Perfume pull out of the 2022 Primavera Sound Festival

Perfume pull out of the 2022 Primavera Sound Festival | Random J Pop

When Perfume giveth, Perfume taketh away.

Perfume released a new song last week. But it came only a day after the fax went out that Perfume had pulled out of a European gig.

Back in May of 2021, Perfume had announced that they would be playing at the Primavera Sound Festival, which was a complete surprise that left the Prfm fandom in the Spanish quarter and those willing to travel there, excited. But a year later, which brings us to the present, Perfume announced that they’re pulling out of it. Perfume’s team cited the pandemic and ‘unstable world situations’ (i.e Russia’s invasion of Ukraine) as the reasons why.

Perfume talked about their choice to pull out of the Primavera Sound Festival on their radio show. It was tough to listen to. Not due to the disappointment. But because a-chan was fully in that higher pitched, nasally Perfume voice that she puts on. I woulda much preferred to have heard this news from Kashiyuka, as she’s blunt as hell, and would have told us the real tea. But I guess this is exactly why a-chan is the only one who talks.

I originally wrote a whole post about being in two minds on Perfume’s decision, and being a bit sceptical of it. But then I thought ‘none of it really matters’, because...I get it.

Over the course of the past two weeks, I’ve received a whole bunch of ‘I’ve got COVID’ texts and photos of positive lateral flow tests. The pandemic is still very much here. COVID made its world debut in 2020 and is on a long term residency. This bitch ‘bout to have a longer run than The Lion King on Broadway. And I’m sure Perfume seeing Kyary’s second Coachella weekend performance without her dancers made them say ‘Bitch, did they catch COVID?’ which was my immediate thought. 

As for all of the mess in Ukraine? I also get it. Perfume probably feel hesitant about flying so far away from home and being closer to it all than they would like to be. Being in a whole other country can be daunting enough as it is, without wondering if you’re going to get caught up in some invasion which is happening a few countries over.

If Perfume don’t feel safe playing a gig in another country, then who am I to question that? Especially in light of very real reasons that I myself also pull out of a gig for.

It’s just a shame. Perfume performing at such a large festival in Europe would have been another milestone for the group following three world tours (I’m not counting World Tour 1st as a world tour) and a set at Coachella. And with the way that J-pop, K-pop and world music is starting to get placements at festivals and shows, the next big gig festival that could end up following suit is Glastonbury; which I could honestly see Perfume performing at one day.

It’s also been a while since Perfume performed outside of Japan. And with there being so much buzz at Coachella around representation of world music, thanks in part to the likes of 88rising, Kyary Pamyu Pamyu, Stromae and also Perfume themselves; it was boding well for how they’d be received at the Primavera Sound Festival, and the fact that Perfume managed to book the gig in the first place.

I’d honestly never heard of the Primavera Sound Festival until this year, due to my bitches Jessie Ware, Rina Sawayama and Perfume themselves all sharing that they’d be there. The Primavera line-up is so strong, and Perfume being a part of it contributed to that. So it’s a shame they will no longer be a part of it, and if they will ever get to be again. But they chose to prioritise safety, and I can’t be mad at that. Shout-outs to responsible pop stars.

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