CONCERT REPORT: Benicassim (July 20)

Canada and Europe (May 11 - August 3, 2008). Concert reports, set lists, photos, media coverage, multimedia links, recollections...
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Diane
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CONCERT REPORT: Benicassim (July 20)

Postby Diane » Sun Jul 06, 2008 8:28 pm

Is there still a boycott of the festival amongst those who visit here, even after the resounding success of Glastonbury?
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Juan Luis Corcobado
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Re: Benicassim, July 20th

Postby Juan Luis Corcobado » Mon Jul 21, 2008 9:02 am

Two photos in Benicassim:

Leonard:

Image


Leonard and Enrique Morente:

Image
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MarianneP
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Re: Benicassim, July 20th

Postby MarianneP » Mon Jul 21, 2008 1:28 pm

Very nice photos, Leonard Cohen looks very happy and relaxed.

Marianne
Anne
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Re: Benicassim, July 20th

Postby Anne » Mon Jul 21, 2008 2:42 pm

I am THRILLED to see the picture of Leonard with Enrique Morente! How wonderful to see them meet! I know how much that must mean for Morente. His Omega album is my absolute favourite album with LC covers! How wonderful. I hope some of you who were there took the opportunity to see Enrique Morente when you were there too! He may have done some Leonard Cohen songs!!!
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Joan
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Re: Benicassim, July 20th

Postby Joan » Mon Jul 21, 2008 4:54 pm

Beautiful photo's - Thank you.
Regards, Joan.
Chema
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Re: Benicassim, July 20th

Postby Chema » Mon Jul 21, 2008 5:00 pm

More pictures:
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Chema
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Re: Benicassim, July 20th

Postby Chema » Mon Jul 21, 2008 5:31 pm

LEONARD COHEN CONVIERTE EL FESTIVAL DE BENICÀSSIM EN UN TEATRO AL AIRE LIBRE
El artista canadiense conquistó a un público entregado con su enorme talento recordando su glorioso pasado y su atractivo presente

Benicàssim (Castellón). (EFE).- Leonard Cohen ha tirado esta tarde por tierra el tradicional concepto del festival de verano para convertir el de Benicàssim en un gran teatro al aire libre, donde su enorme talento, su glorioso pasado y su aún atractivo presente ha conquistado a un público entregado con respeto a su arte tranquilo, quizá el menos acostumbrado a escucharse por estos lares.
A las ocho de la tarde y en el escenario principal del Festival Internacional de Benicàssim, el artista canadiense ha salido junto a una banda de seis músicos y tres coristas que le han acompañado a la perfección durante un recital de una hora y diez canciones, todas ellas entre las más conocidas piezas de este poeta y compositor.

Así, el vals de "Dance me to the end of love" ha marcado el inicio de un recital que a muchos se antojaba complicado para un entorno como el FIB Heineken, pese a que en las últimas ediciones se ha ido abriendo al homenaje a los "padres" y "abuelos" de la música contemporánea para que los jóvenes "fibers" puedan descubrirlos y los adultos pasen también por la taquilla de un certamen-negocio destinado fundamentalmente al ocio veraniego.

Vestido con sombrero negro, el mismo color que el chaleco y el pantalón, y con una camisa gris que se ha arremangado -inevitablemente, ante el bochorno de hoy-, Leonard Cohen ha regresado a un escenario español tras 15 años de ausencia, cuando en mayo de 1993 visitó Madrid y Barcelona para presentar "The future", cuyo tema titular también ha sonado hoy con la misma ironía con que fue escrito en su última obra maestra antes de su retiro zen, su ruina económica y su discreto regreso a la industria discográfica.

Permanentemente agradecido al público, ante quien se ha quitado el sombrero cada vez que recibía una de las constantes ovaciones que le han brindado, y a los miembros de su también elegante banda, el hoy sonriente trovador de las miserias humanas ha vuelto a prestar su voz quebrada para recitar "Bird on a wire", "Everybody knows", "Who by fire", "Suzanne" -40 años después, la ejecuta con su guitarra-, "Hallelujah", "I'm your man" y "First we take Manhattan".

