So that’s it. Muse. Adele. Coldplay. The three headliners have been announced, leaving arguably the world’s most iconic music festival with a line-up that’s less inspiring than V Fest. It’s like the Eavis family are a turtle, that pillock with a Kanye West petition is whatever animal scares a turtle, and now Mike and Emily have shrivelled back up inside their shell.
Luckily this is music, it’s largely subjective and you like what you like. So there’s absolutely no point in listening to anyone else’s opinion, because yours is the only one that matters.
Without further ado, here’s mine:
Muse are set to break new ground this year, by becoming the first band to have topped the bill on the Pyramid Stage on a Friday, a Saturday and a Sunday night.
Can anyone seriously argue that Muse are worth this accolade? Just a reminder, it’s Muse we’re talking about here. They put out three decent records in the heyday of angsty-rock, then decided they liked concept albums about space and released the same one over and over again at regular intervals for a decade.
We get it, black holes are cool and Tim Peake looks fantastic in a t-shirt tuxedo – but move on, there are other things to sing about.
It’s not that they’re a bad band, Origin of Symmetry is a great album. But so’s Korn’s Follow The Leader. If this is the criteria we’re working to, we might as well give Puddle of Mud a crack at the legends slot.
Adele makes me upset, and it’s not because I use her music as a cathartic tool to get me over old breakups (Nerea, Bex – I wish nothing but the best for you). It’s because it feels like the whole world is in on something that I just don’t get, and no-one’s yet been able to explain it to me.
It’s pop music. Dreary pop music at that. Don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with this – I like pop. But I genuinely think if you erased my memory, played me ‘Rolling In The Deep’ and some ballad off Avril Lavigne’s second album I wouldn’t be able to tell you who’s supposedly the messiah of music and who’s famous for divorcing Canadian rock stars.
Fine, I’ll admit she’s got a good voice, but so do loads of pop stars. And most of them have better songs. Surely Justin Bieber or Taylor Swift would be more up to the job? At this point I’d even take Carly Rae-Jepsen.
Mind you, it could be worse, it could be Sam Smith. Though I hear he’s given up music to break old ground in equality. They tried to book him, but he’s spending Glastonbury weekend blacked up and refusing to give up his seat on the bus.
I have relatively little beef with Coldplay, they’re a decent band. They’ve been around for donkey’s years, but are creative enough to stay relevant and have a huge arsenal of crowd pleasing hits. Not that you’ll care, but they’re probably the only one of the three I’ll actually watch.
But this is their fourth time headlining the Pyramid Stage, which is, again, a new record. Seriously, can’t we do better than this? Four times?
Forgive the name drop, but I recently had the chance to ask Bestival organiser Rob da Bank about this, he thinks safe bookings are inevitable:
“It’s scary booking acts. Ten or twelve years ago when I started booking Bestival you might get a letter or a couple of letters or someone stopping you on the street criticising your choice of headliner.
“Now, the minute you announce an act, whether it’s a headliner or anything else, there are hundreds of thousands of people that can attack you for your choice.
“It’s terrifying because you’re at the public’s mercy. I have to think twice about what I’m doing and really make sure I’m doing the right thing.”
So, in conclusion, Rob thinks it’s articles like this that mean bookers don’t take risks. It’s people like me writing them, and people like you reading them, who are to blame for Worthy Farm yet again plugging in baby.
I hope you’re pleased with yourself.