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This is me and my friends Lydia and Hilary and their brother Richard about to brave the rain of Reading Festival last year.

It was our 3rd visit but Richard’s first festival, um experience so we broke him in gently by just having a day Ticket for the Friday. Which worked out well as Mars were the support act for their favourite band My Chemical Romance (who I too hold a definite soft spot for – despite Mr Way’s current jegging obsession)

I had forgotten how much I love the atmosphere and sense of the ridiculous at festivals. The crazy outfits (including a love of Tiger costumes this year, which even Jared couldn’t resist during Mars’s set), the shouting of “Free Hugs” and of course who can forget the ‘Mobile Rave’?

For a self-confessed music junkie I also love the opportunity to watch bands I wouldn’t normally get to see. After positioning myself at the barrier and standing for 6 hours straight to have a good spot for Mars (hey us Echelon are um dedicated) I had the opportunity to sample The Blackout (only one decent song), New Found Glory (good fun), Rise Against (um I kinda learnt I had the ability to sleep standing up during their set), Bring Me The Horizon (SO glad I caught them, I’d never liked them on record but live they were amazing and I now own all their albums!), Deftones (awesome) and The Offspring (my big disappointment of the day, I’ve been a fan for a number of years and this was the first time I’d seen them but they didn’t seem to want to be there).

I’ll admit I was worried about how the crowd would react to Mars – I needn’t have been! They COMPLETELY won over the crowd from the first pounds on Shannon’s drums during Escape. Plenty of debry and mud had been making it’s way up onto the stage throughout the day (often in feats that challenged the laws of aerodynamics) but I saw nothing get thrown during Mars! I was so proud of the band I’ve loved for 5 years now completely winning over a tough Festival crowd.

My Chemical Romance were also fantastic, lots of energy and a surprise appearance from Brian May ensuring we all had a great time and were smiling (which my vocal cords weren’t after singing along during Mars’s set and then being busted totally singing along to ‘Welcome To The Black Parade’)

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