regulars Snow Patrol draw a heaving crowd to wrap up the first day of T in the Park

T in the Park 2012 review

published: Tue 10th Jul 2012

Snow Patrol

Friday 6th to Sunday 8th July 2012
Balado, nr Kinross. Scotland, KY13 0NJ, Scotland MAP
£199 full weekend with Thursday camping
daily capacity: 85000
last updated: Thu 15th Nov 2012

Excitement about T in the Park for most starts mounting months before the event – this year was undoubtedly no different. However, a shadow in the form of a shockingly bad weather forecast put a dampener on the weekend for some. Walking into the Balado site on Friday afternoon, it was clear the 85,000 strong crowd had taken the forecasts to heart – denim hot pants and cropped tops were teamed with wellies and ponchos and for once it was good to see most of the T-goers coming prepared for the weather, give or take the odd reveller convinced their brand new white trainers would stay pristine for the weekend.

around the festival site (3)
The layout changed again for 2012's festival – the main stage and NME stage stayed put from last year but the main difference was the addition of the Sunset Strip near the campsite entrance, housing a new Cabaret tent and a greatly reduced in size Slam Tent. The new entertainment area seemed like a great idea – yet being stuck seemingly out of the way of the main arena meant that a trip in this direction needed to be to see something spectacular; particularly in the later stages of the weekend.

Walking into the arena at the start of the day, it was time to get the lay of the land. With the important locations scoped out – toilets, bar – it was time to mosey on down to the main stage to witness The Darkness looking as glam rock as ever with front man Justin Hawkins in a lycra one-piece and sporting some fetching facial hair. As exuberant as ever, song 'I Believe In A Thing Called Love' was undoubtedly the crowd favourite but the openers had a surprisingly healthy sized crowd so early on in the day.

Kaiser Chiefs
Hanging around the main stage while the clouds, although present, thankfully refrained from opening on us, the Kaiser Chiefs appeared to a building crowd. They belted out their best known hits such as 'Every Day I Love You Less And Less' and 'Ruby' to a rapturous chorus from the crowd. The Leeds based group were a pleasant surprise – lead singer Ricky Wilson brought great energy to the proceedings, leaving the excitable audience dancing merrily along.

Having kicked off T 2012 in style, it was time to head over to see what the King Tut's tent had to offer. Fast becoming one of the bigger tents of the festival, it played host to rising star Labrinth. The 23 year old producer/singer-songwriter is perhaps best known for his recent collaborations with Tinie Tempah in 'Pass Out' and 'Earthquake' but the chameleon of music showed off a far more extensive range playing his debut solo single 'Let The Sun Shine': and if the sing-a-long from the crowd was enough to control the weather, there would have been a phenomenal amount of sunshine that evening. Yet it was the driving bass of 'Earthquake' which closed Labrinth's set in the tent, proving the Hackney boy is on the rise.

From King Tut's where the party spirit was truly in force, it was the natural course to head back to the main stage, just in time to see Example kick things off. He dished out the ultimate in feel good pop, moving from earlier hit 'Kickstarts' through to recent chart hit 'Changed The Way You Kissed Me' backed in traditional festival style by the chanting backing vocals of the crowd.

Olly Murs
From there, it was a bit of a change over at the NME stage, with 2009 X Factor runner-up Olly Murs and all-round mothers' favourite bringing a bit of light-hearted and family friendly pop to the stage. To say his set was full of cheese would be an understatement, but in the jam-packed format of T in the Park, sometimes it's just nice to sit back and have a good unabashed dance. Murs played some of his own – yet decidedly lesser known songs – with the audience picking up to recent hit 'Heart Skips A Beat' before hitting out with a cover of Madness's 'There Must Be Love' and Aloe Blacc's 'I Need A Dollar'. Vocally, Murs sounded strong and as the evening darkened with winds picking up, he proved a healthy antidote to the weather.

Florence And The Machine
Once Murs' set had come to a close, it was time for another trek down to the main stage via Healthy T; this year the festival got the balance of food just right with some excellent choices on offer ensuring that the copious amounts of Tennents are soaked up by some good hearty fare. Hearing the tell-tale sound of Florence + The Machine, a crowd was building for the exuberant and eccentric group. There are some bands who know how to play to a festival crowd – late on a Friday evening the rowdy bunch are looking for energy and something to sing along to.

Unfortunately, Florence Welch's set – although executed well – lacked the energy and verve needed for a main stage act, particularly placed so high on the bill. Yet Welch tried to personalise her set throughout, renaming 'What The Water Gave Me' to 'What The Buckfast Gave Me'. Celebrating the 3 year anniversary of their debut album 'Lungs', Welch played 'Between Two Lungs' to mark the occasion.

With main stage headliners Snow Patrol having played the festival 7 times previous to this year, a trip to King Tut's to see Eighties legends New Order was planned for a change of scenery. The tent was filled with an older, predominantly male crowd, all of whom were thrilled to see the recently reformed group – with new line-up – yet with the set taking some time to build to full potential and the chorus of Snow Patrol's 'Run' filtering through to the back of the Tut's tent, the pull of the T regulars proved too much and the main stage seemed the place to be. Ed Sheeran even joined the Dundee formed band to play an exclusive new track – apparently a one-off for the Balado festival. The evening wrapped up with 'Final Straw', leaving the heaving crowd either heading home for the comfort of their homes, or to track down their tents, thankful that the weather held off for the first day of the festival.

Snow Patrol
review by: Clare Sinclair

photos by: Greg Forbes

Friday 6th to Sunday 8th July 2012
Balado, nr Kinross. Scotland, KY13 0NJ, Scotland MAP
£199 full weekend with Thursday camping
daily capacity: 85000
last updated: Thu 15th Nov 2012


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