After partaking of the chicken sandwich - and after a detour to the VIP section with all its boys in tight trousers with big hair who may or may not have been popstars - it was time to go back in the main tent to see Orson. And it was good to note that the lead singer was bucking the big hair trend by being bald and wearing a black hat, thus meaning that had he wandered into the star bar I might actually have recognised him. Given that my knowledge of Orson doesn't extend much past the singles this was the first test of the weekend. What are you going to do, boys, to persuade me to lie prostrate at your feet? Are you going to make me bounce? Wave my arms about? Scream for you? The answer? Oh yes indeedy. Well not the bit about lying prostrate at their feet because there were thousands of people in there and I'd have got squashed. But the other bits - yes. Nothing in their set was quite as thumping as their rendition of 'Bright Idea' but they had that overwhelming confidence and command that led me to think they're a very good live act and I probably would part with pennies to go and see them again. If only for all the clapping they make you do.
Next up was the first of the bands playing the weekend that I'd thought that I really had to see - Razorlight. I'd just parted with money in the Woolworths sale to keep them in tight trousers for a little bit longer after all, so I wanted to be in the Main Tent when they were on. Only Nik and I were in the Star Bar when they started and it was only courtesy of our inante musical radar (and the fact you could hear the music) that meant we went colliding into the circus tent in time to hear their first song. So Razorlight boys, with your toe tapping, humming round your brains, songs, could you cut it live and meet the DA test? If there had been any doubt it was washed away as they launched into 'Somewhere Else'. I love 'Somewhere Else'. I would go as far to say that I would not trust anyone who doesn't love 'Somewhere Else'. And all ten thousand people in the circus tent seemed to feel the same way. It was the first time that I thought me, us, all these Scottish voices who boo when the English are mentioned - we're together in this. It was a wall of disparate voices all singing back, rebounding off of every surface and cascading through the tent. It was a piece of unexpected, total magic. 'I really, really wish I could be somewhere else than here'. Emphatically, totally not.
The only downside of this was that Razorlight decided to play the 'How To Screw Up A Set...etc etc' game because nothing was going to top that moment and again people started to leave, what with the need to get burgers and join the toilet queues that were snaking their way into central Dundee. Which all meant that the set dribbled away a little at the end. So, Razorlight, are you listening? If you'd have played 'Somewhere Else' last I'd have had to crawl out of that tent. As it was it became a memory that the rest of the set could never quite live up to. But don't take it to heart, you were good and it's one of my favourite moments of the weekend. Just think about the set order next time, right?
To the final strains of the Razorlight set it was a rush to the grandly titled 'In New Music We Trust Stage'. In reality this meant the smaller circus tent that - largely - had the less well known bands but the audience that was rocking their arses off. Seriously, every time I looked in the tent they were rocking. And for this they gained big respect from me. Now it was the turn of Dirty Pretty Things on stage, of whose output I know precisely one song. But with the kind of lyrics contained within that song - just how clever, and honest and broken are they? - I knew I had to see them. Because I like clever rock. It balances out the side of me that knows the dance moves to Steps songs. And it seemed like there were many, many more clever lyrics within their set and the whole thing had that wonderful illusion of rock.
The moment that the trumpet came out a scream enveloped everyone in the tent, we were ready and primed, in full singing voice.
"Bang Bang You're Dead!" sang DPT.
"Bang Bang You're Dead!" sang everyone back at DPT.
"Bang Bang You're Dead!" screamed the tent itself.
There was the inevitable mass exodus following the song, as the floor cleared leaving the hardcore and, erm, us but what a moment while it lasted.