27 November 2010 | tim-764-291856
ATP - Alternative Television Programming
I chanced upon this on late night UK TV. I'm not really a music festival goer, though I once, for my sins, 'holidayed' in one of those communal chalets at Minehead, quite a long time ago, I have to add.
I do love my music though and have seen the essential festival films - Woodstock, Glastonbury etc as well as BBC coverage of others as and when they are shown. What suddenly strikes me about those ones are the jerk who constantly wants to say as much as possible for as long as possible. Even if you like them initially, such commentators soon get right on your nerves.
ATP, however is fresh, as the seamlessly and often surreal interwoven images do all the narrating and introducing. Or, the people and bands in those images do - caught by the people who care and who are eager, the fans and festival goers themselves. As such it does have a wonderfully natural 'we were there' ambiance and 'this is what we did'.
I get to photograph a few small music festivals each year and the best bits are the peripheral moments, where you muck in and then it's the best part of the year; a holiday. Isn't it great also that whilst Glastonbury has miles of security 'wall' and with headlining stars flying in by helicopter and pushing off an hour after their slot, ATP's philosophy seems to be of the original concept of one big 'jam', with no sponsors.
Despite all footage reportedly from amateur sources the whole film and its visuals are rich in variety and quality. Hypnotically gorgeous, actually. The sound tends to be thin and scrawny but isn't bad and can be compensated for on one's hifi amp.
I won't add anything clichéd and trite about how great it for a cult music festival in keeping it 'real'. I don't go to enough or know enough on the subject to qualify to make judgement but I rate this highly and loved almost all of it. Portishead, especially.