Download Festival 2009 as reviewed by text message

Can You Gig It?, Festival News

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Did you watch the live feed of the Download Festival at the weekend? I watched the odd bit, but to be honest I didn’t really need to because I had arranged something far better.

Using cutting-edge 21st century technology, my friend Clive agreed to contact me regularly with text messages LIVE from the scene! Why watch the event from the comfort of your own home when you can have someone in a field, getting progressively more drunk, sending you pithy live updates?

I was pretty jealous not to be going to the event, so I eagerly awaited Clive’s opening salvo from the heart of the rock. It arrived at 9.30pm on the Thursday. I excitedly opened it up:

Been spending 1:30 trying to find somewhere to pitch our tent.

My envy now at Hulk-like levels of greenness, I had to wait a further hour and a half for the next message, which arrived dripping in metal madness:

Tent is set up. Onto my third beer. Almost time to explore.

I waited with baited breath for the next dispatch. Who knows what larks Clive would get up to once the three beer mark had been passed? Clearly the fun was so mind-melting that it prevented him from texting any details. I can only assume he found himself handcuffed for some reason.

By Friday Clive had clearly recovered from whatever dark drama Thursday evening had presented because, joy of joys, the next update included photographic evidence of the rock n’ roll carnage that was going down at Castle Donington. A photo came through of some MEXICAN WRESTLING, a development which was by no means diminished by the fact that I had seen just such an event close-up myself a few months earlier.

Unfortunately, it was at this point that the crushing limitations of my telecommunications device were exposed. With my phone apparently unwilling to allow me to transfer the photo from my phone to my laptop, I’ve gone the extra yard and taken a photo of the photo as it appeared on my handset:


It’s like being there, isn’t it? The reflection of the camera, meanwhile, makes it feel like you’re a celebrity watching the event while being papped. Yes it does. It does.

Having received the image of the Mexican Wrestling, I felt sure that further first-hand photographic evidence would be forthcoming once Clive started, you know, actually watching some bands. I can only assume the moshpit during Limp Bizkit’s set was a right shitstorm however, because of that experience Clive would only disclose:

Watched limp bizlit who were very good

The typo and the unwillingness to give further details told me something disturbing had happened during the Bizlit’s set, but I suppose it could just be the trauma of having to admit Mr Durst and co were not total shite.

Whatever it was that was preying on my correspondent’s mind was soon forgotten, however, as he braved a viewing of another act you thought had died out long before the late noughties:

Korn were brilliant. We were stood next to someone who got handcuffed by some handcuffs found on the floor. They went to the medical tent to get taken off

Aha! I knew handcuffs would have a part to play in this journey of rock! Although I didn’t realise you could be handcuffed by handcuffs – I thought the action of handcuffing was something that needed to be performed by either the handcuffee or another party. Apparently not.

The lesson? If you’re going to a festival this summer, beware of handcuffs with minds of their own.

Are you the person who was handcuffed by some handcuffs? Did the medical personnel free you? Leave a comment below and let me know. Assuming your hands were freed, or course. If they weren’t, I imagine it might be a bit of a trial typing out the incident with your hands behind your back.

So things were really hotting up on Friday, of that there was no doubt. What next?

Had a lovely sausage and mash yorkshire pudding. Filled the spot ready for FNM!

Clive’s unerring ability to hone in on the non-music-related details often missed by other music publications showed no sign of being obliterated by booze, this was becoming clear.

What was the newly-reformed Faith No More’s first festival set in umpteen years like? Well, Clive didn’t actually fill me in on that particular detail, but I’m taking that as a sign that it was so good that he forgot it happened/was rocked unconscious/lost his phone amongst all the handcuffs littering the floor.

In fact, I’m going to have to assume the remainder of the festival was a blur of frivolity and abandon, because I haven’t heard from Clive since that pre-Faith No More contact. I, uh… I should probably try and get in touch, actually. Hope he’s OK. Thanks Clive!

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  1. Kate says:

    I was not the person who was handcuffed by handcuffs, but I was one of the Mexican wrestlers. It was even grittier and Mexican in real life than that photo portrays. EVEN GRITTIER. Or more gritty. Definitely one of the two.

  2. CJ says:

    Thanks again my Chemical Toilet! I can always count on you for cutting-edge coverage. NUMBER 1 for festival fun!!

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