Virgin Festival 08 Playlist
I ask you, dear readers, where can you see Noel Gallagher get beat up by a random man, stand shoulder-to-shoulder with pop DJ Moby, and rock out to some of the best British bands of our time? The answer, of course, is the Virgin Festival, now in its third year in Canada. We were there to watch, listen, and deliver the goods on the highlights of VFest.
Aside – The Weakerthans
Though this Winnipeg band has been touring for years, a lot of people are still unfamiliar with their work, hence their tendency to tour the college circuit. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t darned good. Their set at VFest was not only tight, it was emotional and amazing. The crowd was devoted (if not cultish) and sang along to every song. “Aside” is definitely a personal favourite from the band, its charm exceeding its catchability. All in all, a great song with great lyrics.
Best lyrics: And I'm leaning on this broken fence / Between past and present tense / And I'm losing all those stupid games / That I swore I'd never play / But it feels okay
Take Her Back – The Pigeon Detectives
Yup, it’s straightforward British garage rock. But you can’t help bopping around to it because it’s undeniably catchy. That’s why The Pigeon Detectives, though not altogether original, are still critically acclaimed and sought after. There’s definitely a bit more of a fun vibe with this band and this song proves that The Pigeon Detectives can rock with their Britrock counterparts. Not only does the band know how to have fun, they definitely put on an energetic show.
Best lyrics: He’s not sure what he should do / She’s 17 he’s 22 / Is that too much of a difference? / So instead look what he done / He found a girl who’s 31 / Is that too much of a difference?
Have a Nice Day – Stereophonics
Definitely a heavy-hitter in Britain, The Stereophonics never quite hit that mark here in Canada. But they are still well-loved and they still know how to rock. They played this old favourite at VFest and the crowd loved it – singing along and dancing was de rigeur. It definitely brightened our day and made it better than nice.
Best lyrics: Lie around all day / Have a drink to chase
I Love to Move in Here – Moby
This little DJ came to market and he stayed to impress – the crowd packed itself into a small tent to partake in Moby’s electric beats. Everyone had to submit that Moby did a wicked job at revving up the crowd and keeping them wound up for the rest of the evening. The show ended a great line-up of awesome DJs throughout the weekend.
Best lyrics: See song title
Wonderwall – Oasis
I don’t really want to mess around. Oasis is the sort of band whose hits define them (as opposed to those epic bands whose b-sides and rarities define them) and they do amazingly well when they stick to the path. That’s why they’d be crazy to do away with their hits like “Wonderwall”. This song not only represents an era in music, but the band in its youthful prime. It’s been covered by everyone and it’s still darn catchy after hearing it in elevators and supermarkets everywhere. The band played this song at Virgin Fest even though Noel Gallagher suffered a broken rib after someone from the audience jumped onstage and attacked him.
Best lyrics: And all the roads we have to walk along are winding / And all the lights that lead us there are blinding
Do You Wanna – The Kooks
Though I’ve seen this band four times, I’m always entertained and I’m always surprised at how much they improve from show to show. The Kooks’ set at VFest was met with thousands of fans ready to partake in their brand of clever but well-composed tongue-in-cheek rocking out. The band wowed the crowd with a great performance of “Do You Wanna”, in the middle of which they asked the audience to sit on the grass – and everyone did! It was amazing.
Best lyrics: I know you wanna make love to me
The Prayer – Bloc Party
Definitely the cream of the crop in terms of British bands right now, Bloc Party is able to weave electronic music into Britrock seamlessly and convince us that this brand of ingenuity has been around for years. For their ability to write amazing lyrics, beats, music, and appeal to a wide audience, we give Bloc party a giant high five. Like, imagine someone with really big hands giving them a high five. Why did we choose this song? Because it’s just one of the many amazing ditties from this band.
Best lyrics: Make me unstoppable
Kids – MGMT
Though MGMT doesn’t always know what kind of band it would like to be (and sometimes lacks cohesion), their danceable songs are so danceable, you almost forget about their downfalls as a band. This song is by far a favourite of mine, even more so than their huge hit “Time to Pretend.” The haunting nature of the song makes it an instant classic and great to groove to.
Best lyrics: Control yourself / Take only what you need from them
Written by: Nicolle Weeks