I came back from Sziget last week and then proceeded to be sick, celebrate my birthday in bed, and then celebrate my birthday with my family (which was a weekend full of capital D Drama). My nine-to-five has started and university is about to start, but I’ve told too many people that I would write about my festival experience to not do it1.
Sziget festival happens in Budapest every year since 1993. This was the 25th one and I was expecting it to be huge. Like, I was expecting them to make a surprise headliner announcement, for the Foo Fighters or Libertines to fly in on a helicopter and put on a huge show. None of that happened. What’s more, I recently discovered (like, after I came back home) that the festival owners have changed, and it seems like they have a very different idea of what the festival is going to look like from now on.
What it’s going to look like is a “young people thing” which I’m not a fan of. The headliners this year included The Chainsmokers, Hurts, Major Lazer, Iggy Azalea, and Macklemore & Ryan Lewis. The year my girlfriend went2 it was Muse, 30 Seconds to Mars, Iron Maiden, 69 Eyes, The Hives, etc. You can definitely see how it’s really done a 180 and changed direction.
But that’s not to say that there weren’t shows this year which I really enjoyed and to which I was really looking forward to.
The Best and Worst Performances of Sziget 2017
(Which I happened to see)
- Mac DeMarco
- Bad Religion
- The Vaccines
- Vince Staples
- Allah Las
- PJ Harvey
- The Doors Cover Band
- The Pretty Reckless
Kasabian were just hella energetic and their setlist was SOLID. All hits all the time.
Mac DeMarco was the show I was looking forward to the most, and the one that was exactly what I expected. He goofed off on stage, talked shit, fucked around, sang some, talked to the crowd. Love him!
Bad Religion were the biggest surprise. These old guys came on stage, and the singer was wearing a POLO SHIRT, and then they put on one hell of a show. Again, with them being around for this long, they had a lot of songs to choose from, and the flow of their setlist was amazing, and so was their energy.
Interpol sort of stood there and performed their songs, which was what I expected, so I’m not disappointed.
What I am disappointed in is The Pretty Reckless. I mean, I came in with my expectations low. I came there to hear Make Me Wanna Die and Somebody Mixed My Medicine and leave. But then they were so bad. Their sound SUCKED. Taylor SUCKED. And, like, I’m pretty sure she was wasted, cuz I’m 90% sure she had a little vom after she finished mumbling through the first song on their setlist.
Budapest was pretty cool. I’m not a huge fan, and I probably wouldn’t go back to just do touristy things. It felt like a mix of Vienna (downtown) and some smaller city in Ukraine (when you’re less downtown). Obviously, because they’re in the EU they have a better public transport system, and you can pay with a card everywhere, and there’s Nutella products available that I can only dream of in Kyiv, but other than that it was pretty average.
If you do go, you have to go to their public bathing houses. They’re really fancy, and I assume if you go in the winter it’s really cool when it’s cold outside but the water is still 32C. ALSO, if you buy a public transport pass for a week, you get a coupon to go to the bathhouses for free, so there’s no reason you shouldn’t.
There’s probably more to say, but leave your questions in the comments and I’ll answer here.