Blur on fantastic form at Isle of Wight Festival

Blur at the Isle of Wight Festival 2015
Blur at the Isle of Wight Festival 2015
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Blur served up a performance which will go down in Isle of Wight Festival folklore last night.

The Britpop legends delivered a set which will live long in the memory as Saturday night headliners on the island.

A packed main stage were given an emotionally-charged tour de force performance from Damon Albarn on a night to remember.

Many of the crowd believed they would never have the chance to see one of the great English treasures perform.

But, after a near nine-year hiatus, they returned after bickering members Albarn and Graham Coxon put their simmering resentment towards each other to bed.

The end result is a thing of beauty, as the revellers saw on the band’s first visit to the festival.

An opening which leaned on material from new album Magic Whip eased the crowd into proceedings.

But with a back catalogue so lavish it wasn’t long until the established hits were delivered.

Beetlebum was haunting, He Thought of Cars a pleasant surprise and Coffee & TV a tune to get the crowd swaying.

It took the presence of Phil Daniels on stage to whip the crowd into a frenzy, with Parklife a seismic display leading into a breathless Song 2.

Seeing Albarn so invested in his work makes witnessing Blur these days an experience to leave an indelible imprint on the memory.

There were no tears a la Glastonbury 2009 - but they weren’t far from the surface through an encore which is certain to go down as that special festival moment for those present.

Earlier, Pharrell Williams underlined his position as the great hitmaker of his era with a joyous display.

Picking children from the crowd and involving them in the set was always going to win hearts.

But Williams got more than he bargained for when he plucked one 40-something female reveller with a penchant for twerking from the audience.

Her efforts had the crowd in stitches with Williams’ display a visual force in a set which didn’t take itself too seriously.

His work with N.E.R.D was given the full treatment with Lapdance and Rock Star standouts.

Frontin’ appeared early with Blurred Lines, Happy and Drop it Like it’s Hot other high points.

Elsewhere, Portsmouth club night Beats & Swing ensured the evening ended with shapes aplenty being pulled in the Intoxicated Tearooms.

And Pompey vintage night, Hipshaker, continues to be a festival favourite.

The Three Belles and Group 2 were early-afternoon standouts before the Clone Roses packed the tent out.

Pompey’s coolest kid @Dylan_Does_IOW was present throughout, as the two-year-old kicked back in his cart resplendent in band stickers and Pompey logos.

*Keep up to date with events at the festival with a full report on the final night in The News tomorrow. And check for video and the latest from the event. You can also track our reporters by following @portsmouthews on Twitter or search using the hashtag #IOWfEST