You have to make choices when you attend a festival and Primavera Sound Festival is no exception. It's an adventure and you better be prepared: 200 bands, 5 days and even after 4 years of beating the ground at Barcelona's finest festival, I still get lost...here's what Third Outing’s French reporter François Cattelin thought of this year’s Primavera.
As always, this year was full of promises and surprises. But first, I was amazed by the crowds. I'm used to the young hipster crowd in France but the people I met in Barcelona were far different. There were old bald men everywhere – even around 2am on a Saturday night slamming in front of Thee Oh Sees. Let's face it, I was impressed. About the gig, frontman John Dyer is still the coolest guy in the business. Watching him shouting his pop-punk songs (chorus, anyone?) is a great experience.
Let me tell you now. I hated The Strokes. And I believe everyone who cares about music also did. You can bring guitars but if you don't have the guts, the beans, then what's the point? OK if they don't care, but does it have to be that painfully obvious? Albert Hammond JNR made eye contact with me and they were full of sorrow. It's a shame to see The Strokes acting like spoiled rock stars. An hour of effort please or you may as well split up like Oasis.
But let's forget about The Strokes and move on. The Soft Moon are the descendants of Joy Division minus the suicidal tendencies. You can feel painfulness in their attitude when they perform but it's actually quite enjoyable (weird, right?). Military sounds came from nowhere throughout the set and the vagueness between the songs was probably intended, I think – maybe. I had the same feelings in front of Earth about 3 hours before which was another powerful moment of music too.
Speaking of being bored, the prize for Worst Show at Primavera 2015 goes to...wait for it…Vietcong! The Canadian sensation were boring as hell, sounding like any garage band in the world. I guess some bands are made for small venues, like Twerps, for example, another indie-pop sensation from Australia who did well on a smaller stage. They reminded me of Veronica Falls who played the festival in 2012. They played as if they were in your garden, telling jokes and making fun of themselves. It was a cool atmosphere and perfectly epitomised what a festival should be.
I told you the festival was full of surprises, well here's an extra special one: did you know The Pastels were playing? The band paved the way for another great Scottish Pop outfit Belle and Sebastian. It was Friday and I was in love. Get it? When Katrina started to sing Come To The Dance every man in the audience sighed after her. Even better, Stephen Pastel still has the same voice years after Illumination, their greatest album, which made this a truly unforgettable music experience.
After showing off my best dance moves, I was ready for some action and some rock & roll! Sleater-Kinney appeared at the perfect moment for me, I’d found my festival groove and they were just awesome. It seems like they have played together forever (almost 20 years) but it’s still as sharp as it used to be. The new songs are good but the Sub Pop era is still much better; it’s a good point to make for the drummer rolled her eyes like no one else stage. In terms of drummers alone, it had to be one of the best Primaveras. Health who played Saturday night had one of the loudest ones I have ever seen. The band was so impulsive, and I’m even a fan of hardcore.
I leave you with this: You should never forget that «you know when you arrive at the Parc del Fòrum but you don't know when you will come back home». Think about it.