Review: Arctic Monkeys, Pyramid stage, Friday 11.05pm

The monkeys bring their romance to close a very wet day.

Stage: Pyramid stage

Time: Friday 11.05pm

Dress code: Mud-spattered everything. It is the end of a very wet day, after all.

In summary: The Arctic Monkeys don't do ad-libbing, they don't do crowd interaction, and they don't do encores. A lot of people don't like them as a live act for this very reason, but if there are any disappointed punters in the crowd tonight, then they're keeping quiet. It takes a certain kind of band to move every member of the audience at the main stage; but everyone from the front row all the way back to the tents is on their feet, delighted and singing in anticipation, even before the Monkeys begin.

They kick off with the unlikely choice of When the Sun Goes Down. Unlikely because it's neither their biggest hit nor liveliest track, then move quickly onto Brianstorm. The light show is amazing, like blankets of white light, and it only serves to illuminate the steady, wry stage presence of lead singer Alex Turner. As a showman, he goes in for subtlety and if the enormity of the event is getting to him, you'd never know it. He looks positively relaxed; cocky even.

They wrap up with A Certain Romance, but not before an appearance from Dizzee Rascal (see below), and although all that talk of "trackie bottoms tucked in socks" seems a million miles away from Glastonbury tonight, the title does seem particularly apt when it comes to the summing up the appeal of the Arctic Monkeys.

Highlight: Mardy Bum. Sounded fantastic, and the crowd sang along to every word.

Lowlight: Dizzee's mic was defective, and you couldn't hear him at all.

Unusual occurrences: Dizzee Rascal made a brief appearance for the Brianstorm B-side, Temptation Greets You Like Your Naughty Friend.

Mark out of 10: 7

Where they'll be in next year's lineup: It's is highly unlikely there'll be anywhere else but here.

Will be talking about this until: While it's a definite personal highpoint to the festival, I suspect it may not have quite earned itself a place in the "Radiohead 1997" territory.


Rosie Swash

The GuardianTramp

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