Three Trapped Tigers – SWN Festival

By Tom Aylott

Punktastic recently visited South Wales to catch a few bands at SWN fest 2011, and first up was SUMMER CAMP at Cardiff Arts Institute. The quirky, corridor like bar was rammed for the early evening performance, and the band’s upbeat female fronted alt-indie was a gentle and welcome introduction to SWN.

Next, and over at Clwb For iBach, GALLOPS took to the stage downstairs and give everyone a lesson in instrumental performance. The band’s live show is perfectly suited to the downstairs venue at the legendary club, and there’s no doubt that they’re at the forefront of the new breed of progressive bands that neither need or desire or a vocalist. The instrumental “scene” has some really excellent artists coming through at the moment, and Gallops constantly show why they should be considered amongst the best of them.

A quick jump upstairs reveals the beginning of Brit-Pop revivalists TOWN‘s set. The band draw fairly shamelessly on some big names from the mid to late nineties for their sound, but also reach back further to bands like The Clash an add in their own spin on things to create a stripped down sound that narrowly avoids sounding out of date. The band are excellent live, and though it’s going to be important for the band to try and avoid getting written off as a purely throwback pleasure, there’s definitely the potential for them to do great things.

Finally, and basically the number one reason for us making the trip across to a bright and crisp Caerdydd for the weekend, was THREE TRAPPED TIGERS. Their recent music videos have been grabbing them plenty of attention, but if you’ve any interest in the more progressive end of rock at all, then you need to paying attention to this band. Great on record, but live, the band are something behold. The band brought Clwb’s downstairs venue to a close emphatically with a memorable set that was impossible not to feel transfixed by.

Saturday evening of SWN involved four great bands, and as we got an early night with a cup of tea* ahead of a busy Sunday, Cardiff was buzzing after a great day of music – and we’re absolutely gutted we couldn’t have got their for the Thursday and Friday nights.

*this is actually 100% true**
**okay, we had a few beers afterwards