Lose Yourself at Sonar Reykjavik and Banish the February Blues for Good
Even our most miserable writer is heartened at the thought of trekking to Iceland for one of Europe's most beloved festivals.
February. Between the sludge of your mornings, the gruel of your days, the thin blankness of your evenings: a tiny remembrance. Sniggering into Rush Hour Crush on a packed out commuter train, half of you wishing and always disappointed that it's not, and will never be you. Remembering that you still haven't 'bled' the radiator and that means another night with no central heating, teeth chattering in your skull, and the same tasteless slop masquerading as dinner.
Remembering summer and all of the expensive, overdraft welcoming joy it brought. It all seems so unreal, so very long ago. So very far away. The pointless nights at pubs 45 minutes and 2 busses away. The 30 quid Ubers home. The pollution heat. The festivals.
Ah, the festivals. The summer festivals. The vast squalor of weekends spent in a field listening to stuff you like, surrounded by people you probably despise, rinsing money you don't have on a pursuit you spend the rest of the year conning yourself into thinking you've grown out of. The bum bags. The glitter. Man handing on misery to man, one Nos balloon at a time.
This is your mind in now. You're lean, you're poor, you're cold. Your skin frayed, your eyes sallow. You are a mess, frankly. What are you looking forward to? Getting a half price pack of hake fillets at Lidl? Is that it? Is that what you're reduced to?
You don't have to be that person, though. Be someone else, be someone who is off to Sonar Reykjavik later this month (16-18) and then laugh at your sad-sack former self in the mirror. Berate him and congratulate yourself for circumventing those feelings of joylessness, of hanging on, of futility. Do all that by doing something that you thought only existed for cruise-bound retirees and dangerous early-30 somethings with a deviant "finding themselves" itch to scratch. Yep, they're doing something with their February. They're off to a winter festival. And so are you.
And it is, in all truth, a screamer on the horizon. De La Soul, Fat Boy Slim, Ben Klock Helena Hauff. Giggs, Terrordisco and a tonne more will be doing their thing across various stages. The real sell, outside the line-up is the idea of hunkering down against the Icelandic winter and arctic darkness in what can only be described as an 'intimate' setting (3500 capacity), while smashing down goblets of mid-range festival lager. There's a healthy mix between the marquee and the local, as you'd expect from anything bearing the Sonar name, with particular space given over to the thriving Icelandic rap scene.
February. If Sonar Reykjavik proves anything, it's that it doesn't have to be this way. You can have Iceland itself over an Iceland pizza.
Sonar Reykjavik takes place between the 16th and 18th of February. Head here for more information.