resort to doing the lastminute.com cheap sell off thing as well (and nice to see that so few people wanted to see James Blunt that they were reduced to flogging tickets off for just twenty quid).
Although I’m not sure if I’d have felt it was value for money if I’d had to pay to get in, considering that we all got there for nothing, I actually rather enjoyed it. After a ridiculously early start at work, I’d managed to join Sal in time to have already got inside and to the bar just as the Dirty Pretty Things took to the stage.
For a while it felt like we weren’t in London, having just dashed there from work, but more like perhaps the Saturday afternoon at Glastonbury, when maybe we’d wandered over to the Other Stage.
I particularly enjoyed seeing The Raconteurs, although I couldn’t help thinking that their thing would work a lot better in a Brixton Academy, rather than a big festival area. Later, we wandered into the XFM tent in time to catch the end of the Super Furries (they played Man Don’t Give a Fuck. Yay!) Oh, and the Strokes were a lot better than I thought they were going to be, but maybe that was just because they played so much stuff from their first album, the only one I actually like…