This weekend marks the end of Swn Festival 2017, which this year spanned across an entire month and featured several wonderful gigs including Songhoy Blues, The Amazons and, yet to come on Friday, Peace and Idles. This year Swn is going be rounded up by its Discovery Day – held across multiple venues featuring some of the best up-and-coming bands around right now. Our preview highlights 6 bands you shouldn’t miss seeing this Saturday:
Blending retro hip-hop beats with upbeat indie vocals, technicolor Chippenham groovers Bad Sounds promise to bring the party to Sŵn 2017. Fresh off the release of their hot and hazy disco-tinged EP “Mixtape 1”, brothers Callum and Ewan front a group that manage to shine through as fresh, loud, and all good things new music should be, despite their firmly nostalgic influences. After making fans groove up and down the country, Bad Sounds arrive in Cardiff to hype that’s well deserved, and their feel-good fusion is not to be missed as they continue their rise to the top.
Love of Everything at Swn Fest 2016
To anyone who’s had the pleasure of witnessing them on stage, Shame need no introduction. Feral guitars, biting lyricism and a mastery of the art of a gig that most bands would kill for fuse to create sets that’ll leave you sweaty, half-dead and basking in the type of political angst that generations are shaped by. Shame’s fearless live shows have led them to become one of the most in-demand rock acts of 2017, and for good reason – if you don’t go and find out what the noise is all about on Saturday, you’ll wish you did.
Shame at Green Man Festival 2017
Don’t let Pink Kink’s distinct lack of recorded discography discourage you from making room for them on your Sŵn schedule; the glitter-coated Liverpudlians need to be seen live for the full experience anyway. Shouty garage-punk mixed with kooky glam synths and a shiny-fantastical image make for an altogether eclectic vibe, with sounds that tangle and merge effortlessly from song to song and then seem to defy genre itself. Riotous on stage, the sonically-metamorphosing quintet show no shortage of provocative live presence, no matter where they find themselves. Remaining firm cult favourites in the North West despite their fairly recent debut, Pink Kink are on a mission to convert the rest of us – and it’s a mission I’m well up for.
Trudy and the Romance
Trudy and the Romance sound like what it feels like to fall in love and make a wonderful mess of it. Rough, idiosyncratic crooning and offcut doo-wop vibes create a warm helter-skelter of pop sentiment; velvety lyrics and vibrant desert-dust guitars amalgamate in heartfelt, mellow miscreations of pop. In the lead-up to their hotly-anticipated and aptly-named EP ‘Junkyard Jazz’, Trudy and the Romance seem only to be getting better and better, and as their old-school vibes reach new kaleidoscopic heights, you’d be a fool to pass them up at Sŵn this year.
Dream Wife at Swn Fest 2016
Swedish Death Candy
Noise-psych passionates Swedish Death Candy sound like you’ve slammed all the pedals you own onto one soundboard and then turned it up to 11. Signed to Hassle Records, they’re effortless in creating this massive, stompy, swampy wall of hard-psych sound; guitars wobble and lurch, the leery electro-fuzz bass hisses and snarls as if it’s something alive in itself and the whole thing comes together to make something rather wonderful indeed. Plus, they’ve got a really cool name. As in: “Hey man, who did you go see last weekend again?”
“Oh, just Swedish Death Candy” “Swedish Death Candy??”
“Swedish Death Candy.”
Estrons at Swn Fest 2016
YOWL grow in traction with every show they play and each murky release they give to us. The Peckham boys manage no small feat with their roughed-up versatility; they’re a band who can lurch from radiating bluesy apathy to roaring, twisted dysphoria and keep sharp throughout it all. YOWL are certainly gaining a very dedicated following, and it’s to no surprise for those who’ve heard their blustery storytelling themselves. Set to tangled backdrops of moody guitars, the ruminating howls of tracks such as recent release ‘Darkroom’ leave no mystery as to why the band deserve the popularity they do. Brooding and cutting all at once, YOWL snarl around the place like they own it – and very soon they may well.
Words by Bel Valerio
Photos by Jacob Winter