Festival Review: NOS Primavera Sound



This was, by far, the best edition of Porto’s NOS Primavera Sound. In this small country where Summer Festivals grow like mushrooms, we must say without any kind of doubts that this is the best and unique Summer festival in Portugal.

Basically, this year’s edition began with the one and only Patti Smith. For those who were there, words can’t explain the whole feeling of watching this strength of nature performing live. But well, I’m going to try to explain that for those who might have missed the shows. Patti Smith and her band hit the Pitchfork stage for an acoustic/spoken show and there were a lot of chairs for people to sit and watch it. But, those chairs were not needed (maybe for the ones that were already tired) and the show was more than an acoustic/spoken, where Patti sang some of her classics making people sing and cry along with her. This show felt so good…

After that, we ran to see Fka twigs, the British performer just performed a dull, monotone and simplistic show. Time for Interpol, they engaged the auto-pilot and another show is done and out of their agenda. Not that their concert was bad, but it’s Interpol, we can’t expect too much of them. They were good enough to please the fans, they played their hits and their mission was accomplished.

FKA twigs
Patti Smith

Unfortunately Viet Cong was at the same hour of Patti Smith, sorry guys but it’s Patti Smith. So our day number 2 was probably one of the best from the entire festival. With a massive audience waiting for her and with a breezy wind sun over us, watching Patti Smith and her band playing Horses was just surreal. Her presence on stage was so strong and captivating, and she shouted, she danced, she did almost everything with an endless energy. Songs like “Banga”, “Because The Night” and “People Have The Power” made everyone sing-along out loud and that was pretty amazing. It was quite hard not to shed a tear while witnessing this show… Yeah, it was really great!

Next were The Replacements energetic performance, their last show ever brought a bit of nostalgia to our shores, they will be missed. Belle And Sebastian afterwards were catchy and sweet, they can’t surprise us anymore, a good concert although. Pallbearer were heavy and strong, this was the right amount of heaviness this day needed. Then it was time for the hip hop duo Run the Jewels that are conquering the world, so it was no surprise to witness all the madness that happened during their set. Killer Mike and El-P just tear the place apart, song after song – either from RTJ or RTJ 2. It’s no wonder, after watching the show, why people love them so much. Hip hop quality!

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Run The Jewels
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Patti Smith
The Replacements
Belle And Sebastian

Final day, and we had an amazing blast with Sonic Youth, oops… The Thurstoon Moore Band, Moore and company sounded like a b-side of Sonic Youth and sounded so damn good. After that, one of the most awaited bands of this last day were the return of Babes in Toyland. Even if the audience wasn’t that much, the people that were there knew the songs by heart and sang along with vocalist/guitarist Kat Bjelland, which is in a good shape to scream from the top of her lungs. In spite of they’re being older, that didn’t take away their energy and enthusiasm to play the songs that marked one generation and themselves.

Next, Einstürzende Neubauten… there are no words that can describe such tremendous and cathartic performance. Slap in the face? Check! They still rule? Check! After that, we went to see Ex-Hex rocking the Pitchfork Stage, where an hour later in the same stage Steve Albini’s Shellac performed. Might be by now a constant in every edition of the festival, but honestly is the kind of band that you don’t mind seeing every year solely based on the fact that their shows are super energetic, raw as fuck, and a rock and roll lesson all-around. This year was no different. The festival ended with the performance of Pharmakon. Margaret Chardiet scary and disturbing performance, the perfect ending for this unique and over the top festival.

Words: Fausto Casais, Andreia Alves and Tiago Moreira // Pictures: NOS Primavera Sound – Hugo Lima and Hugo Sousa
Dan Deacon
Einsturzenden Neubaten
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Ex Hex
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PHARMAKON_NOS_Primavera Sound_2015-1
Babes In Toyland
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The Thurston Moore Band
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