Just as I thought that Electric Picnic was beginning to lose its magic, It exceeds my expectations once again. Some highlights:
Fever Ray obliterating an memory of her prior appearance at Oxegen. My mind ascended into the green lasers and descended as dry ice. A magical immersive experience.
Monotonix – Dirty Y-fronts wearing Tel Aviv punks who look like proper Robinson Crusoes doing a Dan Deacon (except they were probably doing it first) and playing in every corner of the Cosby tent. At one point, the drummer ran outside with a part of the drumkit and played on the grass before running back in. There were stage dives and lots of ” we respect the rules” behaviour. So glad I saw this band.
Omar Souleyman – It was worth sticking around in the torrential rain for the Syrian’s Middle Eastern dance music set. Pounding drums, ultra-fast rhythms, lightning fast electronic melodies – it’s not hard to see where the more global-leaning sound of dance music as popularised by Diplo and M.I.A might have got some ideas from in recent years. Souleyman has recorded over 500 cassette albums in the last 16 years.
Robyn – Both the main show and the acoustic slot in ThisisPopBaby were masterclasses in how to do pop properly. The Swede certainly knows how to put on a show and her dancing was incredible: all pirouettes, windmills and ’80s moves. Later on, in a stripped-down set, ‘Dancing On My Own’ becomes the festival tune of the weekend.
Janelle Monae – The Atlanta girl who blew me away in London came to Ireland and slayed the crowds twice. On Friday, her show was all anyone could talk about. I caught her Body and Soul show this time around and reports from that show indicated it suited her better than the main stage earlier that day.
Other hits: Rubberbandits, Foals, ASIWYFA, Steve Mason, Caribou, Dam Funk, Beardyman. A photo gallery is to follow.