Ed Sheeran, Electric Arena
Ed Sheeran, Electric Arena:
Who would have thought that one man and his guitar could draw such a crowd?
While Christy Moore did his 'elder statesman' stint on the Crawdaddy Stage, and Sigur Rós plied their 'thinking man's indie' amongst the main stage masses, a young man of Irish heritage drew a huge crowd to his Electric Picnic debut.
There were plenty of scratched heads when Ed Sheeran was added to the Picnic bill, but the young Londoner undoubtedly how to work a festival crowd, eliciting wave after wave of 'Hell yeah!' and 'Oh-oh-ohs' from the stuffed tent.
And sure, it's fun to sing along to a (particularly apt) Drunk, Grade 8 extracts some ill-advised beatboxing, and Small Bump encapsulates Sheeran's Damien Rice-influenced sensitive singer/songwriter schtick succinctly.
But does it actually mean anything? A cover of Snow Patrol's Chasing Cars is the piéce de resistance – a horribly hollow cover of an overrated, saccharine tune that sums up Sheeran's appeal as purely a purveyor of sappy ballads that places melodic hooks over real emotion.