Preview : Summer of Love 2016Undegun Art Space, Wrexham : 9/10th September 2016
If Focus Wales is a sprawling, frenetic and eclectic bazaar of exciting new music that takes over Wrexham each May, its younger sibling, The Summer of Love, is an innovative pop-up shop just offering dazzling, immersive psychedelia.
The event is held in the Undegun Art Space in central Wrexham - the perfectly fitting post-industrial/commercial atmosphere of a former sports retail outlet, taken over in 2013 by the local creative community as soon as the last pair of cut price trainers were sold - then immediately, radically and energetically transformed into a vibrant gallery and venue.
The weekend will use both floors of the venue - which will be turned by the art group DATAMOSH, using light, video projection, giant sculpture and actors, into a captivating otherworldly stage set for a weekend of music, film and spoken word performances.
This second edition is headlined by the taut experimental rock and electronica of Gallops - a local band previously championed by Radio 1, 6Music & Mojo, who are reinvigorated after a hiatus, and on the verge of releasing their fourth album. BBC Radio Wales' Adam Walton has Gallops' comeback at Telford's Warehouse as his best gig of 2016 so far. They are joined on a skillfully crafted bill by 'Northern shoegazers' Sulk, the anarchic, edgy and experimental poet Sophie McKeand, sophisticated North Wales' art-pop meister Meilir and the 60s tinged Welsh psychedelia of CaStLeS.
All this is topped off with cultured DJ sets, food and also a special performance of a classic Muddy Waters album by a 'super group' of guest musicians.
The event is easy to reach by road or rail, definitely worth travelling for, and extraordinary value - on recent reports Gallops would more than likely justify the £12 whole weekend ticket price on their own.
Summer of Love takes place on Friday 9th / Saturday 10th September 2016 at Undegun, Wrexham, North Wales.
Weekend tickets are available at: www.summeroflovefestival.com for just £12 each.
Over 14s are welcome. Under 12s go free; all under 14s must be accompanied by an adult.
GALLOPS I Yours Sincerely, Dr. Hardcore (LP)
MEILIR I Arabella (Live)