So, last month we got invited down to Bloc weekend in Minehead to take some pictures and write some words. So here they are. We headed all the way down from Manchester on the Friday with Don't Panic 's Manchester team and arrived in our "luxury chalet" after needing a piss for 5 hours.
Id never done a whole festival weekend before so it was good to have a house for the weekend rather than have to wake up horribly hungover in a large nylon bin bag. Something which sets Bloc weekend apart from most other British festivals.
We decided to concentrate on the dubstep and Drum and bass that Bloc had planned and set out for Youngsta our first set of the weekend. This was when we encountered, for the first time, a problem which recurred throughout our weekend. Although looking back It appears we just went to the wrong place for some of the sets. We arrived for Youngsta at 10:30 only to find N-type on the decks 4 hours early. From then on we were a bit confused. Youngsta had disappeared, (turns out he was on at 3 am in the end), So we went for a roam, caught some of Joy Orbison and Roots Manuva before settling on the FWD and Rinse Bloc. Fair to say Zinc isn't really my thing but Ms Dynamite turned out pretty well and The Zinc - Dynamite combo made for a pretty hype set. BBK were fun to watch and the night wrapped up nicely with Chef taking over the decks. With the Tron VIP and Sweet Shop well and truly burned into our ear drums we called it a day for friday.
Saturday was spent holed up in our chalet watching the amazing Bloc TV. I reckon despite the huge list of names playing at Bloc one of my highlights was the time i spent watching Bloc TV. The festivals own TV Channel is beamed into every single chalet and plays nothing but random animations, crazy B movies, japanese lesbian zombie thrillers and crazy adverts. Notable highlights include
Chatterbox - A film about a woman with a talking Vagina which has a successful singing career. SPOILER ALERT - turns out at the end her boyfriend Ted had a singing penis as well and they end the film singing a duet together on a cliff.
Penis Vacuum Advert - 3 minutes of complete bone chilling Penis Vaccuum marketing. Which didn't actually encourage you to buy one. More just informed you that one existed.
Attack Girls Swim Team vs The Undead - A japanese film which was so literally so random that when my girlfriend woke up i could not begin to explain what i had just witnessed. Ends with the heroin killing the villain by shooting a bright blue laser from her vagina.
We spent saturday evening partying in some chalets, another advantage of having a tiny house for the weekend, everyone is having a house party. In between the suburban frolicking we did manage to catch some Dj's. 16 Bit warmed everyone up nicely but then we got a bit confused and did a lot of wandering around. We did manage to catch joker finishing his set with Eyez and Pon de Floor. Before Pokes and Kode 9 took over.
My personal highlight of the weekend though had to be Congo Natty. Rebel Mc and Tenor Fly ruined Butlins. What made it even better was the juxtaposition of junglism with holiday camp cabaret style venue. When Congo Natty put the records away everyone was left wanting more and not just because the programme had promised a 3 hour set until 6am.
Looking back it doesn't seem like we saw that much music. But this is words and not time. Bloc was sick though. The lineup included everything you could imagine, the tiny houses were great and there was even a pool. But no one we were with ever got up in time to catch it. So next year, if you want to warm yourself up for the summer festival season book yourself into the Bloc Weekend and flex your mash up muscles. Bloc TV alone is worth going for.