Reading (Red-ing) Festival

Posted by eagly on Aug. 26, 2008, 6:52 p.m.

DISCLAIMER: Any jokes about it being reading (reed-ing) will be deleted.

I'm back from a weekend of live music and fun fun fun!

Last Thursday I set off at about 6:30 AM to the train station, with my huge sports bag containing clothes and toiletries, a backpack, my tent and my sleeping bag. It was a lot to carry and after a while became rather painful. We left the station on a train and got to Reading station at about 9 o'clock where we were greeted with a lot of people flocking to the festival site. We met our friends and set off in pursuit.

We got to the entrance, queued up, and eagerly anticipated an awesome weekend. My friend found a perfectly good camping chair discarded and claimed it as his own. We shuffled forward slowly and finally got through. We gave in our tickets and received our wristbands, and off we set to find a camping spot. We set up camp right next to the amusements, but my friend and I decided to move later on to a different spot. So yeah, we did some stuff, went shopping, ate some burgers, and chilled out.

The next 3 days were music days. Lots of fun, jumping around, nodding along, dancing.

Here is a list of the bands I saw.


Future of the Left - Rubbish.

Pete and the Pirates - Loved them, they were top notch. I now have their album.

Blood Red Shoes - Didn't like them.

Dizzee Rascal - Went for a joke. The crowd loved him.

Serj Tankian - My friend wanted to see him, I'm not a fan. Boring.

Biffy Clyro - Top notch. "Who's got a match" was super!

The Enemy - Also top notch.

The Fratellis - Great stuff. Lots of songs to jump around to.

Vampire Weekend - One of the highlights of the weekend. Superb band and really good live. The atmosphere was amazing too.

Rage Against the Machine - Amazing. Even if they were rubbish it would have been amazing just because it's RATM. They were superb though, lots of headbanging and jumping around. Lots of people were trying to get out from the front section because of all the jumping and stuff. I helped people over the barrier between jumping.


Joe Lean and the Jing Jang Jong - Didn't see all the set, but I liked what I did see.

The Subways - Simply awesome. Loved every second of it. A real crowd pleaser, too.

Dirty Pretty Things - Didn't see all of this either, but I saw "Deadwood" and "Bang Bang You're Dead" which are all I really wanted to see.

We Are Scientists - They got the crowd involved and were really good.

Seasick Steve - Legend. 'nuff said.

Flogging Molly - Amazing stuff. The whole tent was jumping and mosh pits everywhere. Brilliant band.

Bloc Party - Another great performance. A guy next to me decided to pour his beer over his head and it all went down my shoulder. Lovely.

The Killers - Mind blowing. Every song was superbly delivered and I was pushed to front middle so the atmosphere was even better. Apparently they cut their set short due to sound problems. :( Still amazing though. Also, Manic Street Preachers were playing at the same time which was a shame as I really wanted to see them. Ah well.


Alexisonfire - Really didn't like them, we just had nowhere else to go.

Plain White T's - I don't like them, my friend just wanted to see Hey There Delilah. I left before that song to go and see the next band. The crowd seemed to have infinite bottles to throw at these guys, haha.

Lightspeed Champion - Never heard him before, but he was top notch. Really good musician and he had a hot girl drummer!

The Rascals - Pretty good. Miles is just like Alex Turner.

Feeder - Love this band and they duly delivered some hits and some new stuff. The crowd was very thin however, due to Pendulum playing at the same time. Another shame, as I would have loved to have watched Pendulum. The NME tent was totally packed out for them. My brother's friend said he couldn't even get close to it. :( I watched some of their set online and they looked amazing.

Tenacious D - Excellent comedy rock. Great acting and stuff from them, especially when The Metal came out and they played the song of the same name. And the rock off against the devil. Hahaha. "Tribute" was awesome.

The Last Shadow Puppets - Pretty good stuff, although I became rather bored towards the end as a lot of their songs sounded very similar.

The Cribs - Absolutely awesome. The atmosphere, the songs, everything. Although they didn't play "Martell" which was disappointing. :(

Metallica were playing at the same time, but I'm not a fan and I do like The Cribs. Cue gasps of horror.

So those are all the bands I saw. On Friday night I watched I am Legend in the Lock Up tent as it turns into a cinema at 12 o'clock and my brother was on duty as a Steward for the night. Then I went back to my tent and slept at about 4am. I woke up at 7am and started packing my stuff away. When I went to the toilet I noticed a few burning tents on the way. For some reason, people tend to go crazy on Sunday and like to throw gas canisters in fires and burn tents and stuff.

Speaking of toilets, man they are horrible! It's basically just a trough with cubicles above it. The smell is wretch-worthy. I went into one and there were faeces on the seat. I quickly left and found a cleaner (well, as clean as they get) cubicle. It was vile.

So yeah, I got back and my friend was awake and he packed his stuff up. We packed away the tent and we were off!


We were a few metres down the road and my friend says to me, "Hey Matt, I don't know where my wallet is." I was speechless.

Luckily I had seen that it was in one of his pairs of jeans the night before, and was able to point this out to him. I just wish he had said something earlier. -.-;

So then we were off!


Huge queue at the station. We got to the station at about 9:45. We got on a train at about 11:15. Fun, fun, fun. We went to Paddington, then to Liverpool Street and then I got off at the station near my house leaving my friend on the train as his was the stop after. My phone battery had died by this stage so I was unable to call my parents for a lift home. So there I was, lugging a huge bag, a backpack, a tent and a sleeping bag down the road for the 15 minute walk. I received quite a few bemused looks, but no offers of help. :( Everything seemed 10 times heavier than it had when I went to the festival. Finally I reached my front door, rang the bell and collapsed on the porch.

I can tell you now, I have never been so happy to take a shower and take a dump. Bliss.

So that was my weekend. Now I am home safe and dry and have gained 500,000 exp. A superb experience, and one I would fully recommend to anyone!

Thanks for reading (reed-ing, not red-ing this time :D) and goodnight!


Cesar 15 years, 7 months ago


PY 15 years, 7 months ago

What books did you read?

yeah sorry :)

I bet you were a sight for your parents!

SquareWheel 15 years, 7 months ago

You were at the Reading Railroad?

200 dollars!

Cesar 15 years, 7 months ago

Nuh-uh, SquareWheel, you sold me Reading Railroad in order to get Marvin Gardens!

firestormx 15 years, 7 months ago

I love music festivals.

And holy shit, you saw RATM?! I WANNA SEE THEM. >:(

Also, Alexisonfire is awesome, eff you. >_>

SquareWheel 15 years, 7 months ago

Alexisonfire isn't my cup of tea. But Saturday had some awesome bands.

OBELISK 15 years, 7 months ago

I don't think Serj is boring at all.

Seeing RATM must have been like, a once in a lifetime experience. Lucky eagly.

Jabberwock 15 years, 7 months ago

Sounds like some good stuff there (well, some not-so-good stuff, too, such as Plain White T's - but good stuff too). Vampire Weekend, especially - I got there album a few weeks ago, and I really dig it. Good to hear they're worth seeing live; if I ever get the chance, I will.

My brothers (whose taste I trust) like The Killers and Bloc Party, but I've never really listened to either much.

Biggs 15 years, 7 months ago

So, uh, I…guess this isn't about books then.

What a crappy and misleading name for a festival.

But Tenacious D is good so I won't totally condemn the thing.

SixWinged 15 years, 7 months ago

Alexisonfire is good. v___v