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"You're not drunk if you can lie on the floor without holding on" 22 July 2004 | week 430
Pictured top: Molly in pre-festival clean grass | Tri winks from a tent | Brian in his tent | Naomi | Camp neighbours | Waltzer and Brian in sombreros
Row 2: Tri and Naomi | HAL on stage | guys with Bulmers branded hats | guy with Oxegen shaved into head | Girl with really tall hair | guy with cola on head to attract mate
Row 3: Des Sarah and Brian | Electric Six on stage | the big wheel | Triona and Molly | Mylo on stage | Caroline and Waltzer
Row 4: Guys making human tower - note bottle being thrown | Ash on stage | Evening sets on Sunday night | people take shelter under sign | Brian throws toilet roll
Background photo: Richie, Molly, Tri and Brian at our tent circle
This week Waltzer and Luke go head to head with Oxegen reviews!
Friday: How did he get so drunk?
Wow! Oxegen baby! What a weekend! Arrived down on Friday with Triona, Mairead, Tri's friend Naomi, Richie and Darina, Brian and Marie. We set up tents, had a few beers and waited for Niall, Steve, Luke and Alan Rapple to join us. Pretty soon I had drank all my beers. Aparently I was falling about the place, but if I can't remember falling around and I only have bruises to show for it, sure I probably wasn't so bad!
I popped my head into a tent and when I left I walked around the back of the tent and heard tri saying "How did he get so drunk?" and I grabbed her on the shoulders and said "How did he get so drunk?" - frightened the life out of her, got a laugh from everyone else!
Kinda fell asleep early the first night but apparently there were fun and games to be had all over the campsite. Granddad Wall here brought his earplugs to get a nights sleep and I tell you I'm glad of it now!
Poor Brian got his slab of beer robbed from in front of the tent that night. That put a dampener on it for him, especially since he heard someone messing about in front of the tent. His spirits were dampened further by the rain and his lack of plastic poncho, but when my sis Elaine brought in a rain jacket for him on Sunday his spirits lifted a bit!
Saturday: Doctor Who?
Saturday got off to a great start, we approached the main stage to the sound of HAL's Worry About the Wind. Luckily I had smuggled in a two litre bottle of vodka and vanilla coke, so we had that for breakfast. I got a bit sick of it after a time so Molly drank the rest of it while I moved onto beers. HAL were great, I'd seen them in the Sugar Club once because one of the guys is Niall's brother in law.
Moved about the place then in different tents as the rain came down. Met up with Elaine and Kate. Spoke to Mandy and Liam but couldn't get a hold of them! Went down to Scissor Sisters then who were great. I'm telling you get their album! Then came on Franz Ferdinand who I was also looking forward to seeing having heard their album. They really rocked, one of the best gigs. Your man was visibly impressed with the reception. They played a stormer. Looked at a bit of Divine Comedy - a band I'm not that familiar with but I was impressed with what I saw. I might get some of their tunes. I think I went to see Electric Six next. They were great, they played Danger High Voltage, but lacked the girl singer unfortunately. I think she adds to the excitement of the song. Everyone went mad when they played Gay Bar, and Brian was singing Gay Bar for the rest of the weekend! They finished off with a cover of Queen's Radio Gaga to a sea of hands in the big blue tent!
Brian stayed back to see Elbow and I went over to Snow Patrol. At least that's the way I think it happened. But whatever happened I couldn't find the girls at Snow Patrol. And as amazing as Snow Patrol are I just wasn't in form for watching them on my own. So I went back and found Brian. Can't remember what Elbow were like sorry! Ha ha some rock journalist I am!
So we stayed there and saw the amazing Orbital gig. It was fantastic! Everyone was raving about it afterwards! They played a great set. And then they finished and then they came back out, and I was thinking "Play 'Doctor Who', please play doctor who" and the anticipation was mad... A few seconds later the unmistakeable doing of the Doctor Who song came on and I was elated! It was brilliant! Such a great show, the atmosphere was great - Orbital were wearing their torch glasses and people had glow sticks - it was a great buzz.
I was shattered by the end of Orbital but headed over to Massive Attack with Brian to finish the night. They were great and the light show was fantastic. I couldn't take the standing up any more though and I left Brian for the comfort of my Argos tent and foam sheet. I was conked out for the night again while the others had parties about the place!
Sunday: Guitars on fire!
