EDitorial ± 3-Dec-2003

No Sleep 'Til Nottingham

A dismally damp Saturday afternoon in late November, half-time in the footy — Cardiff 0 Ipswich 2 — and I'm setting out on a 300 mile round trip to see an up-and-coming electric beat group.

Named, I believe, after a track on a Talking Heads soundtrack album, these boys have recently been voted Best Act In The World by Q magazine, if you take that as a recommendation. For the third year in a row, natch. So it's destination Nottingham Arena (A14/A1/A52) to see the mighty Radiohead.

Muse were playing on the previous night. Busted later this week. Atomic Kitten next year. It's all happening in Nottingham.

At 7.30pm on the dot, Asian Dub Foundation, the night's support band, begin the construction of a very fine wall of noise. Can't make out too much of what they're saying though they don't seem too fond of (a) Bush, (b) Blair, nor (c) Bush & Blair. They sure ain't sitting on the fence, that much is clear.

Shortly before 9pm the 'Head take the stage and launch into the first of what will be many tracks from the latest album, Hail To The Thief, the mathematically contentious and compelling 2+2=5. Two hours and two encores later they exeunt, one at a time, to the sounds of electronic noodling, leaving a sated and spent crowd.

I try to sing along
I get it all wrong
— 2+2=5, Radiohead

Some personal highlights:

  • There There – both guitarists up front pounding the drums
  • Idioteque – I'll laugh until my head comes off, indeed
  • Sit Down, Stand Up – the raindrops, the raindrops, the raindrops
  • You And Whose Army? – seedy and sinister
  • and not forgetting Thom Yorke's CND T-shirt – where'd he get that from?!

Be seeing you!