ATP 2009. Great music, rubbish programmes.

Just got back from ATP 2009 yesterday, which was great – some really nice new discoveries in the form of Harvey Milk and School of Seven Bells and some that I hoped would be good and were, namely Andrew WK and Marnie Stern.

However (here it comes), the printed programmes are just getting a little bit ridiculous. Luckily, Andrew has got into a bit of a rhythm now of creating a great and simple excel sheet which we can print and neatly fold for use over the weekend. The key word there is ‘use. Because try as you might, you could never describe the official atp programmes and paperwork as ‘usable’.

First of all, we get an odd foldable set of 3 cards which has the bands listed, but with extra flaps for folding which we can’t figure out. Helpfully, given most of the time you’re trying to see band details in the dark, they are printed in small, thin electro coloured type on black. Then we also have a trendy pack of collectable cards, with band descriptions for some reason printed in landscape, when it would clearly be easier to read portrait.

Call me a grumpy old man (because anyone who knows me, knows that is true) but when we first started coming to atp, we got simple schedules in dark colours printed on light backgrounds, in decent sized type that didn’t require shining a mobile phone on them to read them. All this weekend, I didn’t see one person using the programmes or cards provided whilst watching bands. The band info was also printed in a handy, decent sized booklet that could still be easily carried around. The newer versions can only have been done in order to appear more trendy or fashionable – but what’s wrong with usable? At the end of the day these bits of paper have a purpose don’t they?

Okay enough soap box. I don’t want anyone to think I didn’t enjoy the weekend because I did, just had to get that off my chest.

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