Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Oasis - Heaton Park, Saturday 6th June

Oh blog I have neglected you! I apologise profusely. I can have no excuses. My behaviour is appalling. But you see I've been quite busy.

First thing Saturday morning I set off with a work colleague to Manchester for the 2nd date of the Oasis 2009 tour. I was a little apprehensive as the news had been full all day Friday about the technical difficulties which had plagued the first night and I was praying that it was all sorted for our trip there.

To cut a long story short it was an amazing day. But a long one. A veeeeeery veeeeeeery long one. Once we were settled in the hotel we got back in to Manchester city centre to have lunch and to pray for the torrential rain to stop. Someone must have been listening because by the time we emerged from the pub it was in to blazing sunshine (ok, maybe not blazing) with not a rain cloud in sight.

Although I've been to plenty of gigs before this was my first time at an open air gig and I was really looking forward to the experience. I've never been to a festival either and I thought that this could be my mini introduction to what it might be like.

The Enemy and Kasabian were supporting and were both good. The Enemy was a little ropey - sounded good but they just didn't have a lot of stage presence. Mind you on a stage that big that's a bit of an ask. Plus the lead singer was recovering from the food poisoning that had stopped him playing on the Thursday night. Kasabian were brilliant. I wasn't sure about them before I went because I didn't think I knew that many songs. Turns out I do! I would definitely like to go and see them again and will be buying the latest album in the meantime.

We weren't very close to the stage at all. We had ummed and aaahed about getting there for when the gates opened at 2pm so we could be sure of being in the inner circle but we voted to eat and drink where it would be a little cheaper so by the time we got there they weren't letting anyone else in to the inner circle. We therefore got ourselves against the next set of barriers which were a good way away from the stage - we were at the front of the back of the crowd if you like!

Once we got that spot we weren't going to give it up so there we stayed for the duration. Mind you there wouldn't have been anywhere else you could have gone. The only way out of that barrier was to be lifted over by the stewards and trust me that is not dignified. So I steeled myself against the surge when Oasis came on and gritted my teeth, determined to stick it out.

I have some pretty impressive bruises on my rib cage from getting crushed against the barrier and for a moment it was a little hairy but I'm pleased we stuck to our guns. I'm proud of us! (Although some might think us a little mental)

Oasis were amazing and surprisingly (to me anyway) they're cd perfect. I thought they'd be a little bit rough around the edges but that wasn't the case at all. When I could hear them (difficult when 70,000 people are screaming in your ear) it was absolutely spot on. They didn't play that many tracks off the new album, 3 or 4 I think, something I wasn't massively disappointed with because I don't love that album, and instead stuck mainly to the classics.

In any gig you go to there will be a key moment for you that you will always remember. It's the image or song that will come in to your mind whenever you think about the concert. For me it was listening to Don't Look Back in Anger just as the sun had set. It's too hard to explain why - I just couldn't begin to try. But it was great.

The boys are very much as you would imagine. Not a great deal of crowd interaction and they were very much there to play the songs and that was it. The atmosphere was supplied by the crowd, definitely not like them. I was most affronted when they just left the stage at the end. People started to walk away and I was saying "Well that can't possibly be it. They haven't even said goodbye or thank you." How naive of me.

So yes. Great night. Terrible terrible terrible management of the coaches back to Manchester city centre afterwards. Whoever was in charge in that should be in some serious trouble. The police had to step in in the end to sort the crowd out which was almost rowdier than it had been inside the park gates. We eventually crawled in to our hotel bed about 1.30am, more tired than I have been in a long time. Somehow we managed to get ourselves up at 7.30 to catch the first train back to Hull where I was picked up by the boyfriend who just looked at me as I dragged my greasy carcass along the platform. No words needed.

All in all. Brilliant experience and I now so want to go to a festival - it would be like that but on a scale a million times bigger! Ah well, next year.
I've always been a little dubious about big concerts, probably because my first gig experiences were in the Manchester Academy, which generally speaking is a fairly small venue. It's more intimate. You feel like you can react more with the band on stage and feel more of a relationship with them. However nothing quite compares to the feel of a crowd as big as the one on Saturday, pressing down around you, all of you joined together in a love of the people on the stage before you.

It's a good job really because in 2 weeks time I'm back in Manchester again, this time at Old Trafford Cricket Ground to see Take That. It's like this month is about reliving my childhood.

1 comment:

Sophie said...

I want to go to a festival too!! I was talking to Jake about festivals and Rudi being over and he was like "OH YEAH, I've done Edinburgh festival. It was...crazy. Let's just say it was back in the days when I was still drinking." Ha Ha Ha.