UK sensation Kindness deliver their new breed of laid-back Soul on Saturday at Flow Festival.

Attendance at Flow Festival sets record

This year’s Flow Festival attracted a record-breaking 63.000 visitors over four event days, easily surpassing previous attendance numbers. The enlarged festival area allowed for greater capacity and although not all the days sold out, the festival was a great success by any measure. This was the ninth edition of Flow Festival, held in Suvilahti over the weekend, with an opening concert featuring Bon Iver earlier on Wednesday.

Friday got off to a bit of a rough start with cancellations by four artists, one at the very last minute. Due to this fact, the festival organizers made an exception to their no-refund policy and allowed unused Friday tickets to be returned. Even with the gaps in the program the cancelations caused, there was no shortage of excellent performances that day including Siinai and Moonface, Orchestra of Spheres, and Yann Tiersen.

On Saturday the festival kicked into high gear with great shows by UK critics darling, Kindness, Sleep ∞ Over, and the Black Keys on the main stage, to name a few of the highlights. Sunday saw Finland’s own Kuusumun Profeetta deliver a virtuoso performance, DāM Funk rock the crowd, and a spectacular closing concert from Iceland’s one and only Björk.

In addition to Flow’s excellent musical program, films, installations and the usual high standard of festival cuisine gave the visitors more than enough to see, do and experience. Helsinki’s position as Cultural Capital of the Year inspired some excellent new concepts such as the Fountain water bar and the Wasteland stage design competition. The winning design entry, “Balloon,” came from Slovenia, courtesy of Larisa Kazic, Tea Kogovsek, Nejc Lebar and Alja Koši, and was a grand addition to the atmosphere.

The Flow Festival shows no sign of losing steam and new ideas for the tenth edition, slated for next summer, are already being hatched. But first a well deserved rest for all the organizers who once again worked tirelessly to create such a unique and memorable event.

Robin DeWan