If Glastonbury is a muddy middle-aged man letting his wisps down once a year in a tie-dye toga, Leeds and Reading are stoned virgins on an unsupervised school trip, and Download is a bearded metalhead happily frying in a giant dusty wok like a drunk king prawn in an Iron Maiden T-shirt, then Latitude this year is a three-year-old called Horace whose parents are keen for him to bypass that awkward ‘girlfriend experiment’.
I read Luke’s blog about Latitude being the gayest festival he’s been to, and did a lol, because between the Pet Shop Boys, Little Boots in her mirrorball dress, the giant pink poodles in the comedy tent and the giant silver stiletto I’d seen all by the end of day one, it was already camper than all the flowery tipis in the campsite. And that was before Grace Jones’ shadow had fallen.
Don’t get me wrong, I loved it. The more comedy and rainbows in one place, the happier I am. Kids I’m not so keen on at festivals, and you have to wonder how much fun a lot of them are having when they’re being made to sit in a wooden crate while the grown-ups drink funny smelling pop and talk bollocks, and a giant scary lady changes hats a lot onstage. However, this does leave the amazing kids area free for anyone who wants to escape from kids.
The highlight of the festival for me was, without a doubt, Shlomo & The Vocal Orchestra, the world’s only beatbox choir. When we wandered into the woods to see what had drawn a crowd, we couldn’t see the stage, so it didn’t sound particularly exciting until we realised what we were hearing wasn’t a DJ, but a bunch of people making music with their mouths. Amazing.
Rumour of the festival was that Thom Yorke wouldn’t let any other bands play while he was on, meaning that everything ran about half an hour late from midday on Sunday for a bit. Well, when I say everything, I mean the music. Comedy was having none of Yorke’s whining and the Early Edition drew an extra large crowd of people who couldn’t be arsed with it either.