Saturday, 22 August 2009
Glade 2009 Review: Friday
As always, we kicked the weekend off on the Origin stage. Peter Digital’s set looked like it might be marred by the heavy showers at the start but soon, spurned on by a committed hardcore, a decent number of us decided that we’d rather get soaked than miss the lush, floaty techno coming out of those gorgeous speakers. Rain? What rain? I’m more used to hearing the Digital Structures sound on Sunday afternoon, but having it ease us into the weekend was perfect.
Next up up, Liquid Ross looked a tad nervous as he took the reins, pulling some fantastic expressions of concentration during the first few mixes. Moving from some badass psychedelic breakbeats to full on funky psy-trance though, his face soon broke into a cheshire cat grin as he reaslied that he was nailing home the first proper Origin dancefloor set of 2009. As the basslines grooved their way out across the campsite (advantage of having Origin as the outdoor stage), late risers got their dancing shoes on and the crowd swelled.
Straight from Liquid Ross to see NAPT in the Breakdown tent. NAPT have been mopping up the breakbeat awards this year and this set showed why. Unfortunately the sound wasn’t as loud as it should’ve been but this didn’t stop them getting the whole tent bouncing to the N-Funk! There were some great mash up moments, but I can’t for the life of me remember the tunes now. An energetic onstage presence really made the set as well, the energy was infectious. Surprised these guys weren’t headlining later (perhaps due to the fact they had a better offer?). Gotta have more cowbell!
I took five after NAPT, regrouping with my crew in time to saunter down to Freeland on the Glade Stage. For some reason I felt this was the best year for the Glade Stage set up – it really felt like a showcase at the entrance to the festival with lots of space to spill out without noise bleed from other areas. By the time we got there, the sun had made an appearance and was bathing the crowd in golden light as the warm up DJ was laying down some proper funky breaks (anyone know who this was?).
We were right down the front so got a good view of the band when they came on. With a rockier sound and Alex Metric on board, Cope definitely translates well for the live Freeland band. They previewed a lot of tracks off the new album, Cope, which have been floating around on promo mixtapes for a while. Perhaps predictably, highlights included Do You, Strange Things, Bring It, Morning Sun and of course everyone went mad for We Want Your Soul. A perfect sound for the evening sunshine (complemented by a well timed balloon) and a welcome return after the wait from Now & Them!
In the last few years The Rabbit Hole has become one of my favourite places at Glade, and somehow this year it seemed cosier and fluffier than ever. I had a wicked poi spin to Droptear Modelmaker’s live liquid d’n’b sound, before shooting off with Tom Wobbler to bath in the lushness of Booka Shade. I’d been very excited about this, and for me they didn’t disappoint, even if it did feel like they kept building up to the end of the set like cock teasing bitches, leaving us wanting more and then re-delivering for what seemed like endless encores. It was lush while it lasted.
Things get a little hazy after Booka Shade but I do know I was drawn to the flames of the Arcadia stage like a moth to a candle (I’d actually planned to see Deekline and Wizard in the breakdown). This rig was awesome, 360 degree Function One with flame throwers, a DJ tower with a lighthouse like perspex screen, stages to dance on and strobes with enough light to burn your retinas off. Danielle had told me about it at Electric Picnic last year and I’d seen the video from Glasto, but still wans’t prepared for the full on Burning man meets mad max-esque craziness of it.
We arrived just in time to see Freeland’s DJ set, heavy dubstep remixes of his new tunes twisting into some proper filthy electro. Quite different from the live band, but ideal for the post-apocalyptic atmosphere.
Following Freeland were Liquid Records secret weapon, Atomic Drop. I’ve been going on about these boys since I saw them at Luminopolis last year. Their heavy electro breaks basslines are some of the crunchiest sounds this side of a demolition ball, and for Glade they were pulling out a turbo charged set with Djems swinging around the DJ tower like a ghetto biker monkey on heat. Beyond this I remember very little…