The first day there were 66,000 people, 74,000 the second and everything seemed to indicate that this Saturday night this number would be exceeded. The Primavera Sound sails at cruising speed and under a sun that has not missed the party, and it started precisely in the place where it is least hot. In the Auditori, a jewel in the crown that guarantees comfortable concerts, excellent sound and cooling, but that punishes with queues and the possibility of staying out once the 3,000 seats on offer are sold out. Norway’s Jenny Hval deserved any queue. For his part, after his concert the day before inside the Auditori, Low discharged their intensity outdoors in a concert that both wounded and cauterized, and which had a similar repertoire. The night awaited Nick Cave as the festival’s inveterate Pied Piper of Hamelin, responsible, along with Gorillaz and Idles, for the hypothetical growth in attendance that was predicted for a Saturday that could reach dizzying numbers of attendance.
Speaking of assistance, on Friday night the queues moved from inside the enclosure to the subway, where most of the foreigners did not have a ticket. Getting it from a mouth with two vending machines (and one of them out of order) was rather slow. Those who were far-sighted did not have to queue, and in defense of the metro it must be said that, machines out of service on the sidelines, it is difficult to absorb a crowd that decides to go out in a similar time slot. And that one mouth was destined for access and another for exit, to avoid collapses and insecurity. This will be another of the issues in this love-hate relationship between the City Council and the festival, which have been exchanging statements for weeks, one in the role of parent and the festival as a creature that wants all the toys in the shop window.
Returning to the afternoon, at the Auditori, it was shown how music with experimental overtones does not force you to put your thumb and forefinger cradling your chin to help the brain capture some meaning of what is heard and thus not appear dull. Jenny Hval, sharp voice, light demeanor, is a multidisciplinary artist, experienced in the experimental world, who has recently approached pop in her own way. The songs that she offered live, delicately instrumented, with nuanced percussion and a strange beauty not elusive in her melodic development, were nothing short of fascinating. Songs like Jupiter, The Revolution Will Not Be Owned either Classic Objects, the title of the album that fed the repertoire, talked about how music can be sinuous and beautiful, intentional, but not elusive. How to talk, as the album talks, about the body and the self without abandoning the emotional factor and without becoming an introspective sucker. Sensitivity, intelligence and subtlety without showing off. Captivating.
Meanwhile, the festival was stretching. The most forward-thinking were already having pizza for dinner, and the golf carts that transport workers passed by from time to time. There were VIP guests whose faces denoted that they felt anointed by the distinction, like someone who marches in those harnessed cars at the April Fair. There have always been classes. And nonsense. Of course, to truly attract attention at the festival, there is nothing better than attending with the equipment of a real estate agent, them, or management secretary, if possible with high boots, them. The rest is seen, because everything is seen. There are also things that attract attention, like that booth where mobile phones are charged while pedaling a bicycle. Apparently it works at a rate of 40 seconds of pedaling per percentage point of load, although separate calculations it is easy to evoke Pedro Flintstone and his trunkmobile. Everything is for ecology.
All the culture that goes with you awaits you here.
While the bikes waited for customers and some spectators served themselves beer from taps that needed an application that controlled the payment, Low began his concert with that strange mix between smoothness and electricity, roughness and sweetness. The trio led by Mimi Parker and Alan Sparhawk plays in the league of couplings, of wild disruptions in songs that seemed peaceful and that showed that in this North American band there are no conclusions until the end of their pieces. Although the songs lower their intensity, their sharp and angular sound and their intention to maintain tension have made them, for many years now, a benchmark of alternative rock.
As are Einstürzende Neubauten of industrial music, with which they filled one of the main stages with sound screws. Factory music in the open air, metallic factory sounds languishing, one more attraction of this huge market that is the festival. Because this is not a mall. This is more of a food market, but instead of shouting hake, there are stages bellowing to attract spectators.
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