LIVE BLOG

Stormzy. I have no words. What a finish to Friday.

Posted:
Friday 8:59 AM

Stormzy. I have no words. What a finish to Friday.

Anybody who has flame throwers shooting from the top of the stage means business.

“It’s been a long time coming, man” Tell us about it! Though we reckon we’ve made up for lost time today.

The sea of phone lights hoisted high for Blinded By Your Grace will be a moment that lives long in the memory.

He said he might be a bit rusty for Big For Your Boots. Modest. He didn’t skip a beat.

And then bringing out Dave to join him for Clash – take a bow, champ.

Reading, I’m glad we got to Vossi Bop together tonight. That was special.

Remember, if you’ve still got the legs, head over to Orange Camping for Silent Disco. Sssh!

That’s all from us tonight. Same again tomorrow? We’re game if you are.

That’s why Van McCann and the boys are one of the best bands the UK has ever produced

Posted:
Friday 8:58 AM

That’s why Van McCann and the boys are one of the best bands the UK has ever produced – slamming down an exclamation mark closing set for Main Stage West on Friday! Twice sounding incredible live. Pure showmanship. We even caught the sound engineer strumming air guitar. Usually the most stoic men in the whole festival.

Loving the black and white visuals too. Iconic. They even had the good courtesy to tease a false finish – consummate professionals.

Confession time… we had a tactical change into evening wear back then. From tee and shorts into hoodie and jeans. Letting the side down, as many of you are clearly more resilient to the elements than us. Who else has packed enough for multiple daily outfits though? We reckon some of you have!

We check in on Radio 1 Dance, which is bursting at the seams. It’s the busiest the tent has been all day

Posted:
Friday 9:39 PM

We check in on Radio 1 Dance, which is bursting at the seams. It’s the busiest the tent has been all day, proving that D&B can more than hang with the House heads. Feels like the place might buckle under the pressure. You lot know how to ‘av it, right?

There isn’t too much time to savour it, however, as it’s time to migrate with the rest of the flock from one end of the arena to the other. From Main Stage East to Main Stage West, for one of the highlights of the weekend: Catfish & Bottlemen.

Personally, I’ve been waiting a long, long time to see this band live. It’s time to let our hair down and rock out!

On Main Stage East AJ Tracey explodes onto the stage in a shower of pyros and launches straight into a lyrical flow.

Posted:
Friday 9:37 PM

On Main Stage East AJ Tracey explodes onto the stage in a shower of pyros and launches straight into a lyrical flow. AJ gives the signal, and his DJ spins back the track before cutting the music. We all know what’s coming next. “Open it up, open it up” It’s moshing time. Get your shoulder pads ready.

At the same time, Ghetts is commanding things over at the1Xtra Stage and captivating the crowd of diehards who have gathered there. Everybody seemingly muscling to the front.

We find ourselves drawn back to AJ’s masterclass, and just in time for him to bring out his cheerleaders. Not sure he needs the encouragement. With darkness slowly creeping in, AJ teases a guest, and Aitch bounds onto stage to join him for a rendition of Rain, before leading us into Ladbroke Grove.

Let’s not forget (as if you would!), we still have the small matter of Stormzy’s headline set still to come. The very best in UK Grime being represented here at Reading today. Our scene is thriving.

We’ve hopped across to Main Stage East to catch one of pop’s hottest properties, Mabel

Posted:
Friday 6:59 PM

We’ve hopped across to Main Stage East to catch one of pop’s hottest properties, Mabel. As if her auburn hair wasn’t dazzling enough, anybody know which stockists sell her outfit? Wowzas. “I wanna boyfriend” she sings. Form an orderly queue lads. We can’t imagine she’s short on potential suitors to be honest.

Tick Tock, her collab with Clean Bandit, is next. Now that is stage presence. Reading you’ve been spoilt today – and there’s still loads to come.

Back at Radio 1 Dance for Prospa, the moving heads are deployed for the first time today.

Posted:
Friday 6:21 PM

Back at Radio 1 Dance for Prospa, the moving heads are deployed for the first time today. Prayer calls for searching spotlights, before we writhe around in Ecstasy. The light show is going to be quite something later, once dark settles. Trust us.

If you’re gonna bring crutches to a festival, you should *definitely* be holding them aloft as extensions to your arms. I don’t make the rules.

Prospa rolling straight through to Franky Wah – what a dream. Somebody kiss today’s programmer from me. The scheduling stars really aligned for that one. The future of electronic music is secure in the next wave of superstars.

With so many acts coming and going, a delay was to be inevitable at some point.

Posted:
Friday 5:44 PM

With so many acts coming and going, a delay was to be inevitable at some point. Only this time, it’s definitely worked in our favour as we’ve managed to catch the tail end of Noizu’s delayed set at Radio 1 Dance! Bonus. A guy here is so excited, he’s doing commando rolls. We can relate. Another big up also goes to the squadron of girls in sequinned hula skirts who just sasheyed through the crowd and turned everyone’s head. That’s how you make an entrance. Summer ’91 – what a track! So glad festival season started soon enough for us to hear that live this year. Crowd are going wild for it.

From the raucous 1Xtra arena to one man, a mic and his guitar.

Posted:
Friday 5:16 PM

From the raucous 1Xtra arena to one man, a mic and his guitar. We’ve made our way over to Main Stage East for Declan McKenna. That’s one of the things we love about Reading. One minute you can be deep in the sweatbox, next you can be sat cross-legged on the grass, taking it all in. Good to mix things up.

Things start to get serious now. A headache, of the good variety, about where to go and who to see next. We have the likes of Mabel, Franky Wah, Aitch, Sam Fender and Ivorian Doll, amongst others, in a cluster of set-clashes. Hard decisions ahead. If, like us, you’re also in a bit of a conundrum, we find the best thing to do is go with flow and see where the day takes you. Spontaneity is half the fun! Who knows who you might discover?

We’re gonna start with some neon-nostalgia and Prospa next and worry about the rest later.