T in the Park Friday

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T in The Park
There’s an earthquake at Balado. It starts with the euphoric rumble of stadium dance titans Faithless, the bands lead singer shaman-buddha Maxi Jazz bedazzling the T in the Park Main Stage masses with smilingly infectious enthusiasm. And a maximum jazzily blue kilt.
Main Stage headliners Muse, fresh from their Glastonbury triumph, once again proved that they’re one of the greatest live bands in the world. They began with the glitterbeat stomp of Uprising, roared through the Queen-go-Abba sonic pomp of United States Of Eurasia, shook the ground with hymnal-prog of Map Of The Problematique, and strafed the hills of Perthshire with a bunch of big green lasers.
Also filling the night sky: the sound of tens of thousands of fans singing along to Starlight, and to Muses’ legendary cover of Feeling Good, a song made famous by Nina Simone. It was all-round epic stuff, and another glorious triumph from one of the festival’s perennial favourites.
Another cherished son of T in the Park was making a huge noise in the King Tut’s Wah Wah Tent. In 2009 Calvin Harris played in the open air in the afternoon, launching his second album with a sunshine-filled party. One year later, after a years worth of touring and writing songs for the likes of Kylie Minogue and Example, Dumfries beanpole house maestro was top of the bill in the atmospheric gloom of T’s totemic tent.
Harris was rocking the lasers as well, and a genius piece of onstage wardrobe to rival Maxi Jazz’s crowd-pleasing plaid: the new Scotland football top (2012 version). Throw in singalonga anthems Ready For The Weekend and Colours, and for a minute it felt like Harris had stolen the T in the Park opening night crown from Muse but then, over on the Radio 1/NME Stage, a multi-limbed extravaganza was going off in all directions. Dancers and rappers wearing sci-fi armour. A disco-diva sporting clobber suggesting shed just beamed down from the deck of the Starship Enterprise. A hyperactive singer rocking an asymmetrical Mohawk – Black Eyed Peas arena-filling E.N.D. world tour had touched down in Scotland, and they weren’t leaving until they’d taken control of some more hearts and hands.
And, at 11.45pm, they dropped their bomb: I Gotta Feeling, the party anthem to end all anthems, roared into life, accompanied by a blizzard of confetti and the most rousing T in the Park mass chorus this side of a Proclaimers greatest hits set. Earlier, band leader Will.i.am had talked of the challenge of rocking a festival crowd. “There’s no time for comfort”, he said. “You got to have energy

Published on 17 July 2010 by Ben Robinson

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