Primavera Sound: Television, Spoon, Connan Mockasin, NIN, Kendrick Lamar

Written by

Coutney Barnett

Boogarins Photo by Jenn Semler
Photo by Jenn Semler

(See photos of Day 1 and Day 2)

I know this might sound crazy to some people, but I was very conflicted having to choose between Boogarins, a new band from Brazil that I love and have been itching to see live, and watching Television perform their masterpiece”Marquee Moon“.

I was a tiny bit hesitant, fearful because I cherish those songs so much.

But it was everything I could have hoped for and sprinting across the festival grounds after a few songs by Boogarins was clearly a good choice.

I mean, the title track itself has so many incredible moments and I was so happy to hear it live in all it’s glory that it almost brought me to tears. (Seriously, take 10 minutes and go listen to it right now).

Spoon Photo by Jenn Semler
Photo by Jenn Semler
Spoon Photo by Jenn Semler
Photo by Jenn Semler

The seminal NYC band has had a big influence on many, including Britt Daniel. He asked the crowd gathered to see Spoon (just their 6th show since recently reuniting) if they saw the performance and said their music was “kinda why we got into this in the first place.”

Spoon was in top form and did a career-spanning set at sunset that made us all giddy with joy and extra excited about the new album they have on the way.

It’s worth noting that every band that I’ve seen take the stage at Primavera Sound in Barcelona has complimented the crowd, the festival, or the other bands on the bill. It’s been a giant love fest.

Coutney Barnett
Photo by Jenn Semler

Aussie Courtney Barnett owned the Pitchfork stage, while Basque band Belako brought some punk rock electricity to the Vice stage right next door. With two incredibly attractive women at the forefront, they were a burst of energy in the afternoon.

With the evening came the oddball psychedelic pop of New Zealander Connan Mockasin.

Fans of Ariel Pink will definitely dig this. His music feels like a nighttime swim under twinkling stars on a warm evening. A romantic caress delivered by a man who wore a white wig and then removed it to reveal his own white hair.

DJ Mario Cotto introduced me to him when his “Caramel” record came out, but his live show is on the next level and I highly suggest you make it to his set at FYF Fest later this year.

It was easily my favorite set of the weekend thank to an epic version of “I’m the Man, That Will Find You“. (I have to also mention this — that song is used to great effect in the Vimeo series “High Maintenance” in a episode that happens to be entitled “Rachel”: The whole series is great but that song MAKES that episode.)

Kendrick Lamar Photo by Jenn Semler
Kendrick Lamar
Photo by Jenn Semler

Kendrick Lamar proudly brought the West Coast to Barcelona with one of the only (if not THE only) hip hop set of the weekend. He was his own MC, getting the crowd riled up, thousands of arms waving in the air, with a fantastic backing band behind him. He’s immensely talented and was a perfect fit.

Nine In Nails Photo by Jenn Semler
Nine In Nails
Photo by Jenn Semler

Last but not least, with his trademark intensity, billows of smoke, strobe lights and very heavy bass, Nine Inch Nails took the stage and Trent Reznor reminded everyone why he’s one of the great frontmen in rock. Not much more needs to be said about NIN.

It was time we called it a night and brought Primavera Sound to a close. Hope I get to go back!


Jenn Semler at Primavera Sound Photo by Rachel Reynolds
Jenn Semler at Primavera Sound
Photo by Rachel Reynolds