September 3, 2013 - submitted by Greg, United States of America

Q. The band played Glastonbury in 2000, 2002, 2005, and 2011 to kickstart that campaigns for the albums released in those years. This beckons (yes, I use this word because of the song AROBTTH, used incorrectly?) the question of why Viva was left out. There was a festival that year, and it would've been a banger of a show. Was it simply because they weren't invited, or did they choose to not go?


The Oracle replies:

Although the band played Glastonbury the years you mention, it's not quite as you say. They certainly didn't play because they had albums due out but it made sense to play when they did have new music coming.
Their first appearance was in 1999 (first band on the Sunday on the John Peel Stage / new bands tent).
The following year they were invited to play the Second Stage and yes, it was good timing with the release of their debut album, Parachutes (July).
Their first headline in 2002 was initially an invite for Saturday but they were keen to close the first night. Coldplay felt very strongly about not headlining too soon. In fact, Michael & Emily Eavis persuaded the band to take the top spot as they were rather reluctant.
2002 was an interesting year because AROBTTH was behind schedule. Its release was originally pencilled in for June but due to its delay, the Glastonbury set was songs from Parachutes and new material that hardly anyone knew. There was a mini UK warm-up tour before the festival but the performance went down brilliantly considering AROBTTH wasn't released until the end of August.
Of course MX hadn't been released when they played the storming set in 2011 - voted the top Glastonbury moment by BBC Radio listeners - but they had a larger catalogue by then.
There was only the 2005 appearance that the album (X&Y) was released before the festival.

As you say, 2008 was the year Viva was released and there was no show at Glasto (I'm a poet & I didn't know it) but the band were also conscious they didn't want to appear every year. They LOVE Glastonbury festival but obviously had to say "no" a couple of times.