Con "Hallelujah" se ha vivido posiblemente el primer gran rezo colectivo del festival en sus catorce años de historia, con brazos al cielo durante el estribillo, niños pequeños a hombros de sus emocionados padres y alguna lágrima entre varias "fibers" que descubrían hoy a este "señor tan guapo y elegante".

"I'm your man", ese larguísimo ruego para ser correspondido por la amada que 22 años después sigue sonando tan actual como entonces, ha traído paz a un festival acostumbrado al derroche sonoro y al culto al decibelio, aunque ha generado también bastantes reproches del público "mayor" hacia los jóvenes que pasaban por allí vociferando.

"Qué falta de respeto", comentaba indignado un hombre que superaba los 50 antes de pedir silencio a un grupo de ingleses, cerveza en mano y con pocas ganas de tranquilidad.

Pero Leonard Cohen, de esas cosas, no se ha enterado porque la respuesta entregada de un público que no ha llegado a llenar el recinto del Escenario Verde le ha emocionado en varias ocasiones y tras la última canción del concierto, la también histórica "So long, Marianne", se ha retirado a su camerino dando pequeños saltos mientras una larga ovación resonaba a sus espaldas.

El crepúsculo de la sierra costera de Benicàssim ha despedido al artista canadiense mientras los espectadores más veteranos, novatos en esto del FIB, comenzaban a preguntar: "Y por aquí, ¿dónde se cena?".
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Re: Benicassim, July 20th

Postby merce » Mon Jul 21, 2008 11:20 pm

I went to Benicassim Festival to see Leonard Cohen. Really the experience has been worth. During three days, I have listened very differents kinds of groups. Some I like them, other...
Anayway, who said that Leonard Cohen was not suitable for Benicassim? Really, he was. People was very entusiasthic about him and he seemed to be happy, smiling and singing fantastict.
I feel fortunate to be there. Good experience
Chema
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Re: Benicassim, July 20th

Postby Chema » Tue Jul 22, 2008 8:44 pm

The Spanish review translated:

Leonard Cohen: Hallelujah, remains our man

Leonard Cohen has pulled this afternoon by land the traditional concept of summer festival for converting from Benicassim in a large outdoor theater, where his enormous talent, his glorious past and its still attractive this has conquered an audience delivered with respect to his art calm, perhaps less accustomed to listening to these lares.

At eight p.m. and on the main stage of Benicassim International Festival, the Canadian artist has gone along with a banda six musicians and three choir member who had accompanied him to perfection during a recital one hour and ten songs, all among them the best-known pieces of this poet and composer.

Thus, the waltz from 'Dance me to the end of love' has marked the beginning of a recital that many are craving for a complicated environment as the FIB Heineken, despite the fact that in recent editions se ha ido opening tribute to the 'Parents' and' grandparents' of contemporary music for young people 'fibers' discover and adults can also pass by the ticket office of a competition-business aimed primarily at leisure summer.

Dressed in black hat, the same color as the waistcoat and trousers and a grey shirt which has arremangado-inevitably, to the embarrassment today, Leonard Cohen has returned to a Spanish stage after 15 years of absence, when in May 1993 visited Madrid and Barcelona to present 'The future', whose theme holder has also sounded today with the same irony that was written in his latest masterpiece before his retirement Zen, and your economic ruin his discreet return to industry record.

Permanently grateful to the public, to whom he had removed his hat every time he received one of the constant ovations that you have provided, and members of his banda also elegant, smiling today troubadour of human misery is back to lend his voice broken to recite 'Bird on a wire', 'Everybody knows',' Who by fire ',' Suzanne '-40 years later, running with his guitar,' Hallelujah ',' I'm your man 'and' First we Take Manhattan '. With 'Hallelujah' has been arguably the first major collective prayer of the festival in its fourteen year history, with arms to the sky during the chorus, young children to shoulder their parents excited and some tears among several 'fibers' discovered that today This' Mr so handsome and elegant.

'I'm your man', this lengthy plea to be matched by the beloved that 22 years later still sounding as current as then, it has brought peace to a festival accustomed to waste and noise decibel to the cult, although it has also generated considerable criticism Public 'major' to young people who passed through there vociferando.

'What disrespect', commented outraged a man who was over 50 before requesting silence a group of British, beer in hand and with little desire for tranquility.

