Festival Review: Festival No. 6

Billed as a festival unlike any other, Festival No. 6 takes over the surreal setting of Portmeirion village best known as the backdrop to cult 60s’ series The Prisoner. There are references to the show throughout the site and headliners on the main stage this year included Franz Ferdinand closing proceedings in style with vocalist Alex Kapranos kitted out in full Patrick McGoohan attire.

The Grand Pavilion also drew big crowds playing host to some of the most popular acts of the weekend; nostalgia with A Certain Ratio, an incredible set from The Horrors, the much hyped Goat Girl, laid back wordsmith Baxter Dury and a stunning performance from Gwenno.

Curating Tim Peaks Diner, Tim Burgess brought a stack of his favourite new bands along with The Lovely Eggs a highlight on Friday and a strong start to Sunday from Manchester’s Fuzzy Sun. Keeping himself busy, Tim also played with bandmate Mark and the Joe Duddell No. 6 Ensemble at the village’s Central Piazza, finishing with a stripped back cover of The Cure’s The Caterpillar before moving on to a full Charlatans’ set on the main stage.

Working in partnership with BBC Cymru, Gorwelion Horizons set up base at The Bandstand showcasing contemporary independent music in Wales with Adwaith and I See Rivers amongst a stream of impressive local artists. Elsewhere in the village a variety of music, poetry, comedy, wellbeing and performance art offered up something for everyone.

With questions hanging over the future of the event, organisers have issued a statement to say that ‘the profile of the festival has far outgrown its intimate capacity… unfortunately No. 6 is just not sustainable in its current format and so we’ve made the difficult decision to take a breather – 2018 will be the last Festival No. 6 for now’. Fingers crossed that No. 6 will return in whatever form it needs to move forward; in an overflowing festival marketplace it really does stand out from the crowd.

Review & Photography by Siobhan O’Driscoll: 16beasleystphotography.com

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