Monday, 19 July 2010

Saturday Night at Latitude - Belle and Sebastian

After Crystal Castle, came Belle and Sebastian. I am not sure if you're familiar with either, but they go together like paper cuts and lemon juice. B&S are back on stage after four years, and initially, as I watch the crowd disappear over the hill to go and see the XX, I am worried that nobody will remember them or care enough to stay. But the XX fans' disappearance revealed the solid block of hardcore B&S supporters glued to the barriers under the stage, and soon more tigermilkers and sinisters descended from the trees and came out of the forest where they hid from Crystal Castle to fill the field with the nicest crowd you'll ever see. Strangers high-five-ing from the top of their mate's shoulders, people hopping and skipping, singing along to every word (from the early albums, at least) and children blowing bubbles with bubble machine-guns (here's to modern hippies).
Belle and Sebastian might not be the most visually stimulating band, they generally just play standing quite still, as Stuart Murdoch hops about the stage alone, but they compensate well, getting 20 kids from the crowd on stage to dance, playing an improvised Stones cover, and generally relying on the kind of audience who were following them when nobody knew they existed, and just can't believe they're seeing them live, playing 'Fox in the snow', again.

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