Sunday woke up and had brekkie of Nutri-grain bars and chocolate milk. Lovely!! Went down to the field again without bothering to smuggle in any drink. As we approached the main stage The Sawdoctors were playing N17 and we all gave it loads, it was a great show! Some bog warriors were getting into it a bit too much but sure I would be doing the same to Ash later on in the game (or so I hoped!).
While we were watching The Sawdoctors, Liam O'Maonlai from the Hothouse Flowers came wandering about and stood near us checking out the atmosphere. They were on next and played their new single Your Love Goes On And On. Unfortunately the sound failed during Don't Go and the band didn't seem to realise. When it came back up a huge cheer rang through and the band looked very surprised!
From there we had some breakfast from whatever van had the smallest cues, so I had a smoothie and a hot beef lasagne - fantastic. None of your queuing up for ten minutes to get an overpriced O'Briens sambo for me!
There wasn't much doing early on Sunday so I wandered over to see Alphastates who didn't seem to be on stage and nobody could tell me who was on stage! Left then and went over to the main stage and caught a bit of the Black Eyed Peas, man that chick is hot! Then watched a bit of Pink before meself and Brain headed off to see Mylo. When we got to the dance arena there were Spirit DJs on stage with two sexy dancers. I thought nothing of it, dancing away. Brian took a video of the white one dancing. Then when they were finished and we waited for Mylo I bumped into my friend Caroine from a while ago. And she said "Did you see me dancing?" Ha ha she was the dancer Brian was filming! So he got to meet her in the end. Fair play to me! She's a dance in Sprit now she says.
Mylo played a great set with live instruments over the chopped up work of the Destroy Rock and Roll album. Really enjoyed that show. When he played In My Arms and Drop the Pressure the crowd gave it loads. I got wrecked in there - my white t-shirt was covered in muck as people kept throwing water about and kicking mucky footballs at each other, but it was good fun!
We left them and headed over to queue for the mosh pit for Ash. Once Faithless came off stage there was lots of room for us to go in! But when Ash came on stage the people about me weren't really dancing or moving about at all, so whenever I jumped up and down I thought I was bothering them. In the bleedin' mosh pit! They shouldn't have been in there if they're not gonna play by the rules!
Tim Wheeler came out with his guitar on fire, blew it out and plugged it in, then played a great set of oldies and some new tracks. The girl from Ash has her new single available to download from her site if anyone's interested. It's pretty good. There was lots of crowd surfing and jumping about in the mosh pit but not near me unfortunately! We got a treat then as Thin Lizzy guitarist Brian Robertson came onstage and they performed The Boys Are Back in Town. Funny I was saying in the campsite that it's a pity Thin Lizzy aren't playing, I wouldn't mind hearing The Boys are Back in Town! They finished with Burn Baby Burn, and we left the mosh pit after Ash. Man, it poured rain out there but it was Ash, so I didn't mind!
Took a break after that and tried to regroup. The girls had gone down to the Libertines to get a good place (front row if you don't mind!) for Basement Jaxx. It was killing me all day whether to go to Basement Jaxx or The Darkness and I thought I'd have it figured out by the end of the day. I didn't think I'd mind cos once I saw Ash I was happy, you know! I have to say I was a tiny bit disappointed with the people in the mosh pit, they kinda took away from the buzz. No mark against Ash of course!!
So I decided to catch a few Darkness tunes and then get the end of Basement Jaxx. Oh maaaan! Worst decision ever! Darkness were about 45 mins late and then played a long guitar intro before starting. Meanwhile everyone at Basement Jaxx were buzzin away to Red Alert! I watched about two songs and went to Basement Jaxx who played Where's Your Head At - not the greatest buzz at the back though! They finished soon after that and when we went back the Darkness were only playing I Believe In A Thing Called Love, so at least I didn't miss that. But it felt like a bit of an anti-climax to end the weekend off on! Everyone says Basement Jaxx was the best of the weekend! How bad how bad! Really annoyed at that! Damn Lowestoft boys!
Monday: Food fight!
The next day as we packed up, the toilet rolls started to be thrown through the air. And then fruit. And then bottles, then sambos, yoghurt, anything at all! Steve, Niall, Luke versus Brian, Waltzer, Tri and Molly. It was mental.
Totally knackered on Monday and I had to go to the Doors gig in the Point with Mick. Luckily I didn't fall asleep this time! The Doors were excellent by the way, absolutely brilliant, couldn't have been better.
