LIVE: Swn Festival – Day 2

By Chris Marshman

The rain descends on Cardiff on what is a very wet second day of Swn Festival 2013, not that the weather has dampened any spirits, Swn is in full flow now and the Friday line up boasts some of the best up and coming UK talent.

Up first is Welsh songstress Casi Wyn along with her backing band entertaining those who have turned up and in all honesty the whole set is mesmerising. The atmosphere is only enhanced by the incredible setting of the Angel hotel and with songs sung in both Welsh and English while sat at a keyboard, it’s abundantly clear that Casi Wyn is hugely talented. Casi is now based in London so I would not at all be surprised to be hearing a lot more from her in 2014.

Thankfully we manage to beat the crowds into Clwb Ifor Bach to catch Heavy Petting Zoo as the venue quickly has to operate a one in one out system, the downstairs section is packed out and it’s easy to see why. The band come on stage accompanied by a man who spends the entire set jive dancing in front of the band. It’s not immediately clear as to whether it’s an over enthusiastic member of the audience or part of the act, for the record it’s the latter and it was fucking brilliant. The band put in an incredibly impressive shift too, the energy is phenomenal throughout and by the end of the set which comes in the form of an instrumental, you’re left one hundred percent wanting more. The band of the weekend so far.

The great thing about Swn Festival is that the majority of the venues are close by, meaning that when the weather turns to absolute shit,you’re only a minute or so walk away from some great music. The Four Bars venue is our next stop to catch fast rising rockers Radkey who hugely impress, the energy on display is massive and even though the set barely hits 25 minutes it’s okay because the venue is disgustingly hot anyway.

With Clwb Ifor Bach nigh on impenetrable thanks to how incredibly busy it was, Four Bars remains our venue for the rest of the evening with Beard Of Wolves putting in a set that brims with intensity, the two piece band featuring just a drummer and a bassist make more noise than a lot of three piece bands I’ve seen and it’s good noise too. The band leave the stage to a typically fast paced conclusion and the crowd is left pretty stunned at what they’ve just seen.

With Day 2 coming to a conclusion, it’s left to Samoans to close it out and they do well, the new material sounds gargantuan and the band look fully comfortable with it. There are some vocal issues but it’s to the band’s testament that they power through and put in a fucking ideal closer to the Friday of Swn Festival 2013.