When you reach a certain age, the beginning of the festival season arrives together with the question, ‘Am I too old for this?’. That’s the question being asked by Christian Guzy in this nostalgic photographic tribute to Primavera Sound and Melt Festival.
This year was my 7th at Primavera Barcelona – arguably one of the best festivals in the world – and my 6th at Melt Festival. The first time I experienced Primavera was right after my civil service, and the result of a rather spontaneous decision. I was sitting outside the Donaufestival – another great event – with good friends from Numavi Records and Killed By 9V Batteries, when they told me about this festival in Barcelona. After listening to the group dropping one superlative after another, I decided to join them a couple of weeks later. I’ve never regretted that decision, and have returned to Primavera annually ever since.
Primavera Sound is located in a former Olympic park, and therefore is able to boast all the conveniences of an urban festival. Nevertheless, the festival became a rather extreme experience this year, thanks to the near-constant 39 degree temperature. I was seriously fighting hard not to drop on the floor for the first couple of days. Still, the festival as a whole did not disappoint. While watching Brian Wilson play one of my all-time-favourites, Pet Sounds, 50 years after it was released, I had to fight away tears – as did Brian. I also managed to watch the reunion of my teenage heroes LCD Soundsystem, alongside seeing other artists like Vince Staples, SOPHIE, Evian Christ, Deerhunter, Nao, Boredoms… you get the point.
As July rolled around, I decided I felt too old for camping at Melt. I was also far too late to find a hotel room anywhere near the festival site, so I ended up going there for a night, with the plan of taking a train back to Berlin sometime during the next day. What at first sounded like a solid idea quickly became more of a struggle, when it started pissing down with rain in the morning. Four hours later, I was pretty happy to be sitting in the train back to Berlin. But returning to the question at the beginning of this text and asking, ‘Am I too old for this?’. Maybe. But I’ll probably end up in exactly the same spots next year anyway.
Text and photos by Christian Guzy