We all know that the weather is something you can’t control. The result is the biggest challenge this small, newly established festival yet faced, in previous years the weather’s been very agreeable, however the ire of the Gods descended upon the site, transforming it into a swampy quagmire. Of course, that’s nothing new for regular festival goers, who gritted their teeth, pulled on their welly boots and trudged their way to the festival site. Anyway, this isn’t a review of the weather, but a review of the music, so lets get cracking.
Awesome Location, Awesome Acts
The festival is famous not only for its absolutely stellar location at the provencal tourist villiage of Porthmerion, but also for booking some awesome acts, this year was no different.
Psychedelic revivalists Temples previewed some new material from their upcoming second album, which sounded suitably mesmerizing.
The Brythonaid Male Voice Choir was a universally agreed highlight, as they finished their set with a classic rendition of The Welsh National Anthem, to which the crowd joined with.
The Woods area is one of the festival’s signature environments, Porth Merion’s rich botanical gardens and surrounding woodlands provide the ideal setting for a day of woodland wandering. Ranging from Gottwood’s Tangled Woods stage which involved towering trees clamoured on by ravers. The understated Woodcutter’s stage sported mostly folk and acoustic acts, including a kazoo accompanied Ap Cooper.
It’s quite fortunate that Portmeirion’s labyrinthine nature lends itself perfectly in almost any weather situation, with its flamboyant jutting towers and classic halls are the ideal place to hide to explore some new music, while these artistically crafted buildings offered some shelter from any intermittent storms. The main festival site was fortunately, for the most part well tented also. Anyone with a willingness to wander and explore the grand location of the grounds likely had a wonderful time.
Main Stage Super Stars
The exception being the main stage of No6, but anyone there was in too high of spirits to be bothered anyway. Hot Chip brought the party with their brand of 2000’s indie-techno, bringing a host of dancers on stage, and whipping the crowd into a jump-up-and-down-party-frenzy on Saturday Night.
Sunday arrived, along with Wales’ own Super Furry Animals, who revelled in the Welsh-ness of the festival; you could tell that they preferred speaking in their mother tongue as they reguiled the crowd. They decimated the main crowd with rapturous renditions of and ‘The Man Don’t Give’, for which they had a quick momentary costume change, re-emerging as Yetis from their ‘Golden Retriever’ video.
The final act of the night, Britpop King Noel Gallagher surprised the festival, indeed the entirety of the UK Music scene when he brought out fellow mod-legend Paul Weller on stage. This brought the festival to a dramatic close with ‘A Town Called Malice’.
It’s a shame the weather conditions resulted in some people being stuck in the mud and having to be pulled out by tractors, but you’ll be pleased to hear that the situation is for the most being resolved. That’s all down to the wonderful farmers who cruised down on their tractors to rescue stranded revellers, towing them from the mud.
Well, fingers crossed the weather is better next year, eh? I’m there regardless! What a weekend!