Within a packed UK summer festival season, it can sometimes be hard to tell the difference between some of the gatherings. Formulaic and occasionally with the same set of artists schlepping from one ‘marquee in a field’ to another, some can lack their own identity. But that certainly can’t be said of 110 Above, which somehow manages to achieve that perfect combination of delivering a small, intimate, and quirky event while still attracting the hefty names from across the music world.
This year’s line up was a beast of an indie billing. Opening up the main stage on Sunday, Spinn gave a high energy performance full of pop-indie tunes, and included some impressive dance moves from frontman Jonny Quinn.
Circa Waves pumped up the energy with their hard hitting indie choruses, opening up mosh pits and creating excitement throughout their set. They are a band who have come a long way in a relatively short time and have the sense of a band in it for the long-haul and for whom longevity won’t be a problem.
A new song addition to Blaenavon’s setlist Catatonic Skinbag gives a glimpse into what to expect for their new album, which they wrapped up last month. A combination of pessimistic lyrics with strong riffs makes this one to watch for the future.
Sunday headliners Peace were big favourites. Playing Ocean’s Eye as a request from the crowd (a song that they have only played a couple of times since their tour in 2012), was one very much appreciated by their hardcore fans. Theirs was a great set with superb musicianship and emotive lyrics in songs such as From Under The Liquid Glass – a great choice of band to finish the festival on.
Other major highlights across the weekend included excellent sets from Anteros, Hey Charlie, Jerry Williams, Marika Hackman, Sea Girls, High Tyde, DECO, Flyte and Fickle Friends among many others.
Aside from the music, there was plenty else going on. Evening entertainment included fire dancing and acoustic sessions which all served to enhance the incredibly relaxed feel to the festival.
It was a brilliant weekend, very well organised and with an intimate atmosphere that certainly created a very unique feel compared to other festivals on the circuit – possibly only Barn On The Farm pulls off this ‘small but significant’ festival act anywhere near as well as this.
Photos by Rebecca Cribb