Tag Archives: Primavera Sound

PSSS PSSS, PRIMAVERA SOUND

I know, I know, I’m one week late. i should have posted this  days ago, but due to some circumstances I wasn’t able to write about this properly. Well, I did, but the draft was lost, and I was a bit busy and definitely not in the mood. Sorry.

After my last experience at Primavera Sound Festival, when the first set of tickets was available (for 10 minutes), I purchased mine blindfolded, as once the lineup was confirmed, this ticket would be an investment in case I wasn’t interested in attending it, or would be a bargain if bands suited me fine.

This festival has always been regarded as a hipster one, despised by the rock/metal communities for long time. The fact is that it is the only festival in Spain capable of covering all the styles, including classic rock bands and more metal sounds too. I’ve seen Neil Young, The Jayhawks, Neurosis, Neko Case, The Afghan Whigs or Hot Snakes. I think it’s time we leave all these prejudices behind, as this is a very respectable and well established festival, objectively speaking, the best in the country.

ps2014

Last Tuesday a short film was publicly streamed to introduce the lineup confirmed for 2014. Regardless of the quality or the script, I have to admit this formula was really exciting, as people were sharing impressions and confirmations through the social networks, and thanks to some of the bands confirmed there was some sort of hysteria and euphoria at some point: Nine Inch Nails, Queens Of The Stone Age, Slint, Touché Amoré, Drive-By Truckers, Kvelertak, Midlake… Just with these bands I’m interested in, the ticket’s been already paid off.

There’re still almost 4 months ahead to discover new interesting bands which will be attending the festival, and this is a good motivation for continuing investigating new stuff.

Holidays have already been confirmed for these days, probably in a couple of months I will know who will stay at the Hellhouse (my flat usually turns into a crazy community those days), and I’m looking forward meeting friends I don’t see very often. 

I think I confessed last year that even though I’m not a proper festival fan, lately I’m enjoying them lots, thanks to the vibe, my friends, the performances and the party. THE PARTY. HAPPINESS. 

Guess this week I will call Andrea to start looking for our complements. we gotta find something to beat the palms and flamingos shades.

ROCKIN’ AMONG HIPSTERS

I touched bottom last week. I was really frustrated and decided to express it here looking for some kind of relief. And it worked. A bit.

Life is a landslide of emotions, one day you’re deep in shit, the day after you feel on top of the world. More or less this is what happened to me last week. The main reason for that had to do with a pop oriented festival held in Barcelona named Primavera Sound.

Primavera Sound

A pop festival? Well, I’d say it’s THE pop festival, a huge one, and probably the most important and established in Spain.

Few months ago I purchased the ticket for just one day, Thursday, because my favorite ginger girl, Neko Case, was confirmed. Ticket was quite expensive, but since this festival is huge, I knew there were more bands worth attending. Also, I had fresh in my memory last year, when I enjoyed The Afghan Whigs’ performance, and the later party night.

Unfortunately for my friend Tani, and luckily for me, she couldn’t attend the festival, and she didn’t find any buyer for her Friday ticket, thus instead of wasting it, she handed it over me in the last minute. This meant two days at the festival in a row. Very attractive, but dangerous, as it was impossible for me to ask for a day off, and I had to work on Friday positive hangover.

My NJ soul mate, Andrea, was spending an intended Wednesday night at The Hellhouse, prior to the fest, but as you can imagine, together we are unstoppable, thus the party weekend started that evening.

Tuesday and Wednesday I was moaning, stressed and tired, but once my personal cheerleader  knocked on my door, all the bullshit was left at the corner of my mind, and I started doing what I’m best at, which is having fun.

As this festival is full of hipsters, trendsetters, fashion victims and a great bunch of assholes who think they are beyond good and evil, Andrea found the most definite complement for us, THE sunglasses, also with the aim of competing against another friend who always wears terrific ones.

nj power

Thursday was the day I was most interested in: Neko Case, Dinosaur Jr, Bob Mould and Hot Snakes.  I was also feeling curious about Tame Impala, which were quite experimental and their proposal was interesting.

