By James Bloomfield
Well… this was a surprise! A fun festival that packed in great local and international bands, with great organization and in the perfect venue – all in occasionally chaotic Panama!
Huge bands packed in this relatively cheap event, with Cienfue, Cafe Tacvba, Carlos Mendez and Astro all rubbing shoulders on the main stage. I personally thought this festival was excellent from beginning to end, with a really cool entrance divided into 3 “channels”. These all passed by different food stalls, grafitti exhibitions, live art, dance, and bars.
With a really chilled out vibe, the spread out picnic atmosphere began to get a little more intense as the sun set. This was all for the good, as the biggest acts were heading out onto the stage. Cienfue and Astro were particular favourites here, with enthusiastic and tautly played sets. Cienfue were accompanied by diablos, who rocked out on stage while they stomped through their greatest hits.
So, all in all, this was a learning experience for me. I had to go away and learn about 20 new bands, so Festival Verde 2013 may have ended up eating all my work time for at least a week, as I frantically youtubed the back catalogs of all of the bands. I can totally recommend this festival, a pre-cursor to the larger Festival Abierto. I hope it’s on next year, with an even bigger line up in the same venue. Worth every penny!