Saturday Review

Glastonbury Festival 2003

published: Tue 8th Jul 2003

Friday 27th to Sunday 29th June 2003
Worthy Farm, Pilton, Shepton Mallet, Somerset, BA4 4AZ, England MAP
£105 (plus booking fee plus postage) - SOLD OUT!
daily capacity: 150000
last updated: Wed 7th Aug 2013

When the sun arrived in Pilton it arrived with a vengeance. I had to check my programme once to make sure I hadn't taken a wrong turning and ended up a Benarcassim. One also had to wonder whether the organisers had done a deal with him upstairs as the weather fit in perfectly with the mid-afternoon artists.

First, The Thrills proved why they have been termed as a British Beach Boys. Big Sur, in particular, fit in perfectly with the burning heat.

A quick trip to the Pyramid bought us The Polyphonic Spree. One look at Tim De Slaughter resplendent in his crimson robes made you wonder if it was in fact he who had ordered the sunshine. When he ordered us to "Follow the day and reach for the sun" we all did. It was like a mad Koresh type cult had descended on Glastonbury.

The Polyphonic Spree

Turin Brakes kept up the theme. Perfect laid back tunes such as Underdog and Emergency 72 had us basking happily in the sun.

However it was as the sun was setting that the true defining moment of Glastonbury arrived. The genius that is Wayne Coyne brought his Flaming Lips experience to The Pyramid. I had wondered whether the Lips could transfer their momentum to a large arena. I needn’t have worried. Furry animals, inflatable suns, large inflatable balloons all set the scene for a set of fun and frolics. When you have an entire field of thousands singing to a song about a Chinese girl fighting man eating robots you know something surreal is happening. Wayne sang Happy Burthday covered in fake blood and ended on Pink Floyd’s Breathe. How on earth could anyone follow that.

The Flaming Lips

I decided to keep the mood the Lips had engendered rather than be brought down by Radiohead. It was the Avalon stage for original punksters The Damned to close the day. I returned to my tent too elated to sleep. Perhaps I should have opted for Radiohead after all!
review by: Paul Heyes

photos by: Karen Williams

Friday 27th to Sunday 29th June 2003
Worthy Farm, Pilton, Shepton Mallet, Somerset, BA4 4AZ, England MAP
£105 (plus booking fee plus postage) - SOLD OUT!
daily capacity: 150000
last updated: Wed 7th Aug 2013


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