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Page last updated at 12:50 GMT, Sunday, 28 June 2009 13:50 UK
Bands play 'secret' Glasto gigs

By Greg Cochrane
Newsbeat music reporter at Glastonbury

Crowd at Glastonbury for Spinal Tap
Spinal Tap managed to pull in a decent crowd for their Glastonbury performance

Take a turn off the main pathways at Glastonbury, and not only are they less muddy, but you're likely to find a few surprises.

Considering the festival takes over an entire valley with well over 100,000 people on site, it's understandable that some artists grasp the opportunity to play 'secret' gigs in far flung corners.

Kicking the series of hushed performances off, and before transfixing a huge crowd at The Other Stage later in the afternoon, Friendly Fires sneakily road tested their samba-influenced new single at the tiny BBC Introducing Stage on Friday lunchtime.

Little Boots
Little Boots played more than one set at the Glastonbury festival

Thanks to whispers about Muse, Coldplay and Arctic Monkeys playing, The Hot Rats - Danny and Gaz from Supergrass - must have been pleased to see so many people as they beat out 30 minutes of primal rock at their secret Park Stage show.

One of the worst kept secrets in Somerset was The Dead Weather's appearance at the Emily Eavis-curated Park on Friday tea time.

Jack White is somewhat of a Glasto aficionado now, having visited before with The White Stripes and The Raconteurs.

Looking deathly cool all in black, The Dead Weather's shrouded appearance immediately confirmed two things: 1) Jack is a far superior drummer to Meg. And 2) The Kills' Alison Mosshart clearly worships the ground he walks on.

With the pair looking longingly into each other's eyes, and their record Horehound not yet out, the crowd's reaction was one of intrigue.

Alternative sets

After flashing and gyrating through her ridiculous Other Stage appearance Lady Gaga disappeared into far more natural surroundings of Shangri La, a fantasia of fancy dress, circus characters and odd happenings once darkness descends.

Taking to Club Dada's cramped stage at about 1am with a bunch of inexplicable half-naked mannequins she played an adequately surreal full band set.

Saturday brought more treats. Futureheads were seen sound checking at 9am in the comedy tent. They later played on a bill with comedian Ed Byrne to a bunch of bewildered faces.

Fan at Glastonbury
Fans enjoyed some sunshine on day two at Glastonbury

With the afternoon sun drying the ground, the roadies dressed as the Tin Man and The Lion from The Wizard Of Oz gave it away, but something special was simmering at The Park.

"Surprise!" shouted Klaxons as they walked onstage to a field of gobsmacked faces - especially since they were dressed like it was Halloween.

James Righton was Edward Scissorhands, Jamie Reynolds a decapitated head and Simon Taylor-Davis Beetlejuice.

They thrashed through Atlantis To The Interzone, Golden Skans and a sprinkling of chunky-sounding new tracks with characteristic glee.

Marked solely on a scrap of paper outside, Little Boots played in the ambient surroundings of the Guardian Lounge.

It was all very relaxed, with the Blackpool songstress capturing the calm spirit of the evening with a short acoustic set.

Far weirder than some of the secret gigs are some of the bizarre collaborations. Both Jarvis Cocker and Jamie Cullum joined Spinal Tap onstage.

Meanwhile, The Boss himself, Bruce Springsteen, announced as "a friend from home" joined The Gaslight Anthem on the John Peel Stage.

Just some of the reasons Glastonbury's still the best festival in the UK.



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