Latitude Festival Fan Review #2

Here’s another fan review of doves Latituide Festival set. This time sent to us by Paul, who won our recent competition for Latitude tickets.

It was the competition for me: answer the question, ‘who was the stunt cyclist featured on the Winter Hill video’ to find a free way to the Latitude Festival. I answered correctly (Danny MacAskill, in case you’re wondering) and promptly sped the short distance up the A12 to Henham Park.

The first thing that strikes you about Latitude is its clientele. There are no Hackett-clad, shaven-headed Neanderthals dragging their knuckles through the mud here. No, this is a family-friendly festival that welcomes Barbour-wearing, Range Rover types with curly-haired children called Fifi and Trixibell.

Negotiating my way past several pastel-hued sheep, performing androids and the ‘Lake Stage’ (a postage stamp pontoon in the middle of a pond, if you will), I spotted former barrister and TV presenter Clive Anderson lolling at a picnic table. You won’t see that at the V Festival, I thought.

The comedy arena is something else you won’t see at V either (unless you catch Oasis in August); but with over five hours to kill before Doves’ performance, I made a beeline for Latitude’s very own titter tent and sprawled under its canvas.

I spent the next two hours in varying positions of discomfort. Firstly, wetting myself at the toilet humour of Carl Donnelly; then squirming at the awkwardness of US comedian Janeane Garofalo (who could neither compete with English humour, nor the noise coming from the Obelisk Arena); before doubling up at the manic depiction of Ed Byrne’s marriage proposal.

Feeling suitably invigorated, I ricocheted between the bar and Obelisk Arena in readiness for Doves’ set. First, though, I had to spend the next 60 minutes standing my ground whilst being brutally attacked by gormless teenage crowd-surfers. Yes, I steadfastly endured White Lies’ pubescent mosh/ball pit.

Thankfully, order was restored at 8pm. Doves and Martin Rebelski rode to the rescue as ‘Jetstream’ echoed across Henham Park. Finally, all was good with Latitude again.

They galloped through ‘Snowden’, ‘Winter Hill’ and ‘Pounding’, stopping only for Jimi to comment on the plethora of wigs and “lovely vibes” that Latitude exuded. He was right. Even the young girl next to me (let’s call her Saffron; a toddler from the White Lies club) was bedecked in pheasant feathers that jabbed me in my left nostril every few minutes.

Around ‘10:03′, things changed. It’s clear the boys enjoy playing this belter of a song; and as a Doves aficionado, I’m prone to a bit of freaking out myself. But poor ‘ickle’ Saffron couldn’t handle the intensity of it all and desperately sought some protection from an obliging security guard. I could only assume it was because of my incessant whooping and not Andy Williams’ rumbling beat.

Luckily for me, help was at hand in the form of a mature, sensibly-dressed female who suddenly appeared out of the blue to ruffle Saffron’s feathers. She proceeded to pogo her way through ‘Kingdom of Rust’, ‘Black and White Town’ and ‘The Outsiders’, using Saffron’s shoulder as leverage. That’s more like it, I thought; a kindred spirit.

I was very happy now, despite ‘The Cedar Room’ almost reducing me to tears (I half-blubbed as I lovingly mouthed “you could be sitting next to me and I wouldn’t know it” in the sensibly-dressed lady’s ear). Mercifully, she understood precisely where I was coming from and didn’t request any protection. She just looked at me in an ‘ah bless’ kind-of-way.

And that was it. During ‘There Goes the Fear’ we occasionally glanced across with a nod and a wink and swayed in rhythm to Jez’s looping chords. Then we launched into pogo-mode at the end. Like you do. Everytime.

So, Latitude? I may not have enjoyed every minute of you (dropping my £4 half-eaten hotdog whilst being bothered by a wasp was a particular low point). But for one hour, it was all good. Thanks to Doves.

Thanks Paul! We hope to have another comp soon for some signed goodies.

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