I’ve just returned from a week without internet: minus. Because I was in Barcelona: plus. For the Primavera Sound Festival: plus plus plus! Really, folks, this last week has been phenomenal. Let me set the stage…
Last week about this time I was handing in my final essay, packed back in tow, then hopped a train over to Stockholm. With nowhere to go until the 4 a.m. bus to the Skavsta airport, because, you know, everything in Sweden closes early, I’d planned on maybe hiding out at a kebab shop after the train station closed. Turns out, there were a few other travelers in my same boat: losts souls for one night. Together with a group of strangers, we managed to find a dive bar that stayed open until 3 a.m. We had a few beers, then made it back for the early bus to the airport. Then it was off to Barcelona for me.
Once in Barcelona, I kicked back with a few good books (one on Quantum Theory, the other me rereading Bachelard) until my friends’ flight arrived. They’d planned to meet me on their way from Vienna. Apparently they also had quite an adventure getting to their flight, but that is a tale for them to spin. The rest of the world was behind us, Barcelona our future for the next few days. And since we’d arrived a couple of days before the festival, we got to wander around the city and see the sights. Mainly these were the buildings of Antoni Gaudi. Seriously, that man’s architecture is mad. As in crazy, not the hip slang term for awesome. Which they also were. First, however, we had to find our apartment. This was quite the ordeal as most of our cell phones didn’t work and we had to call this guy Fernando to come let us in. And when we finally did manage it, only two of us could actually meet with him, because, well, because we’d been involved in some creative counting of our personage when booking the place on account of inflating prices. Truly we numbered five. Soon to be six. Maybe even seven by Thursday. Heh, heh… Anyway, we got in just fine then had some late night sandwiches and beers despite our inability to speak or even order in Spanish. Mostly it involved lots of hand waving and pointing. In the end, however, mission accomplished. We ate. We drank.
Now, I think I’ve been telling a bit of this tale out of order already, so I hope you don’t mind me just skipping to the festival part. It was the whole reason for the journey, after all. After grabbing my friend Marlo from the bus stop, the seven of us headed to Primavera Sound. And just to be clear, we were Marlo (from Bromley freshman year and friend since at UofI, seriously who’d’a thunk we’d meet up in Spain?), my Turkish friends from Uppsala — Atahan and Burak, plus their Turkish friends John, Chala, and Oner (correct me if you guys/girl read this — I’m a simple country farmer and don’t know to spell Turkish names good, plus Oner called me Jared all weekend, which I thought was funny, but hey this is retribution). Plus me. Now, as I sometimes do, I’m going to cut the narrative short in favor of pictures. Maybe it’s laziness, maybe I still have a paper to read and oppose for my class, maybe there are simply no words for the music. And there were three days of music. Three amazing days. And for jealousy’s sake, let me name the bands I saw (and rocked out to) in chronological order (best in bold): Thursday — Sic Alps, Surfer Blood, The XX, Titus Andronicus, Broken Social Scene, Pavement, Fuck Buttons; Friday — The New Pornographers, Best Coast, Spoon, Beach House, Panda Bear, Major Lazer, Yeasayer, Mujeres; Saturday — Atlas Sound, Florence + The Machine, The Antlers, (then wandered between Built to Spill, No Age, and The Charlatans), Pet Shop Boys, The Field, Fake Blood.
After the festival on Saturday, I went directly to the bus at 5:30ish a.m. and then caught my morning flight back to Sweden. Then, without properly sleeping, somehow bought myself sushi in Stockholm, got a train back to Uppsala, saw some dude who had also gone to Primavera, gave him a thumbs up because my brain couldn’t make conversation, then passed out.
You win, Primavera Sound. You win.
And now, as promised, pictures.
Listening to: If I Had A Heart, Fever Ray (Fuck Buttons Remix)