EDitorial ± 18-Jul-2016

Latitude 2016

Novel experience at this year's Latitude (cf 2015). First time I've been with a friend. I know. Would Adam (for that is his name) keep up? Might he dislike my personal choices over the entire twelve hour period? Only one way to find out.

Straight in and straight off to that literary arena to catch the end of some bloke's earnest mindfulness Q&A, then on came Helen Pearson to discuss her book, The Life Project. Fascinating to hear about these groups of UK children ("cohorts") who've had their health tracked throughout their lives, inc. a bloke sitting right in front of us. Managed to edge in to the comedy tent to secure a prime spot for the incomparably hugely haired Reggie Watts, beat-boxing and marvellously messing with the mic.

Enough yakkin'. To the 6Music arena for some choice tunes from ex-Beta Band beatnik Steve Mason and back over the writer's bridge (a singular author, as Adam noticed) for a classy bit of Emma Pollock. Two Scots, note.

Funny words (inc. a tale of his autistic son heading upstairs on a bus) and poignant memories of Caroline Aherne from Henry Normal in the poetry place before grabbing a falafel and joining a nearby queue. Already started in that film arena is red Ken "Kes" Loach being interviewed by none other than Mark Kermode. Audience loved Ken, apparently as much for his politics, then everyone upstanding to allow yet more people in. Pretty flippin' hot by the time Wyrdoes ended and Adam Buxton appeared, followed v. shortly by schoolfriend Louis Theroux. Clips of wrestling, the upcoming scientology film and fresh-faced Adam 'n' Joe 'n' Louis messing around on the tube. Great stuff but good to get out in the fresh air.

First time in front of the mighty obelisk stage for a man-sized chunk of manly John Grant, striding around in shorts and rocking the Lebowski-era John Goodman look. Welcome bowl of chorizo paella in the sun, then back to poetry for the end of Daniel Piper (he's in four gangs) and a relaxing hour with Rob Auton and his new Sleep Show. Space to lie down and laugh. Lovely, albeit with those Chvrhces bleeding into the tent.

Traditional big bag of doughnuts en route to tonight's headliners, The National, first seen here back in 2010. Intense, musical, cryptic, their set ending with a sweaty Mr November before a delightful Vanderlyle Crybaby Geeks acoustic singalong.

Briefly in to see Josie Long and Robin Ince introduce Rufus Hound reading an HP Lovecraft short story. Final stroll near the theatre for the disco shed, late night tango and a robot disco. Those kids still going strong as we strolled away in the refreshing midnight rain...

...and still missed GoGo Penguin, Teleman and Suggs