Harru's Blog

October 26, 2009

A Review Of Swn. Thursday.

Filed under: Uncategorized — tomharrrington @ 1:49 pm

Having recently returned to Cardiff after an absence of 8 years, this was my first experience of the Welsh capital’s attempt at what Alexei JoFo describes as ‘one of those my city is a festival’ things, and it compares very favourably to Nottingham and Sheffield’s efforts. With most venues within a 5 minute walk of each other it’s nice and compact, pulling decent and enthusiastic crowds throughout the 3 days.

My festival started on the Thursday night in Dempseys slightly grotty but adequate upstairs function room, with Cardiff’s entire Scottish population cheering on Celtic on Tv downstairs. After rushing home from work and back into town I miss the first band, but am there in time for Fredrick Stanley Starr to kick things off with a set of harmony laden folky pop, more than a little reminiscent of Fleet Foxes, which is pleasant but unlikely to get the earth moving. That task is left to Islet, a six or seven (possibly even eight) piece instrument-swapping, multi vocalist whooping extravagance, with a huge aversion to discernible time signatures and conventional melodies. Highly enjoyable, and the first band I think I’ve seen to use a radiator as an instrument. Next up is, to my disappointment, not Elvis, but Evils, who continue to keep the crowd bouncing with some drum and bass tinged electro, but are perhaps one or two more memorable tracks away from a really good set. I had no idea what to expect from the night’s headliners, Zun Zun Egui, but it’s fair to say I wasn’t expecting an hour long set of loud, African influenced, swirling psychedelic rock. They appear to divide the crowd, of which a large proportion cannot get enough of the epic 20 minute finale, but a similar amount, myself included, feel that it was possibly 6 or 7 jams too far. That’s Thursday finished then and with work in the morning I head home for an earlyish night.

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