Following the success of the inaugural festival in 2018, Portstock returns for a second year. The day event, boasting talent from around the country as well as some of South Wales’ finest has changed location and month, moving to Rodney Parade from Tredegar Park and from August to June with the hope of catching some sun…and why not!
This year’s headliner comes in the shape of double BRIT award winning hip hop/trip hop/electronic Stereo MCs. Their BRIT Awards for Best British Group and Best album of the year may seem like a long time ago (ok, so 1994 was a long time ago), but they’re still a massive pull on the festival scene in the UK and the rest of Europe and will put on a massive show, with hits such as “Connected” and “Step It Up” guaranteed highlights.
Supporting the Stereo MC’s are an array of talent both new and, let’s say, older. Newport’s own Darling Buds have been there and done it back in the late 80s and early 90s when indie music was distinctively indie music. Re-formed back in 2013, they retained an impressive fanbase during their hiatus, backed up by a string of shows across the country, including a packed Le Pub back in February, marking the 30th anniversary of their top 25 album “Pop Said…”.
Also representing Newport is Joe Kelly and the Royal Pharmacy, one of the most exciting bands to come out of the City in the last few years. Joe is born to perform and in the Royal Pharmacy has the backing band to match his star quality. Check out their brilliant ep “The Wheel” here.
Caldicot’s Rusty Shackle have another summer of festivals to look forward to including Isle of Wight and Towersey. Catch them play some tunes off their fantastic new album “The Raven, The Thief & The Hangman” as well as songs from their impressive back catalogue spanning nearly a decade. From the other direction, Cardiff’s The Rotanas are the latest and last act to be announced to play this year’s festival and will shower Rodney Parade with their infectious upbeat rock and roll.
Everyone loves a bit of a skank and Ska Monkeys will bring out your best and worst moves with their versions of hits from Madness, The Specials and The Selector et al. Dr Feelgood have been doing what they do for over 40 years…and that’s pure, unadulterated rock music, not for the faint-hearted.
The Karpets are a tribute band with the unusual twist in that they are fronted by the former singer of the band they are a tribute to! Tom Hingley, singer of Inspiral Carpets at their peak, when they had a string of top 40 singles and two top five albums in the early-mid 90s brings Madchester to Newport with classics such as “This is how it feels” and “Move”.
Music aside, there will be loads going on to keep everyone of all ages busy. It is promoted as a family friendly event with plenty of activities and workshops as well as a whole area designated to keep the little one entertained. Street food will be available from Parc Pantry, The Pod, The Welsh Ice Cream Shop (plus more) and Tiny Rebel beer will also be available on tap. Keeping it local, keeping it tasty.
Portstock is a St Davids Hospice Care event, with all profits going to this brilliant charity, who help thousands of people in South Wales every year. Tickets are priced at a very reasonable £22.40 for adults, with concessions, family and VIP group options also available. For all festival information including where you can purchase tickets, check out https://portstock.co.uk/. Get out there and support Newport, it’s gonna be a blast.