Rigsy's Vital Highlights!
So, after taking three summers off (the work shy fop), it seems Vital is back, relocated and ready for action in Bangor this August. Six years that festival ran in Belfast believe it or not, and here's just a few stand out moments…. Snow Patrol - 2002
Snow Patrol - 2002
For two years, Vital lived in a marquee, a noisy little baby of a festival taking place over two days. An on form Primal Scream headlined day one, with Bobby Gillespie dedicating the bands set to Belfast producer David Holmes (while cursing the fact he was missing the mans wedding). But Snow Patrol quietly stole the show, finding a little form themselves after a run of slightly shambolic shows in Belfast the previous couple of years.
They even played a song for the first time, dedicating it to then ATL assistant producer Helen Toland. The song was called 'Run'. Four years later, with Vital all grown up, the band would headline to....well, it must have been near a million people.
Alloy Mental - 2007
One of a small handful of bands to play Vital twice, it was in 2007 that Alloy Mental played a show now officially recognized as 'legendary'. At the peak of there powers, the electro-punk three piece attempted to cram most of the festival into an irritatingly small second arena, causing a fair amount of distress both to security and a whole mess of irritated punters left outside. They could still hear, mind - Alloy Mental found that mythical '11' setting on each of their amps, while Martin Corrigan lost his mind onstage.
Kings of Leon -2005
If only to illustrate how Vital didn't always get it right. The Kaiser Chiefs in 2006 was a bit rubbish, a grumpy band going through the motions. But more confusing than that was Kings of Leon the previous summer. Granted they could play two Vitals in 2011, but in 2005 they'd just released 'Aha Shake Heartbreak' and weren't a festival headliner. The band agreed and, legend has it, didn't even know they were topping the bill until they arrived in Belfast. First thing they did was apologise, before a confused, rambling set by a band (temporarily) out of their depth.
Mark Ronson - 2007
Weird to think it, but at a festival in 2007 there was, for a brief moment, a great big fiery ball in the sky making things all warm and stuff. I believe it is called 'the sun'. Ronson provided the perfect soundtrack for what was a balmy evening, just off the back of a summery album called 'Versions'. He'd later get stuck in a car surrounded by 10,000 punters on the Ormeau Road as he tried to make it to DJ at a club in town, but that's another story….
Roots Manuva - 2003
2003's Vital was a bit rare - thrown together, with The Streets headlining and the likes of Nightmares of Wax and Zero 7 making up the bill. But it totally worked, with everyone mucking in and putting in a decent shift. Roots Manuva was DJing, which meant we were set to leave without hearing him perform 'Witness (One Hope)' - a track worth the admission fee alone. Sensing we felt short changed, a couple of hours later (and in-between two other acts), he got someone to whack on an instrumental version as he jumped into the crowd and gave us his hit, karaoke style. Worked for me….
Tennant's Vital returns on the 23rd and 24th of August at Ward Park, Bangor.
Details of the line up are due to be released on May 25th.