“Everything’s new”: Prague’s Metronome festival returns after three years

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds

The capital’s biggest music festival, Metronome Prague, kicks off on Thursday, with Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds, Beck and Underworld among the host of international and Czech artists performing. Metronome was cancelled the last two years due to Covid and I asked founder David Gaydečka how it had been organising the festival after such a long gap.

David Gaydečka | Photo: Ian Willoughby,  Radio Prague International

“Well, it makes us feel like we are just about to start – something like we did 20 years ago [laughs] when we decided to do the first edition of [sister festival] United Islands.

“Everything’s new, people are new in the business.

“So yeah, it’s big improvisation that will result in a great celebration.”

When Covid was going on and on and on did you ever consider forgetting about Metronome and just dropping the idea of this big festival in Prague?

“No. If I look at the history of human society music was always here, as was sharing and community.

“So we stuck to the view that whenever Covid will leave us it was also up to us to decide how we will manage so that people will come back and be happy to share life and culture and experience.”

The headliners this year are Nick Cave, Beck and Underworld, and of course there are also a lot of other interesting artists. Who in particular are you looking forward to seeing this year?

“For sure the headliners will be very special.

Go_A | Photo: Metronome Festival

“But I am looking forward to Go_A, a Ukrainian band that was in the top five at Eurovision last year. They will start the day tomorrow [Thursday].

“I’m looking forward to Everything Everything, the British cult club group; sometimes when I listen to them I feel that it sounds like as if Peter Gabriel would be a young guy now [laughs] and would do his music nowadays.

“So that will be a great show, after Beck.

“Also I wonder what will happen on Saturday, because this is the first year we are opening the festival up to the hip-hop scene and there are some cool names coming.”

For people who have been to the festival in the past, how will this year’s look? Is there anything new that you’re introducing this year?

“Last time they went to the Metronome Prague event it was two days – and this year it’s four days.

Source: Metronome Festival

“Actually we are starting with a benefit with Ukrainian artists today [Wednesday] and we will finish Sunday morning.

“Also the last time people came the Expo Prague grounds [Výstaviště], just next to Stromovka, was just being refurbished and rebuilt, and people saw that the space was changing, but it was still in the beginning.

“And because Covid cancelled lots of events there was time to fix the area, and we thank the team that worked on the site for what they did.

“People will see brand new pavilions for after parties.

“They will see lots of green areas. The area will be quite cool.”

Nick Cave and the Bad Seeds are performing on the first night of Metronome Prague.