Waking up indoors, with sofas, TV, a hot shower and a fully functioning kitchen (mmmmmm, bacon) made us fully appreciate the differences with Glasto et al. Perhaps we're just getting old After recovering from Friday's antics, we spread our team of reporters thinly, like so much butter across the musical toast that was Saturday's Dedbeat (our breakfast really was that good). While Richard D James (aka Aphex Twin) span an early afternoon set of old-skool acid and jungle in the Pulse Ranks, the Deadly Sins and Sinstars b-boys span on their heads to the sounds of DJ Prone in the Beat Ranks. DJ Yoda followed them with his usual insane hip hop/easy listening blends (Nas vs the A-Team anyone???) which seemed to bemuse the hungover massive.
After a bit of record-digging, we picked up our speedos and towels and trotted off to the faux-tropical swimming complex for the Pool Party!!! Plastic palm trees, a half-pipe, DJs spinning funk & hip hop, breakers in the kiddie pool and Nottingham rhymer Scor-Say-Zee helped us forget that we were in Great Yarmouth rather than LA - it was the perfect way to relax before the evenings exertions. Having filled our bellies with lasagne in our chalet and watched New Flesh and Deftex's new school UK hip hop on the Dedbeat TV channel, we hauled our arses down to the Beat Ranks to catch the end of Phi-Life Cypher's positive and political rap music - 'I can see clearly now the crack smoke's gone, it's gonna be a bright, bright weed-smoking daaaaaaayyy.' Ahem.
The weekend's third new-school funk act followed, the popular 11-piece Ninja Tune beat combo 'Herbaliser', playing with rapper Wildflower and singer Simi. They equalled the heights set by the previous evenings funkateers, particularly the incredibly skilled keyboardist, though the naff scratching of Ollie Teeba will not have had DJ Craze (who played later) reaching for his copy of 'DJing for Dummies'.
Lengthy technical hitches held up the next performer, Edan, a relative newcomer to the US underground hiphop scene. While we waited, he wandered round the stage in school shirt, tie and nylon trousers, rocking a mad-nerdy wig, preparing his guitar, turntables and vocal wah-wah pedal. Starting off with an incoherent folk song, he then switched styles as expected and started hectoring the brainDed with his rapid fire lyrics, storming beats and beat juggling. He totally won over the curious crowd and will certainly sell a few records off the back of his blazing set.
After the new, the old-skool. Doug E Fresh, rap's first Top of the Pops guest played a slightly conventional set, dropping the expected 80's classics and party-rap freestyles but also giving the people what they wanted - his original human beatbox routines, reminding everyone of the school playground, circa 1984.
Having gorged ourselves on funk and hip hop, we headed over to the Pulse Ranks for the electro stylings of the retro-feel DMX Krew. Mad east European Bogdan Raczynki then jerked around behind his laptop like a meat muppet in the hands of a drug-crazed Jim Henson to the sounds of his frenetic, chopped-up drum n bass.
As the late night haze
descended, we drifted from DJ Craze's jungle + scratching to Luke Vibert's jungle
+ experimentation, from Plaid (who were wicked but marred by technical problems)
and Ceephax to Dillinja, and finally the chalet at 6am. So many great acts,
not enough time - what a lovely problem.
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