After having a beer at Rockzone magazine booth and greet some acquaintances. I went straight to see Neko. My ginger looked a bit disoriented, as if she wasn’t able to catch up with the atmosphere at the festival, and the weird audience, in daylight. Truth is that she looked quite abandoned, with a messy appearance. Hippier than ever  I reckon. Her hair wasn’t even dyed and you could see her grey hair, completely untamed. She was wearing a hoodie and I don’t think she was even wearing make-up at all. The whole  scene was too weird but still her performance was a gift and a huge pleasure for my ears, as her voice sounded perfect, solid and beautiful. At the end of the day this is what I wanted: 50 wonderful minutes of Neko.

neko case primavera sound

Neko was confused, the band took their time to tune instruments after every song, so the rhythm was not so intense, but at least we could hear This Tornado Loves You, Hold on Hold on, I Wish I Was The Moon, People Got a Lotta Nerve  or Red Tide, and she introduced a new song from her upcoming work.

Once my main target was accomplished, the evening became a party. The peak of the night was the show offered by Hot Snakes. I danced like craze and had so much fun, I’m still proud of myself I was responsible enough as to force myself to take a cab back home, thinking Friday could be an awful day if I stayed partying.

Friday was meant to be more relaxing and less interesting. The Breeders playing their famous album Last Splash was a bit disappointing, however The Jesus & Mary Chain were a great surprise after the terrible performance I had witnessed almost 20 years ago at another festival. Blur were lots of fun, and well, remarking I was wasted, Titus Andronicus and King Tuff were the upper I needed to gather strength to close the festival at 7AM dancing electronic music as if there was no tomorrow. A threesome spontaneous party was meant to happen at The Hellhouse, but unfortunately we didn’t reach the breaking point, so as hard to believe as it might sound, two girls and one handsome guy just slept in my bed and nothing happened (:FACEPALM!).

i want beer

On Saturday the festival went on without me. When analyzing the whole experience, it was so great, thinking of fun, great people, excellent shows and unforgettable stamps in my mind, I’m positive I’ll attend the whole festival, book some days off during and after the event, and enjoy one of the most powerful musical options in town every year.

As for the people I met there, I just can say you’re AWESOME!

THE NIGHT I GOT EVEN WITH THE AFGHAN WHIGS

What crazy times I’ve been living the past weeks, I’m still knackered after so many events, live shows, beers and silly nights. Not gonna complain at all, it’s been a blast and I feel grateful to all the partners who have been sharing those moments with me.

It’s Monday, well, past midnight, thus it’s actually Tuesday. Let’s say I’ve been chilling out for a couple of days and my mind is starting so settling down, although it’ll be on the move in a couple of days again. But that’s not relevant now, finally I feel focused enough as to talk about THE show I witnessed last Thursday at Primavera Sound Festival 2012. No, I’m not talking about Wilco, or Refused, not even Mudhoney nor Spiritualized, at last I made it up with The Afghan Whigs, or perhaps I should say their performance was the way I expected it should be back in July 99.

How many times have I refer to this band in this blog in the past months? Not enough considering my state of excitement waiting for this show. Since they were confirmed I knew I was gonna make it to the festival, and as soon as the exact date was confirmed I purchased my ticket.

I already explained here about my disappointment when I saw them in London 13 years ago. I had heard so many wonders related to this band and the lead singer, Greg Dulli,  I felt really frustrated when my expectations weren’t fulfilled. No emotion, no excitement, completely out of place, I couldn’t understand why everybody were praising the Whigs so much, and I wasn’t touched nor impressed, especially in a time when there were many things I was discovering and flipping with.

You know, I quickly forgot about them till someone started to play me the albums again 6 years later, reminding me of the show again, and making me wonder what had happened. Once their visit was confirmed I could only think of relieving of such bitter taste in my mouth.

 After the recent disappointments suffered with the performances of Manic Street Preachers, and Soundgarden, less than a week before, my anxiety and nervousness had increased alarmly. On one hand I was trying to chill out and low my expectations, on the other hand for me was like the last chance of a band I loved to redeem and help me believing in reunions and classic bands.

I was at the festival early in the afternoon so I could meet some people, have some beers, attend a couple of shows, and hurry up to the main stage.

20:40 still daylight, Greg Dulli and the rest of the band come out to the stage, including a huge velvet backdrop. Crime Scene Part One starts, and a couple of tears are rolling by my cheeks immediately. I’m starting moving towards the stage with I’m Her Slave, surprisingly managing to sneak to first rows quite centered very easy, completely on my own. Who cares? I only want to see, feel, sing…

The band sounded pretty solid, Dulli’s voice brilliant, and the elegance The Afghan Whigs spread, noticeable.

I was glad to see most people among the crowd were fans for real, at least everybody  around was singing and getting as excited as I was with every song.

