Coldplay bring fireworks to Radio 1’s One Big Weekend in Glasgow

Lily Allen, Lorde, Bombay Bicycle Club, Pharrell also play Glasgow Green

Coldplay headed up Radio 1’s One Big Weekend last night (May 24) with a fireworks-filled set in front of a 25,000-strong Glaswegian crowd, playing their first UK show of the year in support of new album ‘Ghost Stories’.

Friday had seen performances from DJs Tiësto, Martin Garrix and Pete Tong at George Square, but the action moved to Glasgow Green yesterday for the main event. Opening with ‘Paradise’, frontman Chris Martin told fans “I’ve been watching all day and I’ve never seen a crowd so good. Just give us the last of your energy.” The crowd lapped up the likes of ‘Charlie Brown’, ‘Clocks’ and ‘Viva La Vida’. Martin joked with the crowd about how, “a lot of people when they come to Scotland try to ingratiate themselves with the local audience, but we don’t believe in that,” whilst opening a can of Irn-Bru. He also repeatedly snuck in a few bars of One Direction’s ‘Best Song Ever’ – once during the outro of ‘Clocks’ and then again during the closing ‘Fix You’, during which he also engaged in the popular Glaswegian chant of “Here we fucking go”, albeit softening the words to “here we got to go”.

Earlier in the day, One Direction themselves got things underway amidst the usual choruses of screams, but The Kooks – who were playing the In New Music We Trust stage at the same time – still managed to draw a respectable crowd. their set mixed old favourites like ‘Ooh La’ and ‘She Moves in Her Own Way’ with a handful of tracks from forthcoming new album ‘Listen’, including ‘Around Town’, for which they enlisted the help of a local female choir. Following them was 17 year-old Kiwi sensation Lorde, who still made space for debut single ‘Royals’ despite describing the songs as “horrible” in an interview with the Scottish Daily Record a few days earlier. “It’s so mental to me that I could be in Glasgow, so far away from where I live,” she said, before re-emerging during the climax of ‘Team’ sporting a flowing gold lamé cape.

Over on the main stage, Pharrell drew a huge crowd, sporting an outsized fedora and taking the stage to Daft Punk’s ‘Lose Yourself To Dance’ alongside a troupe of female dancers. His hit-heavy set mixed tracks from new album ‘Girl’ with older collaborations, including ‘Drop It Like It’s Hot’, ‘Hollaback Girl’, ‘Blurred Lines’ and, of course, ‘Get Lucky’. Jake Bugg said very little during his 40-minute performance but kept the crowd happy with the likes of ‘Trouble Town’, ‘Taste It’ and a stunning ‘Broken’. Clashing with him on the In New Music We Trust stage was Bombay Bicycle Club, who managed to pack the tent out, and dedicated closing track ‘Carry Me’ to “all of our friends at the Glasgow School of Art”, whose world-famous Mackintosh building was engulfed in flames on Friday.

One of the day’s most hotly-anticipated acts was Lily Allen, making her first festival appearance in five years. Taking the stage wearing huge mirrored sunglasses and dancing in a pair of hot pink stiletto heels, Allen’s set passed largely without incident, the only hint of mischief coming when she confessed to the crowd that, “I’ve got a night off from my kids tonight, so I’m gonna get drunk!”

The setlist was a mix of old and new, with tracks like ‘Sheezus’ and ‘Air Balloon’ getting big responses from the crowd. Like Lorde, Allen also played a song she had previously been disparaging about – her cover of Keane’s ‘Somewhere Only We Know’ – albeit in a shortened form. She also dedicated ‘Littlest Things’ to fellow performer Calvin Harris, who she said she felt “sad” for because he wouldn’t get to see his girlfriend, Rita Ora, who plays today. She also revealed that she bumped into One Direction backstage, saying, “God, they’re cool, aren’t they? Harry [Styles] gave me a kiss!”

One Big Weekend continues today, with performances by Kings Of Leon, Katy Perry, Paolo Nutini, Kasabian and Chvrches to come.