Bizkaia BIME LIVE, the biggest indoor festival of the autumn, took place in Bilbao on 1st and 2nd November. A splendid seventh edition, more than consolidated, presented a line-up of national and international artists that thrilled the audience that packed the BEC!, Bilbao Exhibiton Centre.
The festival surpassed the attendance figures of previous years, with more than 21,000 people, 64% of whom came from outside Bizkaia, mainly from the cities of Madrid, Barcelona, Valencia, Vitoria-Gasteiz and Donostia, and internationally from France, the United Kingdom, Germany, Italy and Portugal.
Furthermore, the commitment to sustainability and the desire to minimize impact are now an essential part of the festival, which has the prestigious Erronka Garbia certificate, created by the Basque Government through the environmental management company Ihobe.
The audience that gathers in the different atmospheres offered by BIME LIVE is very diverse, made up of the youngest, who give themselves up to the freshest and most urban programme at Goxo, the night owls and electronic music lovers at Gaua, the gourmet audience at the Antzerkia stage and the unconditional fans who surrender to the careful selection of artists that always guarantees this event.
On the first day of the festival, the 3D show by the German electronic pioneers Kraftwerk and the performance by Foals in one of the first live presentations of their recent Everything Not Saved Will Be Lost were the highlights, although from early in the afternoon there was no shortage of people on the five stages where new talents such as the Basque duo First Girl On The Moon, as well as renowned artists such as Enric Montefusco, performed. The Madrid band Morgan and the Navarrese Amaia brought a large crowd to the Antzerkia stage.
The afternoon at the Heineken started with First Girl on the Moon, and at 2.00 DJ Röyksopp got everyone dancing, as did Kamixlo at the Goxo, after Kaydi Cain, King Doudou and French producer and vocalist Coucou Chloe.
Jamiroquai were the big stars of the second and last day of BIME LIVE, although it was announced at the beginning of the concert that Jay Kay was suffering from a sudden laryngitis. In spite of that, he gave his all and nobody left disappointed after dancing to all his hits. And he wasn’t the only one whose health played a dirty trick, as Michael Kiwanuka had to cancel his performance.
On the Antzerkia stage, meanwhile, Irishman Glen Hansard‘s performance, which kicked off five minutes later, drew the loudest ovation. The musician, whose musical career began on the streets of Dublin at the age of 13 and who gained considerable global notoriety thanks to his role in the film Once (Oscar for best song) fascinated the audience. The same effect that Mark Lanegan had achieved earlier in the same venue. With seats and a stage set framed by a red velvet curtain and an exquisite programme, Antzerkia was once again one of the most visited venues over the two days, where we were able to enjoy the sensation of being in an intimate space, like a small theatre, despite the thousands of people in attendance.
Throughout Saturday 2nd, there was a succession of simultaneous performances by Carolina Durante with her traditional guitar rock, Brittany Howard and Róisín Murphy, Banpiro Mitaleak (Mursego + Amorante), Mark Lanegan Band, Glen Hansard, Park Hye Jin and Helena Hauff, among others.
The Divine Comedy, the emblematic British indie band of Neil Hannon, one of the most influential and charismatic pop songwriters of the last decades, kicked off on Saturday at BIME LIVE their tour to present Office Politics, the new album that will be released on June 7th. Recorded between Ireland and London and written, produced and arranged by Hannon himself, it consists of 16 tracks full of inventive and timeless music.
The BIME LIVE weekend ensures the extension of the experience with the parallel promotions in gastronomy and culture that are a privilege in Bilbao, to complete the musical offer. The Athletic Club de Bilbao Museum, the Fine Arts Museum and the offer of Basquery, the cosmopolitan and fresh gastronomic concept that includes a bread bakery and craft beer brewery or Txocook, at the foot of the pier with the smell of the sea, are some of the proposals that have made this year’s BIME LIVE such a complete experience that we are already looking forward to the eighth edition. Long live BIME LIVE!