That feeling in your heart when everything connects: the music, the lights, the crowd. These are the moments that keep thousands of people coming back to Sonar year on year. 126, 000 people descended on the streets of Barcelona for Sonar 2018, the highest attendance in its history.
A festival so effortlessly cool it stands close to the forefront of the world’s most pivotal musical experiences. In it’s 25th year and housed proudly amongst Barcelona’s artsy streets, Sonar’s venues blend slick modern architecture with historical grandeur.
Combining simplistic festival ideals with impeccable musical programming, Sonar delivers an understated yet world-class platform. Away from the rave Sónar+D gives voice to creators, artists, entrepreneurs, investors, scientists, code designers and other multiple innovators in order to share and decipher the challenges and major issues faced in cultural, social and economic news:artificial intelligence, virtual and augmented reality, the blockchain, the new Internet and big data.
Sonar by Day placed perfectly in the heart of the city showcases a chilled out display of electronic music’s elite. Headlined by George Fitzgerald (live), Little Simz, Laurent Garnier, Black Coffee, Maribou State and IAMDDB amongst many others, Barcelona’s blazon sun touches every reason why the festival has created it’s own pedestal.
Sonar by Night brought the balancing Yang to the Yin of the daytime’s festival, with dark expansive spaces within the Fira Gran Via exhibition hall on the outskirts of the city. Presenting Bonobo, Gorillaz, Thom Yorke and LCD Soundsystem as just some of the headlining acts; its line up was almost as impressive as the venue itself.
Heart rumbling bass dominated Friday night rattling all the right notes. Diplo set alight SonarClub with the energetic crowd feeling every beat as tracks as large as Yellowclaw’s ‘Beastmode’ found their place in Barcelona. Twinned with an adorning atmosphere and incredible sound system, A-Trak’s ‘Heads Will Roll’ remix was the only fitting anthem to play out the end of the bass heavy party.
Stand out moments on the Saturday saw Thom Yorke play an incredible set at SonarClub. Over the years it has become apparent that Yorke’s talent and his boundless artistic creativity goes far beyond Radiohead. Sónar gave Yorke the platform to further demonstrate why he is one of the most relevant artists of our time, performing in a live mix with Nigel Godrich and Tarik Barri.
If you love the mud and chaos of being amongst nature’s elements then this may not be the festival for you. If you’ve been there, experienced it, and want just the music – Sonar is the answer.
For one year only, Sónar 2019 will take place one month later, on July 18, 19 and 20. The following year Sónar 2020 will return to its usual dates, June 18, 19 and 20.
The next Sónar events around the world are: Buenos Aires (November 16, 2018),Bogotá (November 17, 2018), Istanbul (March 8 and 9, 2019), Hong Kong (April 13, 2019) and Reykjavík (April 25, 26 and 27, 2019).