So Oxegen! Yeah. Camping: good | Music: Excellent | Keeping track of the friends: so so | Fun and games: deadly!
Definitely going again next year with more beer and a proper poncho. Remember kids, fashion has no place at a rainy festival! I hope you enjoyed it as much as me, baby!
- Alan Wall
Oxegen - We came, we saw, we rocked!
Fun and Games
Well after months of anticipation, weeks of preparation, and half an hour dragging all our gear to the campsite, the highlight of the Irish Music scene for the summer has been and gone, and by god, it was savage! Pure Rock N' Roll, Proper Bo, Titties and Beer. Lots of top bands, thousands of crazy people, a schlap of rain here and there and beer to beat the band, what more could you ask for out of a weekend except maybe some clean toilets! I myself avoided having to make any physical contact with said portaloo's by mostly concentrating on a largely liquid diet for the weekend. However, all of this would be completely irrelevant if it wasn't for the sound group of truly festival fit people I had the pleasure of spending the weekend with. And following a bit of post festival consultation with them, here is how it happened! I would also like to apologise to the residents of the three tents I feel on while drunk on Friday night! I promise to curb my home wrecking in the future! Rock N' Roll!
Best Live Act of the Weekend
Saturday night saw Orbital perform their last ever Irish gig after over fifteen years of delivering consistent quality music and was this performance that both Waltzer and Ruth nominated as their best live act. Other notable mentions include Bell X1 for Richie, Massive Attack for Brian and Belle and Sebastian for myself.
Mairead, Ste, Triona, Niall, and Marie all gave Basement Jaxx the thumbs up for this one and I don't think that anybody who saw the Jaxx play could possibly deny that they did deliver a truly thundering set. Mairead and Triona also mentioned Snow Patrol and Orbital respectively as very close seconds.
The other quality bands that deserve a mention are The Strokes, Kings of Leon the fantastic HAL who opened the proceedings on Saturday morning.
Most Disappointing Act
There was a few different points of view were thrown up for this one. Some of the contenders for this title are Snow Patrol (Ruth), Franz Ferdinand (Richie) and the Chick Chickoooo guy (Brian), whoever the hell that was. I must have been drunk for that one. There was more than a few mentions for the Darkness, I didn't see them myself but the general consensus was that the man in the sequined cat suit and his band of wild haired cronies weren't up to the job of headlining. Myself, Marie and Mairead were all impressed by what we saw. Triona was only disappointed that she couldn't get in to see the Chemical Brothers. If it's any consolation, I heard they were class! Ste listed his disappointing act as that of Niall after the Saturday sleepathon!
Biggest Music Surprise
Of course everyone had their own must-sees but there will always been some unexpected band that really floats your boat. And here is what the veritable panel of experts thought. Belle and Sebastian (Triona), God is an Astronaut (Mairead, Ruth), Jerry Fish and the Mudbug Club (Marie), Electric Six (Waltzer), Thin Lizzy Guy (Brian), Scissors Sisters (Luke), and Pink (Richie). Ste said he had no surprises. Boring! Nialls biggest music surprise was the someone on the roof during Basement Jaxx. I have to admit, it was pretty Rock N' Roll!
Best Campsite Moment
Well the music had to end some time and with 50,000 people looking to continue the fun, it was off to the campsite! Nialls best moment was realizing he forgot his sleeping bag! For Ste, Waltzer and Marie it was the food fight on Monday morning, that was Rock N' Roll. Richie thoroughly enjoyed his conversations with Mister T. Ruth touch particular joy out almost everyone who was falling out of the inflatable chairs. I enjoyed the death of Alan's tent. Finally that fetid flea hole has been cast off to tent heaven. Brian was a fan of the Buckfast in teenager's tent. Rockin' the B, woo hoo! For Triona it was having vodka and coke for breakfast at 8am. Apparently her mother wasn't too keen on that idea! Mairead found it highly amusing that Ste and Niall woke Alan and myself at 6.45am on Saturday morning. I got up, made sandwiches and cracked open a beer under the impression that it was half eleven in the morning instead of 7. The two lads couldn't sleep because they were too cold (Awwww!!!) so they thought they would wreck my sleep. The Dastards!
