Now that I’ve had some time to reflect on my days in Barcelona for Primavera Sound 2011, I’m going to do my absolute best to sum up the experience with awards to the bands that either rocked my world or made me want to cry (from either excitement or disappointment).
For a gallery of pretty people enjoying Primavera Sound, click here.
El Guincho put on one of the best sets at Primavera. The entire audience was going buck wild BEFORE the all-girl pillow fight broke out on stage. Then the feathers began to fly and, miraculously, two of the gorgeous ladies began making out. This wasn’t just making out, but a 5 minute raping of each others mouths. After they parted ways, each girl proceeded to do their magic on Díaz-Reixa’s keyboard. Dream come true.
I had heard Animal Collective didn’t put on the best show. I also heard that their show is one of the best things you could ever experience. Despite such mixed reviews, I decided to go in running, borrowing my friends face paint, applying stripes on my face, then turning around and getting the 15 people behind me in on the action (hard to see in the picture, but it’s there!). After our entire section of the crowd had their paint on, the band got on stage and began their disappointing set.
I am not a die-hard fan, but I was definitely hoping to be convinced by their show. Didn’t happen. I guess I should have known what was coming when I was told that their set was “more about them than the crowd.”
I’m sorry to do this. I really am! I just thought my first Flaming Lips experience would be as magical as my friends have described. Their Primavera set was plain boring though! It played out more like an acoustic, toned down version of the Wayne Coyne I’ve heard so much about. Very sad.
This one goes out to you, Patrick and Alaina (of Tennis). You two are the absolute best, not only for getting me my wristband, but for being just as excited as I was about every little thing at Primavera. And, obviously, for killing it on the ATP stage. I am biased, but their set was, in my opinion, one of the tightest, dead on of the entire festival. The best I’ve ever seen from them.
Add to it our strolls around the fest grounds, chance run-in with The Fiery Furnaces’ Eleanor Friedberger (Alaina was gushing with excitement), standing in the back at the tUnE-YarDs and being awesome about all the people asking to take picture with you, watching Fleet Foxes from the VIP (NBD), and so much more.
Here’s to your biggest show to date and your continued success/awesome-ness.
This one goes out to you, dude passed out right outside the festival with your ‘dick and balls’ belt buckle. Your dick and balls have been giving me unnecessary nightmares ever since 5AM on the first morning of the festival when this took place. Way to tuck up.
(NO IMAGE PROVIDED FOR YOUR PROTECTION)
El Guincho, I didn’t understand a single word you said. Didn’t matter. Your calypso shit got me all sorts of crazy. The girls didn’t hurt either.
This one’s tough. Really fucking tough. After lots of thought though, I have to say that both Belle & Sebastian and Girl Talk take the cake. I’ve been a Girl Talk hater for a few years now and feel like a fool. His set was all about the audience, a rolling mixture of rap, rock, and sweat that left me and everyone around me wild until 5AM.
And then there’s Belle & Sebastian! I had seen them last year at the Williamsburg Waterfront and was super disappointed. Rest assured, their Primavera set was stunning. A perfect mix of their pop songs and lesser known tracks that put a trance over the crowd. ”If You Find Yourself Caught In Love” was perfect and more. Thank you so much!
Unfortunately, this award goes out to far too many bands. Those I’ve never seen: Yuck, James Blake, The Fresh & Onlys, M. Ward, Field Music. And those I was dying to see again: The National and Sufjan Stevens. Dammit!
This one is for Finland’s Rubik. I have been obsessed with their new record and missed their first set on the Jägermeister Stage. Not to worry, though, as they also played an additional stripped down set. Sitting in the third row in a tent filled with 30 people or so, I was blessed with both “Goji Berries” and “World Around You”. I really wish I had a good picture of my face during this set. I can only equate my feelings during that performance to what I felt the first time I ate ice cream out of a batter’s helmet cup at a Mets game.
And the final award of the evening (or day). Fleet Foxes, your set, everything about it, was perfect.
How is this different than the ‘best set’ award? Fleet Foxes performance was more than a set, it was an experience. From the sprawling crowd and dropped jaws to the impeccable sound and setlist, there wasn’t a single thing about it I would change. Even though I was far in the back, their songs traveled perfectly, reaching me as if I were standing 20 feet away.
What I’m most appreciative for is that after seeing them own the stage, I was compelled to dive more deeply into their new album, Helplessness Blues. It’s glorious in every way and was recreated at Primavera in a way their fans could only have hoped for.
via Flickr, courtesy of Toni Rosado