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Electric Picnic 09 - Billy Bragg

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ATL | 14:27 UK time, Sunday, 6 September 2009

Crawdaddy Stage, Saturday 6th, 5.30pm

Billy BraggLet's break down the walls, let's rage against the machine - but first an 8 euro pint and some vegan falafel will go down nicely. It's time for the bane of the Thatcher government, the "red under the bed" - it's Billy Bragg.

Bragg was in Belfast the day Margaret Thatcher resigned. He held up the front page of the Belfast Telegraph to the crowd and proclaimed "My work here is done, I've got nothing left to sing about". Yet it seems that, decades on, the pillar of socialist outcry is still beating his drum, or strumming his old electric guitar.

He kicked off the set with 'Accidentally Waiting To Happen', a call to arms against fascism. The crowd of punters were transported into his world for a mere hour as Bragg rattled through his back catalogue. 'Greetings To The New Brunette' was a highlight of the set. The tent was packed out and the atmosphere was almost revolutionary. Maybe it's the fact that we're in the midst of a crippling recession and Bragg's brand of protest folk rock is coming in to its own again, or maybe it was the tent's proximity to the hippy underworld that is the Body and Soul commune that drew such a crowd. Whatever it was, more power to it!

Protesting Visteon workersDescribe in a tweet: Old socialist maestro still got it.

Good Vibrations: Dialogue with the protesting Visteon workers in the front row. "Yeah man, I'm from Dagenham, I feel your pain" was Bragg's response.

Life's a Beach: Idiots in the crowd calling the Bragg-master a fascist... like... come... on.

EP Rating: 6/10

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