With a riot of color and sound, the six-week-long cultural extravaganza known as Festival Sucede came to close Saturday, November 18, in Guadalajara’s Plaza Liberacion.
Over the course of its run, Festival Sucede entertained spectacle-hungry Tapatios with a dizzying array of music, puppetry, theater, circus acrobatics and beyond – a multi-faceted presentation to rival its much older cousin, the venerable Festival Cervantino in Guanajuato.
The show’s three biggest draws were slated, naturally, to perform during the latter half of the evening, after the sun had slipped behind the towering spires of the city’s alpha church.
At 8:30 p.m., Sonido Gallo Negro, an ensemble from Mexico City often described as purveyors of “psychedelic cumbia,” took the stage. Mainly vocal-less, the band uses fuzzed out, twangy electric guitars, keyboards and strange instruments such the theremin to create a propulsive, eerie soundscape, one well complimented by a pleasantly assaultive light show.
At 10 p.m., Pato Machete, a rapper of Falstaffian proportions and demeanor, took the stage for a set of head-bobbing 90s-era hip-hop, utilizing a spartan stage set-up consisting of a guitar player, a DJ, and a more diminutive – but much more excitable – sidekick/booster MC.
Last, but not least – especially for those raised in California – was Ozomatli, a veteran Los Angeles-based group which never fails to light a fire under concertgoers, even ones who may have been on their feet in Plaza Liberacion for over seven hours.
And that, as they say, was that. Festival Sucede, just two years old but maturing rapidly, had shown Guadalajara residents it meant business with a final sonic blast of joyful celebration. Tapatios can surely look forward to bigger and better things from the festival next year.
(Music fans may be interested to know that Sonido Gallo Negro will be performing on a bill with Madrid combo De la Purissima, Tuesday, November 28, 9 p.m., as a part of the city’s annual International Book Fair – Expo Guadalajara, November 25-December 1.)