Mugstock is a wee festival near Glasgow, but really nearer some of the leafier suburbs.
So BM was “working” here, don’t get any ideas, this was strictly legit, bursting oot of a blue Mugstock tabard that almost covered the decolletage (why are all these bust-related words in French?).
Friday was mainly about Emma Pollock, who gave another epically great performance, her drummer’s gigantic ginger afro has grown by another six inches or so since last BM sighting in May, pretty much a public health hazard now… Emma asked people to dance, which they did, while playing couple of tracks from non-current albums.As always for BM, ‘Don’t Make Me Wait’ has a riff of such monstrous proportions that it could keep Betty going all day (not like that, you naughty boys), just furiously tapping the foot, or bashing the head, of BM’s new hammer, while rearranging the Jack Vettrianos (former, and who is to say really, current BM client) on the walls of Betty Towers. Anyway – Emma was the pure class act and lang may her etc, this is her year for her abiding fans, and herself, plainly obvious from the stage comments, she could not shut up!
So Saturday came about, BM could review 8 hours of techno I suppose and like techno as much as the next pervert, sorry person, but distracted by work… after 6 hours it started to attack the vital organs, leaving BM feeling a bit sick. An interesting chat with headliner Silicone Soul’s dad ensued, had assumed he was a local here to complain about the noise, and hippies, and enthusiastic “festival mums”, give me a crimping break… In the morning the Dijon Five crew and Samba Ya Bamba had a bit of a drum-off in the carpark… BM has known this country park for several decades so this was surreal, but good.
BM is not going to review the Dijon 5 here, just caught the last 5 minutes due to work timings, suffice to say they looked quite immense, although BM does not believe that the inflatable unicorn was allowed to crowdsurf that night – maybe next time!
Stanley Odd were last on the “official” Saturday order and played a real blinder, old combining with some incredible new stuff, plus incendiary freestyling from Solareye, amazingly soulful singing from Veronika Electronika and a pounding accompaniment from the rest of the band, not enough time for full namechecks but all epic. The birthday incident was just hilarious and yes, ye canne rap while eating chocolate cake. Closer ‘Gone toF’ captures the ZGeist, again, like ‘Son I’ in that other fateful year, are we getting more fateful?
There was more action later on the Saturday when various Dijon people rapped, MCed and did other stuff to the backdrop of the most epic hula-hooping that BM has seen in a while – fair play girls.
Sunday finished the weekend and BM would have to congrat the organisers for such a varied and amazing billing, no really.
Early evening Sunday saw local and long running prog rockers Abel Ganz reduced (holidays, cannae get the staff) to one man on guitar, and a violinist, plus comments from his daughter at the side which were quite entertaining. Shame about the small audience because Mick and his violinist were very good indeed, a real openly rockstar voice which tackled original material and an incredible Waterboys cover very well – BM will need to track the Ganz down to their lair, as they were one of the first bands BM ever read about in 1763, wonder which bit of Hades that journalist is living in now – but fair play to ye Mick, and the daughter in danger of upstaging everyone is always good.
Things ended with the ridiculously pretty Sioban Wilson, who BM has admired for some time – she managed to hold a mixed audience with some really breathtaking songs, ‘Dear God’ being the most obvious, with its broaching of the subject of not being able to have children, or not, transcending any witty stuff that BM has to say here. However what BM would have to say is that only at Mugstock will you get a guy onstage playing the geetar in what appeared to be a Barbour jaiket, har har – anyway, Sioban is a star.
Last act BM saw before roaring into the night was BMX Bandits and they were quite good, Duglas very effusive onstage with his repartee, a few new members and a good run through some greatest, well misses mainly. ‘Serious Drugs’ still pulled BM’s plonker – oh no, well if you have read this far into a BM review then you do deserve that one… goodnight to one and all.