Best Spinal Tap/Rock N' Roll Moment
Ruth: When Orbital played a bit of Bon Jovi's 'Shot through the heart'! (I know its sad people, I know!) That's not sad, it's just Rock N' Roll
The Titties and Beer Award for Outstanding Festival Fitnness
Well there were a few surprises choices thrown up for this one. For instance, despite Niall not managing most of Saturday evening, Mairead nominated him. The reason, anyone who can go camping for a weekend without a sleeping bag has got to be festival fit. He has got a point! Triona gave it to there being too many twelve year olds to say she may be breaking the law. What does she mean, she may be breaking the law?! Niall just typed :?, a quizzical yet knowing smile, does he know something we don't! There was no messing about for Ste, he just named Alan Rapple, straight off the bat. Well when a man gives himself and moustache and goatee with a permanent black marker to fully utilise the interesting-ness of his face, he sure as hell deserves a mention!
Richie gave his nomination to too many tottie, tottie overload. How can there be too many! Ruth gave her award to Daniel, Mmmmmm .. I think we all know what she is hinting at! Brian gave his to the Tin Foil Man. Who or what he is I don't know but he sounds pretty Rock N' Roll! It was another strange man who got Waltzers vote. Duff Man. Waltzer told him "not to fold his arms, you're covering up the Duff". That Proper Bo is that! Marie gave the thumbs up to the guy who slept in the collapsed tent for two nights. What kind of lunatics were we fraternising with for the weekend! I would like to give my award to my Dad for his performance in driving myself and the lads down. Over taking five cars in a row with oncoming traffic baiting towards us, flashing their lights is definitely Rock N'Roll!
And finally I asked these good people to finish the sentence:
On Monday morning, I felt like…..
"Someone had deflated my airbed!!!" (Marie) Airbed at a festival, La-Dada!
Well that's then. Two days of quality music, three nights of utter insanity, 49,985 crazy festival folk and about 15 nutters who I spent a quality weekend with. We all have the memories, we have the great pictures taken by Mairead, Waltzer and Brian, and Waltzers immortal website, the epitome of festival fitness to serve as a fitting reminder of what has been and gone, to remind us of what a savage weekend it was! Which is just as well as I don't remember a whole of it, I'm afraid I was very, very drunk! Rock N' Roll!
- Luke Ryan
What was your funniest moment of Oxegen
Most annoying moment/event/person
What time you realised you weren't going to get laid?
Prob trying to stay awake on the drive home and finally deciding to get out of the car and go for a walk in fresh air leaving kate and brig to ponder my sudden absence from the driving position, only to be chased by large barking dog in some dark laneway near Kilkock! Kate and brig thought i had gone off to pee in some bushes, as if!!!
Maniac driving down,
Tri dancing like a mad thing at The Libertines.
At a quarter to seven on Saturday morning; telling luke that it was half eleven and watching him franticly make a sandwich and drink a beer.
Its hard to know what exactly the most funnist moment was but one thing that stands to mind was the lenghty discussion on how to make Alan Rapples face more interesting as he felt it wasnt being used to its full potential! Hence the moustache and goatee!
"YOU SPILLED THE COCO POPS, they're f'n everywhere!!" Heard from the tent next to us at 6 am on Saturday morning
Waltzer falling around the campsite hammered when the rest of us were still putting up tents and hadn't had a drink yet!!
Niall crashing out as usual on saturday afternoon! Hoped he'd make the full festival but we should have known better! Ah poor guy ya have to pity the fool who falls asleep!
Prob driving down when I should ahve got about 20 points on my drivers license
A queue of girls in front of me at the portaloos. One went in and locked the door. Her three "friends" then managed to unlock the door with a coin and pulled the door wide open to to display the girl sitting on the toilet with her pants and underwear around her ankles.
Teenager pushing his friend to the ground to head a sponge ball back to us.
Me beating the piss out of some pill head that was trying to hug me?
Remember kids, fashion has no place at a festival, but it might help you get in the papers!
Future episodes: Prague special, Lanzarote Special, Blackpool special... Hope you enjoyed this action packed waltzer.net. Come back in a month or so and read more ramblings and see more photos! Special thaks to Luke for writing a great article and Mairead for lending some of the photos on the interview titles!
Tri: Please tell me you didn't [show everyone that embarrassing video of me dancing]
Brian: It's me playing guitar for Aerosmith, mooning the crowd at Wembley, don't you worry, I'm in Aerosmith.
Still no proper food eaten since Oxegen
Man feels cheap after swapping timetable for kiss
Memories, bruises all that remain after festival
Waltzer is a graphic designer who lives and works in Dublin. He likes interesting photos, funky web sites, fun people, minimalist design and retro toys.
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