Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Coconut DF Live @ Brewerfest Lincoln Wolds, Lincolnshire 21-23 July 2006

Coconut DF-Bosnia

This last weekend there was a 3 day event festival in the beautiful Rolling hills of the Lincolshire Wolds. Coconut DF was headlining on saturday night, so it was time to get my weekend bag, my Sony Cybershot T-1, escape from the hell that is Madrid city this days and travel to Lincoln.

I was warned there was a 'Heat Wave' in England at the time, but whatever it was going to be I was pretty sure it couldnt be worst than in Spain. And it was very hot indeed! So I decided to make my way to England on friday morning.

Dave Fielding&Becky told me before about this small festival and his beautiful surroundings, and to be honest it didnt dissapoint me a bit. I didnt go to Manchester this time because I thought from Luton was easier to get to Lincoln, driving through Peterborough, Newark only have to get the A1 M motorway.

The countryside wasnt that beautiful like the Peak District is I have to say, and I guess the fact that I went in the middle of a 'Heat Wave' helped to gave me the feeling that the fields looked very dry. It did remind me a bit the Castillian fields near Madrid.

So once in Lincoln I meet my friends Gaz&Ness and we payed a quick visit to 'Cherry Willingham Cricket Club' where Gaz is a member, and after help them watering the pitch for an upcoming game, we decided to head to the Festival to have our first contact with the place.

The Brewerfest is located in the Lincoln Wolds, on the way to Skegness on the East coast. The Festival is placed right in top of a hill. The views from there are fantastic. Beautiful golden-green fields with that contrast of darkness and bright light you can get in England. It wasn’t really that high, like, let’s say, on the Pyrenees but it was special nonetheless.

You can’t get a more typical English countryside than this, can you?

The whole festival atmosphere was very relaxing, and the place wasn’t crowded at all, and that is a bonus during a festival. There were even families with kids along with other caravan-travelling creatures plus the warmth of the locals helped to make you feel really comfortable.

Friday night was a rock-metal orientated night. Some of the bands reminded me of a pastiche of Pantera and Slipknot sound. Metal and Angst basically.
I didn’t pay much attention to the music to be honest, as we just arrived and we were enjoying peeping on the surroundings of the fest, looking the shops or hanging around in the Dance tent and also saying hello to locals at the bar and other people we were bumping into we had met already during other gigs.

We sat and chatted and drank and also had a great home-grown smokes.
Dave gave me some new design Coconut DF t shirts. Nice one!

Saturday afternoon, after some shopping in Lincoln city centre, we picked up Gaz' light & smoke machine equipment with his van and we drove to the Brewerfest.

The BBC weather report announced lightning and storms for the night and, although I thought it would be fantastic for photography, Dave was not sure to play with the storm. He wasn’t too keen on getting an electric curly hair perm.

Freaked out cows

Everything was sorted though, as the fest management had an extra tent with a stage ready.

Here comes the rain...

The sunset was coming soon and we could see the loaded clouds coming in the distance. Stunning light, golden fields half with sun half with those dark, stormy clouds, the perfect mix for an obsessed photographer like me.


And finally about 6 pm it did start to rain, although it wasn’t longer than an hour. All the people gathered in the bar tent. A fest is not a fest without any rain in England, is it?

Over few pints we watched some locals singing and playing the guitar, and also some spoken word. The show that was due outside had to be stopped. Bob Cairns played indoors too, and I have to say he was tremendous with the acoustic guitar!

So, as soon as the sky was clearing and the rain stopped, previous approval of the band, we decided to unload Gaz’ van and following his instructions we started to fix the lights in the main stage.

It was very exciting and a pleasure to help Gaz and CDF as a stage hand although it was a bit hard after few pints I have to say.

'Vinyl Collide', a local band was on first, and then a DJ lined right before CDF, scheduled around 11pm.

Coconut DF

Coconut DF did their sound check and also played some 'intro'. More people were coming, the skies were finally clear and our excitement was increasing by the minute.

Mr. McGinty the DJ played a top set, about 45 minutes. Good dance-techno that made absolutely everybody there dance around.


As we were reaching the time, you could tell more and more people were getting closer to the main stage, others were sitting in little groups on the grass, all around.
As it was a hill, you could sit at any angle and enjoy the show with a perfect view.

Six bonfires were placed right on the middle.

Is everybody in...?...The show is about to begin....

This time, unlike during the last February gig in The Duke of Wellington, it was the full band with Paul 'Didge', Ralph Harris, and another percussionist who was supposed to play the drums, but they couldn’t fix everything in time. And what a superb show it was!

For about an hour CDF stormed the place. An intense release of energy

There are bands that have a better response to their recordings than they do live. With CDF it’s quite the opposite:

A great live experience!

It has to be mentioned that all songs/performances are unrehearsed; in fact they only rehearse every time they play live but you certainly can’t tell when you see them live. They synchronize their instruments perfectly, a balanced melting pot of African drums, Australian didgeridoos and those English swirling, echoey guitars.

Fusion is what the future is about, isn’t it?

Paul 'Didge' was fantastic, he was very pleased to play that night, as it was his first gig with CDF for this year. And it seemed as if they had been playing together for ages! You should see him playing the didgeridoo live. (He does other solo live acts, mainly in Dance-Tribal Techno orientated festivals.) I can guarantee you have never seen anything like this before.

