So we move onto Friday, of course it was undoubtedly going to be more busy, but only because of the classier bands playing.
Kicking off in Clwb again and where we stay most the night… well, if we were to go on first impressions here. FICTION look and sound like something from the 90s, easily could fit into an episode of Doctor Who. Another band with duelling drummers, but with a difference – they use the same set of drums at the same time. An intriguing performance, and played smoothly but only moderately interesting, and when we say interesting… that was the drum part.
The front man of BRANDYMAN has a certain character about him, as if he puts on he’s drunk and careless to the world, or he probably just is. Nonetheless, they have a familiar fan base drifting around the room who enjoy and marvel at this mysterious character. “Anyone like ponies? …anyone like ponies with wings?” sparks an interesting response. Musically, they’re just another band, but you’re too taken by this showman in a suit dancing, and provoking you. It’s almost as if you must enjoy this band. In fact, we do.
I’ve never seen a need to include a cowbell for cool points until this WE//ARE//ANIMAL. The keyboardist clearly thought it was a good idea and the others just let him get on with it. But an out of time cow bell through out the whole set does get rather annoying… fast. They have some good moments, some bad, as a clearly blunt front man isn’t impressed with the crowd shying away, and shuns us ‘paparazzi’. But we’d still recommend them… to an extent.
Heading back upstairs, look who it is, Kelson from FOTL. Or ex FOTL now, as he’s here as new blood with TRUCKERS OF HUSK to perform instrumentals, with the occasional synth vocal samples thrown in for… well.. variety. Deep, pacey, the sort of music you could imagine being used as background tracking on a game. Plus it’s a band with Kelson in it, what more do you want.
Over the road to watch another local, THE LAST REPUBLIC. Considering these boys are hyped for big things, local and have the charm of saints, it was disappointing to see a sparse Y Fuwch Goch. A band who’s songs feels like anthems bigger than some of the headliner acts put together at Swn, it’s was a shame to see it go to waste.
“I still love this band” shouts a punter behind me, to which you can see why when THE EX doddle on stage, and obviously are not quite the young we were expecting, like much of this festival. But who is Swn to discriminate against age and talent. They’re still fresh, exciting, and still quite jerky and playful around the stage. The guitarist is definitely taking this in and enjoying as much as he can which makes him a rather joyful handful to watch. Occasionally showing us some swish moves, and playing his guitar with a drumstick and the palm of his hand.