Apologies for the length of time to post anything post-Byron. Was a hectic weekend followed by a hectic day or two at work.
My reviewing skills may not be of the class of some of the correspondents who have provided excellent reports here (I'm buggered if I can remember half of the songs sometimes, let alone samples!) but I'll give it a shot.
I'll go with the hazier of the two days - the Saturday - first. Some quick random thoughts. From the main tent my picks were: Drag (nice acoustic harmony etc from Darren from Powderfinger), Rocket Science (stonking organ, pretty familiar set for those who have seen them before), Black Rebel Motorcycle Club (got the place jumping big time), Gomez (heavy on the new album, got a rousing encore though Whippin Piccadilly).
Mix tent: If I heard Without Me once, I heard it 100 times over the weekend. Just about everyone seemed to be dropping it into mixes. Didn't spend as much time here on Sat as schedules/friends etc didn't always fit. Gerling were typically manic, caught the end of Katalyst and wished I'd seen more; was disappointed with what I saw of Bentley Rhythm Ace - might have been my powers of perception but nothing grabbed me. They seemed to have technical hassles as well which might not have helped. But Dexter came to the rescue! Had the place roaring - I met up with some English backpackers the next day who were raving about him - the set was pretty familiar from what I have heard/read in the past. BTW, can anyone help me with name of the old 20s style "crazy-leg" jazz stuff he drops in at the start? Didn't stay for the Resin Dogs but a friend who did reported that it was sensational (a new song or two he thought?).
Sunday was a slow start but the Mix tent proved to be the musical equivalent of Red Bull, with Rhibosome, 2 Dogs and Offcutts doing their best to rouse the hungover hordes. Impressed with Rhibosome - they generate a heap of sound, bit of dub chucked in there, noticed Dave from the Resin Dogs getting down to them. Offcutts seemed a bit cartoonish at times (not sure what the skateboard leaps off the mixing desk were about) but they had plenty of energy. 2 Dogs threw in the likes of C+C Music Factory, Prince, Queen, Technotronix
Did some roaming after that - caught Spiderbait in the main tent (technical hassles in the first half hampered them) and Machine Gun Fellatio (as distinct as ever, debuted a new song 'I'm Going Down To PussyTown" and got the audience to sing along), before getting set for Doves. This was a bit of a problem, as Blackalicious were due to start during their set but fortunately, it took an age to set up Blackalicious so they ended up starting 30 minutes late. A spot of texting and I was able to see Doves (exceptional stuff, moody, passionate, swirly - I reckon they would have made a heap of new fans) before dashing across to the Mix Tent.
If you've got this far in this long-winded postcard, then well done and thanks for bearing with me.
Blackalicious really lapped up the festival vibe - brought the lights up heaps of time to see everyone, plenty of talking, audience interaction etc.
In addition to Gift of Gab (who started off on his office chair, one of the more surreal things to see on a stage) and Chief Xcel, there were two singers and their turntablist (whose name escapes me just at this point - sorry, but who dropped in some choice stuff - Beastie Boys Hey Ladies being one that I actually could name and recognise)
Some of the highlights were Blazing Arrow, Make You Feel That Way, A To G, Chemical Callisthenics, First in Flight, Brainwashers, Sky Is Falling
Having a chat later, one of my companions compared the set to Michael Franti's show with Spearhead last year and I'm inclined to agree. A great rapport and some quality thoughts within the music.
And before I forget, whoever was in charge of the between set music in the Main Tent gets a thumbs up for whacking on Since I Left You during the interlude before the Doves came on. Nice one.
Finished the day with Supergrass (plenty of energy, lots of singalongs) and dragged my weary body off.
Let's see how I pull up now for Livid . . .