by Hywel Roberts Contributor | Photos by Justine Trickett / Fanatic

Tags: Catfish & The Bottlemen, Belle And Sebastian, Festival Number 6 

Belle & Sebastian, Steve Coogan, Catfish + The Bottlemen rule Festival No.6

It's another beautiful day at Portmeirion


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Festival Number 6 day two review photos Belle Sebastian Steve Coogan Photo: Justine Trickett / Fanatic
The good times at Festival No.6 rolled on with huge appearances from Belle & Sebastian, Steve Coogan and Catfish & The Bottlemen yesterday (Saturday 5 September). 

Portmeirion basked in glorious sunshine on the second day of Festival No 6. The slightly soggy atmosphere of the first day was swiftly forgotten as people took full advantage of the water-based activities in the Estuary and the ice cream sellers finally remembered why they'd made the trip to North Wales.

Partly as a consequence of this the early part of the day belonged to the fringe elements on offer. On the Estuary Stage Howard Marks lulled people back into the festival spirit with his soothing Welsh tones and genial stories about taking acid at Oxford University. These days the flowing locks are gone, a symptom of his serious health prolbems, ans have been replaced with a cropped silver style. But none of those health problems are reflected in his on stage persona. He is still as engaging and laconic as ever and the large crowd gathered lapped up his anecdotes and musings readily.

The woodland walk was also a very popular feature in the sunshine. Trance-starved revellers flocked to the many pop up stages to experience the kind of wooded raves you imagine Jarvis Cocker was singing about on Sorted For Es and Whizz. And in truth there is a fairly high chance that at least a few of them left an important part of their brain somewhere in a field in Gwynedd.

On the Central Piazza the wonderful Dream Themes, consisting of members of Frank Sidebottom's former backing band, delight the sun-baked crowd with an array of popular TV theme songs. The inter-song patter is almost as good as the songs themselves and they even invite audience member on stage to play their original game show Shenanigans (which consisted entirely of a round of Blinking of Winking).

Photo: Scott Salt / Fanatic

Steve Coogan then enthralled a huge gathering on the same stage with stories of Alan Partridge, 24-Hour Party people and his less than successful attempts to help Labour into power in the 2015 general election.

But the mainstream music started to make its own case in the early evening. James Bay really packed them in on Stage No 6 with the kind of hit-filled set that eases the transition from afternoon to night time. By the time closer Hold Back the River rang out everyone was firmly in the mood for more barnstorming guitar epics.

Thankfully for them local blokey anti-heroes Catfish and the Bottlemen were up next. They brought a swagger and machismo to proceedings that made you realise how rare a quality that is in 2015. Belle and Sebastian brought proceedings to a close with a steady hand and melodic tunefulness that will never get old. One some of their quieter moments (which is pretty much all of them) they were in danger of being overpowered by the more muscular music coming from the nearby stages, but by the time an orchestrated stage invasion accompanies The Boy with the Arab Strap all doubts have been put to one side and goodwill rules the day once more.

Lastly, a slight correction from yesterday. Gigwise reported that Craig Charles DJed at the Rum Tent. Gigwise can confirm it did dance like an idiot in the early hours on Saturday morning to a DJ it firmly believed to be Craig Charles. But it has since become apparent it was in no way, shape of form the Red Dwarf and Coronation Street actor. The true identity of the mystery DJ remains unclear (it was probably Bez). So, er sorry about that. But it has been independently verified that Craig Charles did DJ in the early hours of Sunday morning and was very good.

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