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Summercase 2007

by Leonora Oppenheim in Culture on 17 July 2007

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Sunshine, blue skies, sand, sea and waves—sound waves that is— are all elements of summers in Barcelona, the epicenter of summer music festivals. This past weekend the city danced to the happy sounds of Summercase. Now in its second year, the newer, lighter and fluffier festival on the block displayed its youthfulness with a decidedly upbeat line-up, in contrast with the darker edgier sounds of Sonar and the distinctly indie Primavera Sound. An amazing feat of organization, Summercase puts on a two-night bill of artists playing in Barcelona and Madrid simultaneously—the artists playing Madrid on Friday night all travel to play Barcelona on Saturday and vice versa.

Several behemoths of the festival circuit—such as Air, The Flaming Lips, Chemical Brothers and DJ Shadow—headlined both nights this year. But, as impressive as these old boys are, it was actually the young girls who stole the show. Lily Allen was in fine and feisty form telling it exactly like it is and The Gossip, who most likely had never been seen before by this crowd, were a vision of raw female power. Beth Ditto, the lead singer, shot her extraordinary energy through the audience like a shockwave (above right).

London-based, Canadian group Dragonette (above left) was a special highlight and the perfect embodiment of what Summercase is all about. The lead singer, Martina, who you might have heard guesting on the Basement Jaxx single, "Take Me Back to Your House," was faced only with a few stragglers when she came on stage, but by the end of their electrifying set she had a full tent rocking to their self-described dirty, hook-heavy, electropop monsters." Young, bold, bright, sharp and sexy, Dragonette are ones to watch in the future. Their single "Take it Like a Man" drops next Monday, 23 July and their debut album is imminent. Watch Martina work it in the video for "Take it Like a Man" here.

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