The musical jukebox of Radio 1’s Big Weekend officially kicked off the UK’s festival season , featuring a huge array of artists, hailing from all corners of the musical globe. Having kicked off the previous night in George Square in typical club anthem fashion, and ended with a shoeless Nick Grimshaw nearly carried off into the depths of the Arches, Glasgow was more than ready for the main event. Unfortunately , One Direction weren’t. Fresh off the plane from Dublin in the midst of their world tour , pop’s golden boys lacked the charisma required to open a festival. They carried out the motions of a lifeless act, opening the main stage with a whisper instead of the much longed for bang expected from the X-factor spawn.
Thankfully, more was found from the rest of Saturday’s impressive line up. Within the New Music We Trust tent, Lorde demonstrated her huge voice, intricate lyrics and demanding stage presence; although that might have been down to her questionable dance moves. Finishing her show in an unforgettable gold ball gown, the young artist from New Zealand is arguably the best thing to come out of there since Frodo left the Shire.
In the same talented tent, Bombay Bicycle Club flaunted their latest album- So Long, See You Tomorrow with all the flair and pizzazz expected from the indie -rock kings. Playing against an artful backdrop, the group lived up to their ‘Bombay’ name during their single Feel featuring a distinctive Bollywood infused sound . As well as this, a nostalgic 80’s vibe heavily influenced their show, resulting in a fun and vibrant performance, only slightly dampened by the crushing sweaty mass of teenage bodies. I mixed so much DNA, it’s disgusting.
Reverting back to the Main Stage for the remainder of the day’s festivities , with the King of Soul; the wonderful Pharrell Williams. The soothsayer of Funk and RnB, accompanied with an entourage that emanated the pure essence of cool, dominated the stage. The Get Lucky singer dragged the focus back onto the main stage, performing a collaboration of musical numbers, including Snoop Dogg’s ( Or is it Lion these days..?) Drop it like its Hot and Gwen Stefani’s Hollaback Girl. Pharrell showed a great connection with the crowd, even at one point venturing down onto the front row to serenade to a very startled young lady/woman/girl/female. This was obviously accompanied by the rapid flashing frenzy of this generation’s smartphones. Keeping it real Glasgow.
It goes without saying that the Saturday of the Big Weekend would not have been as memorable as it was without that Coldplay performance. They came. They sang. They conquered. Everyone cried. Chris Martin, forever the people’s champion, demonstrated just how in touch he was with the Glaswegian culture , as he sipped on a can of IRN BRU and altered the well loved Here we fucking go chant, changing it to Here we got to go during the final song- awwk, bless you Chris. Featuring both a collection of Coldplay crooning classics – Yellow, Clocks and some from their newest album Ghost Stories, Chris Martin and his crew wowed the crowd, creating one of the most hauntingly beautiful and poetic moments in festival history. The rain fell, the lights danced, confetti billowed around us and the crowd was unified for an unforgettable rendition of Fix You. The lights guided us home , closing the second night of a very promising festival.
Good for you Radio 1 .
By Annabeth Wilson