Pity the show only lasted one hour sharp, the set list included songs from Congregation, Black Love, Gentlemen, and 1995, having a place for the new released single See and Don’t See. Whenever a  band responsible for so many awesome tunes elaborates a set list, trying to make the difference from the other tour shows, and intending to surprise the audience and create a special atmosphere, with not much time for the set, the fans will always feel a bit disappointed for not including THOSE hits we consider essential. Thus, I missed Debonair, John The Baptist or Somethin’ Hot, but the show was so powerful, the band was so incredible, and the atmosphere created with the combination of lights and the sunset by the beach, my happiness came from what I had just heard, rather than allowing frustration to ruin the moment.

I finished the show with my friends Toni and Felix, and some other acquaintances, and seeing everybody dancing and jumping in happy and shiny faces with Miles Iz Ded or Into The Floor, and once the show was done everybody hugging each other and shaking hands in approval was a picture I will never forget, because nowadays, this seldom happens, and it’s great enthusiasm was the king of the evening.

Here is the complete performance, hope you like it

After such intensity and emotions to the max, the sense of relief invaded me, and it was time to enjoy the rest of the night more in a party mood. Met some friends, hung around and went to see Mudhoney. I’m not a huge fan, just got one album, but the great company I was in, requested it, so there we were. What am I telling you this? Mmmmm, well, look what happened when I went to the bar to get some beers…

Hell yeah! All of a sudden I find Mr. Dulli on my way and just can’t help but lying on my knees. I was so excited it was hard to focus on what to say, but he was a gentleman, and kindly attended me for 5 minutes. I could tell him, among many other things that I had finally quivered with The Afghan Whigs, and when I explained my previous experience in 1999, not only he agreed but also replied telling me “We’re much better now”. I will never forget his eyes staring at mine, Dulli is not gorgeous, but he’s been said to be a seducer, a super taker. I could never comprehend why until I saw his irresistible glance. And yes, he was so nice! Grabbed my hand, asked my name, and he ok’d the picture…Perfect end for a perfect time. What a blast, holy shit!

Want to see some more of the pictures I took during the show ? Visit my Flickr account

ALBUM OF WEEK 10 – LADY’S BRIDGE

World is falling apart, full of vulgarity, mean attitude, shameful events, and tension and anger in the air. Time Out! We need some high class and elegance in our lives otherwise we’re gonna turn crazy sooner than supposed. Chill out, prepare and serve yourself  a cocktail, better if in good companion, and feel the glamour through your veins.

Having such thought immediately brings the series Mad Men back to my memory. Those memories of the good ol’ times we, for obvious reasons, didn’t live. It’s funny because I’d be so outta line if living in that era…

All this aesthetics and love for glamour and high class, need to be accompanied by a good soundtrack. We need crooners. From time to time we need elegant stuff, orchestrations, love songs in the shape of ballads and this take-it-easy philosophy so typical in the 50-60’s, and not only classic interpreters, but also new proposals, are welcome.

And here is where Richard Hawley starts the game.  You can’t be sure of anything in this life. This guy was member of Pulp, a band which used to get on my nerves for long time. Perhaps now that I’m more open minded, I could listen to that Brit Pop stuff, but for the moment I’m more interested in Hawley’s solo career.

You know for 5 years or even more, I had access to a huge collection of CDs. Once I started my own way, my CD collection was considerably reduced, although it’s not to be undermined nor despised at all. Well, minimum two years had passed since I listened to this wonderful Lady’s Bridge album for the last time. I had thought to purchase it back in the day, but the list of MUST HAVE’s was hugely increased, and I completely forgot about Richard Hawley, until 10 days ago, that I took day off, and went to this mega store, FNAC, and saw the CD waiting for me, and I didn’t have any doubts, this time it had to be mine.

Lady’s Bridge consists of 11 tracks talking about past love and broken hearts (what’s the point of being a crooner if you don’t sing about love?), with amazing orchestral arrangements, beautiful lyrics, and Hawley’s old school brilliant voice, a bit dark yet very charming. This combination is simply delicious. Valentine, Serious, Tonight the Streets Are Us, Lady Solitude… the first half of this album is just pure magic.

Many coincidences are happening lately related to music, or my recent choices and experiences. This time, I bought the CD, got enthusiastic, and someone told me Hawley is performing  in Barcelona apparently for free, as part of the open air shows organized by Primavera Sound Festival 2012. Those who live in Barcelona, don’t be silly, don’t miss the chance to dance close to someone with Hawley on stage.