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Primavera Sound has a long story of success, and it has brought exquisite music to Barcelona for over a decade. This year, for the first time, the festival also took place in Porto – Optimus Primavera Sound.  The Portuguese city is the perfect counterpart to the Catalonian one in terms of charm, cultural heritage, climate and cosmopolitism; and their version of the festival is as good as the original, as Noel Hernandez discovered during his weekend in Porto. Here is part one of his review of the festival:
 
Thursday 07/06/2012
 
Whoever wonders what the point of Suede's comeback is, the is that there isn't any. Still, Bernard Butler and company managed to pull a decent show together on the first night of the Primavera Sound in Porto.
 
To my horror, The Beautiful Ones sounded like a hooligan anthem sung by a Suede tribute band, but with the encore they redeemed themselves with an emotive Saturday Night: Butler wandering about the first row of the audience playing his role of tormented soul is the kind of theatrical touch for which we liked Suede in the first place.
 
The other veterans of the night were Mercury Rev, and theirs was a relentless and sparkling set of dreamy psychedelia that touched heaven with three aces in a row: Tides Of The Moon, Holes and, of course, Goddess On A Hiway.
 
FESTIVAL REVIEW - OPTIMUS PRIMAVERA SOUND 'PART ONE'
Remarkable is the insatiable fervour of Jonathan Donahue. With his looks a la Polanski circa 1974, he knew how to lead his band in every moment to deliver a total hypnotic experience. Still relevant, still good - even though the core of their setlist is two decades old.
 
Too bad for those who missed Bjork – who, with Explosions in the Sky, cancelled at the Primavera. I doubt that with the Icelandic diva onstage, things would have ran so smoothly in terms of audience management and organisation at the Portuguese festival. 
 
The feeling was one of being at an ideal event: short queues, easy access to the front rows and a fluid transit between stages and facilities at the impressive Parque da Ciudade – a lush suburban park nestled between the Atlantic Ocean and the city.
 
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Review - Noel Hernandez
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