This is the first Camden Crawl in its original stomping ground of NW1 since 2012, and the break has obviously made the organisers more ambitious in scope, as they have re-branded themselves as CC14, moved it from May bank holiday to midsummer weekend and booked 182 acts spread across 25 stages. It is an impossible task to cover it all, even though the venues are close together and a great smartphone app helped spread the word with artist previews and set times,so here is a set of condensed highlights.

Glasgow trio Paws were the first to really impress. Friday's set at the Underworld saw them wrestling with an out of control drum kit - "messier than a baby's nappy" - but they came through with flying colours. They have much in common with American bands of the mid-90s and they play a lot of energetic indie-rock focusing mostly on their new record Youth Culture Forever.

Tall Ships filled the performance space at Proud with their epic indie-rock, it was a shame that I only caught three songs, they sounded immense.

Back in the Underworld, PINS took to the stage like they owned the place and played a set that one of the highlights of the weekend. The new wave/ post punk influences seem obvious but their use of dynamics within the song can surprise you. Their live set builds on the strengths of their debut album and shows a lot of promise.

CC14 lacked an obvious headliner, although both ABC and Atari Teenage Riot could claim that honour on Friday. Koko was less than packed for the return of the new romantics but they were slicker than anything as they played a set full of hits. Martin Fry is still a commanding presence and it seems like the band have removed themselves from the retro circuit and are striving for credibility, and judging by the crowd response appearing on a bill like this has only served them well.

With 'The Look of Love' still hanging in the air I crossed the street to check out Dignan Porch's set at The Purple Turtle. What I saw was VU inspired indie-rock, but with enough quality to make them worth another listen.

Thought Forms in Belushi's were another absolute highlight. With no lights, no stage and a deep dark drone it was simultaneously lovely and alarming to hear music like this in this venue. Part of Bristol's Invada label, their set was brutal enough to have been antagonistic, but it actually worked superbly and sucked the audience in.

Grumbling Fur played a very intimate show at the Lock Tavern. This much lauded duo seemingly have quite a complicated set-up, with Dan O'Sullivan in charge of all the gadgets and Alexander Tucker playing mostly guitar and bass. 'Protogenesis' and 'The Ballad of Roy Batty' were highlights and the new songs sound strong - channelling the psychedelic side of British folk and coating it with vocals which recall Depeche Mode.

Saturday saw more synth pop with Au Revoir Simone at the Electric Ballroom, although their variety is more in tune with the Chromatics and the Drive soundtrack than anything retro.

Au Revoir Simone @ Camden Crawl 2014

Meanwhile on the outdoor stage at the sunny Camden Town Brewery Dirty Beaches were delivering a mix of dark beats, bass sax and atmospherics which didn't capture the attention of a lot of the early evening drinkers - although it was cool that their music could easily be heard in the streets around Kentish Town West station.

Jeffrey Lewis and the Jrams earlier outdoor set at the Camden Town Brewery featured covers of the Fall and Stereolab - in tribute to Laetitia Sadier who was appearing later - but the larger stage inside the Electric Ballroom allowed him to indulge his comic book side on the big screen behind him. The roots of the Vietnam War story song was particularly enlightening. This was a quirky and entertaining indie-folk-rock show with songs about his favourite British things (English breakfasts, basically) and the politically charged 'What Would Pussy Riot Do?'. Another major highlight.

Slaves at the Underworld were one of the biggest surprises,mainly because it was unexpected to see a couple of guys from Tonbridge Wells attack their instruments with a savagery worthy of the Dead Kennedys. A standing up drummer on lead vocals also gives them an edge. The most rowdy moshpit that I witnessed all weekend, by quite a stretch.

Crushed Beaks around the corner at The Black Heart are positively sedate by comparison, yet their hugely well received set of energetic indie-pop had a noisy, almost hardcore edge.

It was odd to see Laetitia Sadier of the much-loved Stereolab playing completely solo in the window of The Monarch, whilst half the room chatted and people gawped in from the bus stop outside. The quality of her songs prevailed though, and those showcased from the forthcoming album are just as impressive as her solo debut. Like her avid fan Jeffrey Lewis earlier in the day, she isn't afraid to bring politics right into the heart of her music.

Unfortunately there was a lamentable crowd for Shabazz Palaces at 10pm on a Saturday night in this huge venue- in contrast to the queues to get in to many of the smaller venues. This duo were one of the acts I was keenest to see and they didn't disappoint. This was an excellent set of progressive hip-hop, with percussion and lo-fi samplers to the fore, and by the end a bass sound to physically alter you.

Minutes away you could found nearly as many people crammed into Belushi's for Eighteen Nightmares At The Lux. This psych-rock,swamp rock bunch were tearing up Belushi's and the packed crowd were loving them, proof that the small sweaty venues were where the fun was.

Back in Koko Laurel Halo did her best with a similarly sparse crowd with a set of challenging glitchy beats and Mouse On Mars took full advantage of the large stage to blitz us with a visual onslaught to go with their splendid abstract techno.

It is the nature of such an event that clashes are inevitable, and people spoke highly of bands I got nowhere near - Girls Names, Novella and OF Montreal to name but three. In terms of atmosphere, there was a huge buzz around the small pubs which was great but it was also disappointing to see that energy deflected away from the larger venues. It made me yearn for the days when the festival had an obvious headliner and finale. However, in terms of variety and quality, not to mention the logistical challenge of running 25 venues more or less to schedule, we should be thankful that this is event is back on the festival calendar once more.

Girls Names @ Camden Crawl 2014