A friend of mine once referred to the V Festival as “the most middle-class of all the music festivals”, and they’re not wrong; observing how the line-up has gradually descended from a pragmatic mix of mainstream rock to the relative safety of easily-listenable indie licks has been a disappointment to many, though the festival has a reputation for attracting only the most casual of music fans. After all, a decade ago, the line-up saw the likes of Queens of the Stone Age, The Red Hot Chilli Peppers and Placebo adorning its stages, whereas now it tends to defer closer to more chart-friendly musicians, many of whom aren’t likely to be remembered years from now. That said, the V Festival has consistently delivered strong headliners, alongside a nice mixture of unknown gems, and bands that our parents might have had us grow up listening to.
The weather was certainly perfect for the weekend in Hylands Park, Chelmsford; blistering heat created a sublime party vibe that had just about anyone wandering around necking pints of Carling for breakfast, and snacking on some of the most ludicrously overpriced festival food you’re ever likely to find – I spotted a fairly diminutive pot of Chicken with Black Bean Sauce priced at £7.00, for one. Needless to say, it was a liquid diet for most of the fest, then.