Reading Festival 2014 review: Back to its rocking best

Queens of the Stone Age

Queens of the Stone Age

First published in Freetime latest
Last updated
by , Associate Editor

This year’s Reading Festival provided more in the way of good old rock, rather than the recent years of mixing it up with hip hop and the like.

And what a welcome change.

Reading regulars Enter Shikari, Bucks’ finest Young Guns, Hacktivist and Deaf Havana were just some of the best bands to entertain the crowds on the main stage.

This year they were joining headliners Queens of the Stone Age and Paramore, Arctic Monkeys, and Blink 182 for the bank holiday extravaganza.

However, I must confess to initially being a little disappointed to see Queens of the Stone Age sharing a joint headliner with Paramore. What?! Why should QOTSA have to share a headline with anyone?

These rock Gods are quite capable of taking all the glory for the Friday night opener, surely?

But actually, I have to admit, Paramore also added a certain something to the line up, with frontwoman Hayley Williams doing it for the girls, and completely smashing it.

But I digress - Queens of the Stone Age showed how to wow their audience with a faultless performance of all their greatest hits, old and new. Indeed their set managed to tease the audience with a few bars of each song to get the crowds guessing which gems were coming next, building the excitement.

Note to Reading – please invite them back next year and give them longer than an hour and a quarter slot..!

But the headliners shouldn’t take all the glory.

American alternative rock outfit Imagine Dragons blasted it out of the park. The crowd went wild as they played classics from their 2012 album Night Visions, which has gone platinum in 12 countries. Hits such as On Top of the World, and Radioactive, with its thumping bassline, managed to get the masses jumping.

I’d previously seen Saturday headliners Arctic Monkeys take to the main stage a fair few years ago, and as much as I love their music, I’d been slightly disappointed as I thought they could have given their set more welly.

But fast forward a few years on, and they have turned it around. The band have grown up.

They played their finest songs, including the crowd pleaser ‘I bet you look good on the dancefloor’ – and their performance was just sleek.

Frontman Alex Turner looked sharp, confident and cool as he belted out the numbers.

Call me selfish, but I love the return to Reading ‘Rock’ Festival. More of the same please.

Buy tickets for next year now – see

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