The show lasted roughly about an hour and ended with Bosnia. Bit short if you ask me, but a 'speaker' girl announced that they were running out of fuel for the generators so it was time for 'Chucky', The Human Beatbox, to join them on stage. The cherry on the cake. He is really good, and I’m sure you will hear about him on the near future.


Coconut DF&Chucky

Right after the show we had a nice chat near the fire with the band. Everybody was nice and content. The show went great and the band was very pleased about it.

'Didge' told Dave they were planning a second set on the Stage tent, and they seemed up for it. I’m pretty sure the party went on until silly hours in the morning, but unfortunately I couldn’t stay as I had to catch my flight the next morning. I was anyway very happy too and very satisfied with my weekend.

Magical feeling.

Gaz on duty

And with the milky way above us.....

It was time to call it a night....

By Pedro Vila, somewhere in Arguelles, Madrid. 26th July 2006

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Delta del Llobregat Beach (Eurovegas Go Home)

A Natural reserve

Natural Park Entrance Plate.

Airport below

The Delta of Llobregat beach is pretty close to Barcelona city, driving there will take about 30 minutes in normal conditions. It's actually in the south, right beside the airport 'El Prat' on the way to Castelldefels&Sitges. The fact that it is fairly inaccessable and because there aren't the typical leisure facilities like bars, restaurants, shops etc... has kept this little oasis extremly calm and relaxed during the last few decades. It remains, without a doubt, one of our favourite beaches for its proximity, and lack of tourism [and annoying summer crowds].
Beach from Tower

The Llobregat river finishes his journey here, and right on its last meters we can find our Delta, which is also been a natural reserve for hundreds of different birds for years and years maybe centuries?. Mother nature is smart, here the river dies, but yet it brings so much life....And believe it or not, the waters are clean! This surprises me as not only is it so close to a big city, but the Llobregat River goes through multiple Industrial estates. Its also a bit bizarre to find the airport so close [I sometimes wonder who had the bright idea], but in spite of all of this, it is, indeed, a beautiful place.
River walk

We know about this place because one of our mates, Mario, has always been very interested by birds [The small furry ones, that is!]. He used to go there to observe them [there are some small observatory towers where you can watch them]. So I guess he accidentally found the place. You need to walk from the car park all the way from the river shore to the sea, which is a great way to enjoy the peaceful view. There are security guards on duty in the reserve too, and I think they shut the entrance after 8pm now, so no chance to get in there by car at night.

Jordi and Layla

My friends like to go to the beach after tea time, around 6:30-7:00 if possible. The beaches are less busy, and obviously because you have to be very brave [or stupid] to go there earlier. The sun is too strong, and year after year it is worse for the skin, even for us locals who are dark skin coloured for the most part.
Jordi Sunset

Only a 20 minute walk from the Delta there used to be a couple of small low budget camping sites, shrouded by pine tree forests and placed very close to the beach [See bottom of the pics]. Both had really crappy names: 'El Toro Bravo' [The Brave Bull'] and 'La Ballena Alegre' [The Happy Whale']. When I was a kid they were there already. We use to go to get cold beers from a vending machine. One of the camping sites is still open, but not for long I'm afraid, as the Barcelona Council policy is trying to shut them all down. . The others are already gone and this is the last one that still survives.

Kyte surf Beach
A bit further down the coast we can find Gavá and Castelldefels, places that enjoyed the rise and popularity of the 60's and also went through a period of decadence on the late 70's and 80's. These days are property prices are going mad, in other words, it is a place just for the rich. That's the way this life is.

On the last year we had a bunch of teens coming to 'Llobregat Delta' to practice 'Kyte Board', which seems is increasing its popularity amongst the youth. The first time I saw that amazing sport was in Dominican Republic about 5 years ago, 'Sosua Beach' apparently one of the best beaches in the world for such activity, and it seems that now it has finally come to Europe. They don't bother me much really, not like other noisy motor water sports.

Two tears ago there was a great 4 day festival in the campsite with Djs and MCs. Some Britons came to the event, mostly from Manchester, my friend Kwasi Asante and Woody AKA 'The Nudge' were there on the bill, even Bez, the bloke from 'The Happy Mondays'. It was a fantastic time.

There are apparent rumours that a 4th Airport lane is going to be made where the actual reserve is, and also there are projects to make Casinos, restaurants, cinemas, supermarkets etc etc .. The project will be known as EUROVEGAS. That would be a tragedy to be honest.

What the fuck are they doing to our city?

First la Barceloneta [The old fisherman quarter] with all its traditional 'Chiringuitos' gone, then the outregous Olimpic Village for the games in '92, and last and least the 'Forum' area near Badalona who has changed completly Barcelona Skyline.
Concrete instead of sand. Crap
We dont want to look like Miami, we are Mediterranean.

The price of modernity?. This are the new times?
I don't buy it.
We will keep going to the Delta Beach, as we always used to do. Its our best kept secret.
And I really hope they never change it.

New Forum area [The price of Modernity]:

You can see the area on the photo, on the left of the airport:,2.082767&spn=0.036448,0.059605&t=k