Radiohead at Primavera are criminally quiet

Primavera Sound 2016 review

published: Fri 10th Jun 2016

around the festival site

Thursday 2nd to Saturday 4th June 2016
Parc del Forum, Barcelona, Spain, Spain
175 euros plus booking fee
daily capacity: 35000
last updated: Thu 12th May 2016

Beirut has continued to make the step up with each album. What began as a cult act he and his merry band seem to belong on one of the biggest stages at the festival. With his most pop-centric track 'No No No' being received so well that their place in indie pop stardom is complete.

Radiohead are up next and it's fair to say this is the one most people are looking forward to all weekend. The crowd is absolutely massive. And again, this is where the festival could become problematic for some. Getting to the front is a near impossible task, while the more fair weather music fans that the festival now attracts means you might not be getting the festival experience you wanted. Even Geoff Barrow of Portishead, and the aforementioned Beak, tweeted about the new decibel levels at Primavera which are criminally quiet. Radiohead seemed good though, as far as 'ah that sounds nice from a distance' over the chattering of crowds and the general hustle bustle of the bars. Not much you can do if it's an enforced thing though, I should have known to go to  Dinosaur Jr really. More fool me!

As we walk back from Radiohead we stumble across Animal Collective who've such a huge crowd that you can't get near the amphitheatre, there seems to be a nice kaleidoscopic thing going on, but I decide its better off to check out Holly Herndon

She's at the Pitchfork stage and even still I'm not sure if I enjoyed it or not. On record it's an expert voyage of experimental electronica music. It benefits from the record narrative, but live it's something altogether different. It's disjointed, it's more abrasive, and it's out of place and at times utterly testing.

The Avalanches first gig in 15 years takes place at the amphitheatre and I'm not sure anyone knows what to expect. Is it a full band? No. Is it live at all? Not really. Are they doing Avalanches material? Not much. Oh. But fret not; what it turns out to be is one of the most joyous DJ sets you're ever likely to hear. Bowie, Prince, Stevie Wonder and many more delights are spliced into a DJ set that seems resigned to a long gone era of the mash up, but somehow it's more relevant (and danceable than ever) in 2016. It's good to have them back in whatever shape they come in!


review by: Paul Mullin

photos by: Paul Mullin

Thursday 2nd to Saturday 4th June 2016
Parc del Forum, Barcelona, Spain, Spain
175 euros plus booking fee
daily capacity: 35000
last updated: Thu 12th May 2016


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