But Leonard Cohen, of those things, not because it has learned the answer delivered by a public that has not come to fill the perimeter of the Green scenario has moved several times after the last song of the concert, also historic 'So long , Marianne ', has retired to his dressing room while giving small jumps a long ovation resonated to their backs.

The twilight of the coastal mountains of Benicassim has dismissed the artist while Canadian viewers more veterans, novices in this business of IFF, began to ask: 'And here, where is dinner?'.
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Re: Benicassim, July 20th

Postby Geert » Tue Jul 22, 2008 10:04 pm

Sublime! Very poetic! And so true!

And wonderful pictures too!
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Re: Benicassim, July 20th

Postby rgaynavarro » Thu Jul 24, 2008 10:35 am

I post a review I've written for a spanish newspaper . Here you can find some photos I shot during the ckecksound: http://www.flickr.com/photos/8545655@N0 ... 329372839/

"Leonard Cohen ha dejado el tabaco, las mujeres y la droga. Es vegetariano y desde su estancia en un monasterio zen en los años 90 vive en armonía consigo mismo. El canadiense imaginaba una vejez tranquila, lejos de las discográficas, de las giras, de la prensa, del público. Pero el destino es traicionero y un día Cohen descubrió que su ex manager le había robado 5 millones de dólares. Así que ya no era un venerable poeta, sino un viejo cantante arruinado y olvidado del sexo.

Para ganar dinero hay que trabajar. Eso está claro. Leonard sacó un par de discos (uno, Ten new songs, bastante flojo; otro, Dear Heather, muy decente), pero no dieron los resultados económicos esperados; la crisis discográfica afecta a todos, ahora los artistas ganan dinero con los conciertos. Fue entonces cuando su página web anunció una gira mundial.

Varios meses, dudas, cancelaciones y recuperaciones después, Cohen llega a Benicasssim. Dos horas antes del concierto no hay nadie en la explanada del escenario verde. Una hora antes aparece algún periodista y unos pocos vips; en el escenario, los pipas preparan los instrumentos. Cuarenta minutos antes, sale Leonard Cohen y su banda. Ningún aplauso los recibe, no van a actuar, sino a la prueba de sonido. Durante un rato, una treintena de personas tenemos el lujo de disfrutar de un "concierto privado". Vemos al verdadero Cohen. Está tranquilo, habla con su gente, da instrucciones y bromea con el guitarrista. Tocan 4 canciones, casi la mitad de las que tocará en el concierto propiamente dicho. Después de cada una de ellas, sonríe y saluda a los asistentes. Viste de negro y lleva sombrero. El sol le cae en la cara; maldice el tiempo de España y se coloca unas gafas de sol de los años 80, acaso las mismas que llevaba en I'm your man. Corta una canción poco antes de acabar y se despide con un Hasta luego.

Entonces abren las vallas del festival y cientos de personas corren para colocarse en primera fila. Luego irán llegando más. Al inicio del concierto, ya son varios miles. Fuera del recinto, la gente se instala en una colina cercana para ver al maestro.

Es una ocasión única. Todos lo sabemos. Leonard Cohen lleva sin tocar 15 años y ésta es su única parada en España. El sitio no es el más apropiado, y el show será más corto de lo que acostumbra -3 horas- pero no importa: hay que verlo.

No defraudó. Leonard Cohen salió puntual al escenario y fue recibido, esta vez sí, por una sonora ovación. Tocó diez temas, durante una hora exacta. Fue breve pero intenso. Las canciones, elegidas a conciencia. Suzanne, The Future, Bird on the wire... y para terminar, So long, Marianne. El momento mágico de la noche coincidió con Hallelujah. Gracias quizá a las múltiples versiones de este tema -desde John Cale a Rufus Winwright-, todos los asistentes corearon el estribillo.

Una grata sorpresa fue el buen estado de Leonard Cohen. Algunos pensábamos que el cantante se mantendría hierático detrás del micrófono, y que su ronca voz se escudaría en los coros que le acompañaban. Para nada. Su voz suena mas potente que en sus discos y que en la última gira. Cantar para él no es un mero trámite. Cohen se arrodilla, se levanta, agarra el micrófono con fuerza y mira al cielo para gritar su oración.

