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There are some events and incidents which, by virtue of their sheer awfulness, are designed to remain indelibly linked upon the annals of time. The fall of the Roman Empire, for example, Margaret Thatcher's general election victory, the pilot episode of Dallas...and Castle Donington 1980.
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But you can't hold a party in the middle of a damp Saturday afternoon and expect all the guests to stick around to the end. Not, that is, unless your name is Slade.
Although hampered by the worst rain of the day, Slade conquered the proceedings and absolutely stole the show. It wasn't totally surprising. Slade are indesputably a Festival Band - they know the ropes - and they work their best at HM extravaganzas where their glossy over-the-top antics bash down every barrier.
Slade didn't stop to consider the problems. They merely marched on stage and rattled through almost everything they've ever written - 'We'll Bring The House Down', 'Gudbuy T' Jane', 'When I'm Dancing', you can imagine the rest - taking the unconcealed piss out of all the heirarchical posturing that generally passes for showmanship at such places.
'I want everybody to get up out of their seats,' bellowed Noddy Holder, summing up the absurdity of the situation. And everybody did. Mentally that is. For an hour, the sloth slipped out of the arena and sixty thousand fists punched the air in the traditional manner to acknowledge that Slade, at least, had made the discomfor worthwhile before the band launched a hundred bog rolls into the atmosphere and took their leave in a storm of genuine appreciation. Clearly, Blue Oyster Cult were going to have 'fun' following on.
Blue Oyster Cult already had troubles. The night before the festival, their drummer Albert Bouchard had caused the band's first line-up change in a decade, leaving the drums in the hands of a roadie and the Cult in something of a precarious position. Exactly what they didn't need after Slade...........

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