Ahora sólo queda esperar que vuelva a España en su gira de otoño. Mientras, podemos dar gracias a su manager."
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Diane
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Re: Benicassim, July 20th

Postby Diane » Sat Jul 26, 2008 8:43 am

It's nice to read the comments and reviews above. For a while I thought I would be the only person there.
Chema wrote:The Spanish review translated:

'What disrespect', commented outraged a man who was over 50 before requesting silence a group of British, beer in hand and with little desire for tranquility.

Thanks for that gem. There are far too many British people who make their way over to Spain, giving us all a bad name with their beer in hand and little desire for tranquility (although everyone at this venue seemed to me to be well-behaved).

My only complaint about this appearance of Leonard's was that it was too brief, but then I always knew that it would be. Just ten songs, with very little of the usual band introductions, or asides, and of course no Thousand Kisses Deep.

When Sean, Sylvia and I arrived at the festival, the queue to get into the area where Leonard would be playing, the Escenario Verde, was already quite long. That meant that when they opened the gates, there was no chance to get anywhere near the front. In the rush for position, we got separated, and yet it felt very satisfying to be alone far from home at an LC gig.

As the crowd waited for Leonard and the band to come onstage, I talked to a lovely woman named Ana in her 30s from Le Pays Basque. I also talked to a group of Spanish teenagers who were in awe that they were about to see Leonard Cohen, and to a couple in their 50s from Toronto who found out too late about the Canadian concerts, but happened to be holidaying in Spain that week and had seen the festival advertised on a billboard in Madrid.

And then Leonard appeared, and it was just me and him. And as usual I can't write about that.

At one point in the show, after Everybody Knows, Xavier went to town on the Spanish guitar, and I turned around to see the hot sun lowering in the sky, silhouetting the beautiful rugged mountains that were the backdrop to the venue. Another Spanish touch was the crickets sounding off very loudly in the grassy areas on the way in and out of the festival. Walking out, mingled with the crickets and the distant sounds of other bands and parties, was the lovely sound of Enrique Morente and his band playing some flamenco numbers. (We couldn't stay after Leonard, Anne, as I had to get a train back to Valencia.)

So, this time it had definitely been Leonard with a festive Spanish flavour. The venue was ideal, and the audience highly responsive and appreciative.

I don't have any photos that are not mostly comprised of people's heads, phones or arms.
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mnkyface
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Re: Benicassim, July 20th

Postby mnkyface » Sun Jul 27, 2008 12:11 pm

More photos from the FIB foto site:
http://flickr.com/photos/fiberfib/26957 ... 220811496/
http://flickr.com/photos/fiberfib/26863 ... 220811496/
http://flickr.com/photos/fiberfib/26868 ... 220811496/
http://flickr.com/photos/fiberfib/26957 ... 220811496/
http://flickr.com/photos/fiberfib/26949 ... 220811496/

Leonard and Enrique Morente are featured on the homepage of FIB, with the caption: Gracias Amigos!
http://www.fiberfib.com/

And no one has said it so I will: How awesome is the vest/rolled up sleeves/new hat??? 8)
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friscogrl
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Re: Benicassim, July 20th

Postby friscogrl » Sun Jul 27, 2008 3:39 pm

great pictures Mnkyface, thanks for posting them. He does look good in the vest with his shirt sleeves rolled up. And the tribly is a nice touch. He looks relaxed but still debonairre.

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Diane
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Re: Benicassim, July 20th

Postby Diane » Mon Jul 28, 2008 9:40 pm

Ah, thanks for putting those links up, mnkyface. I also enjoyed your pictures, Juan Luis Corcobado.

So you guys in the States call what we over here call a waistcoat, a vest. I would have been very surprised to see Leonard onstage in his vest :shock: . I did not realise that was the first time he had rolled up his sleeves or got that black hat to replace the grey one, but I just checked the Lisbon thread and yes he was still wearing a suit jacket then. One of the Webb Sisters went entirely sleeveless in Spain. I imagine that you men are hoping for yet hotter weather for the last few dates of the summer tour.
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ps, from rgaynavarro and Toni/ FYS I learnt that I spelt Javier incorrectly oops.

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