10 Liverpool Acts You Have To See at LIMF
Basement Jaxx, Sigma, Ella Eyre, Jess Glynne, Liverpool International Music Festival always draws international talent from all over the globe. But forget about them for now. The It’s Liverpool stage is where it’s at and this year we’ve scored some amazing talent.
Yeah, we know, it’s our stage, so we would say that, but bear with us. Diverse, authentic and full of that special ‘Scouse’ sound, Liverpool music is the best. Not convinced? Have a read (and a listen) to this.
The It’s Liverpool stage is killing it this year and we think you’ll agree, it’s our best line-up yet.
JOHN POWER BAND
Saturday 23 July, 19.20 – 20.00
Genre: Acoustic-folk, singer-songwriter
Ex-bassist with The La’s and former singer/guitarist with Cast, John Power released his first solo album, ‘Happening For Love’ in 2003, after Cast had split the previous year. The Liverpudlian rejoined The La’s during their reformation in 2005, returning to his original position as bassist. He is now continuing his solo career, which takes his music down a folksy path, but maintains Power’s passionate and urgent voice.
Fact: John Power was closely involved in the Hillsborough Justice Campaign, singing the lead vocal on the 2009 recording of “The Fields of Anfield Road’ commemorating the 20th anniversary of the Hillsborough disaster.
Definitive track: Happening for Love (2003)
Saturday 23 July, 18.10 – 19.00
Genre: Electro Funk
Greg Wilson is no ordinary DJ. He was the first DJ to mix live on British TV, taught Fatboy Slim how to scratch and was named amongst DJ magazine as one of the top 20 remixers of all time.
But wait, we’re not done. The man was instrumental in breaking the new electronic, post-disco records coming out of New York, a sound he himself dubbed ‘Electro Funk’. His BBC Radio 1 Essential Mix also became an instant classic, receiving universal acclaim and was selected as one of the ’10 ultimate classics’ that spanned the radio show’s show’s 17 year career.
Fact: Greg has produced a series of documentary podcasts, Time Capsule, Random Influences and Early 80’s Floorfillers, as well as the long-running blog series, Living To Music.
Saturday 23 July 2016, 16.30 – 17.00
Genre: The band merge country, electronica, post-punk and post-rock.
Stealing Sheep are a three piece group consisting of Rebecca Hawley (vocals, keyboards), Emily Lansley (vocals, guitar) and Lucy Mercer (vocals, drums)
Electronic, indie and alternative, Stealing Sheep shine at music events like LIMF. The band have released three EPs to date. What If the Lights Went Out in 2010, and The Mountain Dogs and I Am the Rain both in 2011. Their debut studio album Into the Diamond Sun was released in 2012 by Heavenly Recordings, to very favourable reviews.
Fact: The band’s influences include Dirty Projectors, Haunted Graffiti by Ariel Pink, Alt-J, Santigold, Paul Simon and Can.
Definitive track: Shut Eye (2012)
Saturday 23 July, 15.30, 16.00
Genre: Synth Pop/Rock
Spearheading a wave of new Liverpool acts in the 1980s, China Crisis are currently supporting their new album ‘Autumn in the Neighbourhood’, their first full record of new material in 20 years.
Eddie Lundon and Gary Daly are the founder members of the band which started in Kirkby, back in 1979. Known for their string of hit singles, including African & White, Christian, Working with Fire and Steel, Black Man Ray and Wishful Thinking, the band will be performing these classics and more, alongside tracks from the new album.
Fact: These post-punk rockers return to Liverpool from sell-out US stadium tours, followed by another series of sell-out performances at our very own Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Hall.
Definitive Track: Wishful Thinking (1983)
TRUDY AND THE ROMANCE
Saturday 23 July, 14.50 – 15.10
These guys are all about love, particularly the darker side, including unrequited first crushes, and drunken proclamations of lust. Their songs manage to combine the giddy loved-up joy with broken despair filled hearts all in one go, so, we’re guessing you can relate.
Fact: Formerly known as simply ‘Trudy’ the band had to change their name to Trudy and the Romance, due to boring legal stuff. But we think their new name is more fitting.
Definitive Track: Behave (2015)
MICHAEL HEAD AND THE RED ELASTIC BAND
Sunday 24 July, 18.20 – 19.00
About: Michael Head is most famous as the lead singer and songwriter for Shack and The Pale Fountains, but he’s also been described as ‘the’ bard of Liverpool (and there are a few) with his music praised as ‘gut-wrenchingly beautiful’ by The Guardian.
You can expect an amazing atmosphere for this set, as Michael Head and The Red Elastic Band attract a large, loyal fan base that multiplies with every release, live show and video-view. Gigs are also sold-out within hours – a further testimony to his authenticity.
Fact: Music bible NME described Michael Head as “a lost genius and among the most gifted British songwriters of his generation”, so definitely worth a listen.
DAVE MCCABE & THE RAMIFICATIONS
Sunday 24 July 2016, 16.10 – 16.50
Genre: Sci-Fi pop and Rock ‘n’ Roll
You loved The Zutons, we loved the Zutons, but times change and so does music and Zutons front man, Dave McCabe’s new outfit is light-years away from his 2001 indie-rock days.
This band is all about 80’s electro music, inspired by Kraftwerk, Depeche Mode and Grand Theft Auto. Their debut album ‘The Church of Miami’ has received widespread praise and they’ve been fine tuning their style on tour to great reviews, performing their new music, along with a mix of the old tunes as well.
Fact: The band still like to keep it local, recoding ‘Church of Miami’ at Ape Studios on the Wirral
Definitive track: Too Damn Good (2015)
CLEAN CUT KID
Sunday 24 July, 15.10 – 15.40
Genre: Soulful Mersey Pop
This Liverpool four-piece are a band on the rise, thanks to some seriously hard graft this year, playing 13 festivals (out of a possible 29) and this is only the beginning.
Signed from nowhere, after only their second gig, Clean Cut Kid have impressed many music bloggers with their strong performances at numerous UK music festivals, including Glastonbury.
Fact: Band member’s Mike and Evelyn Halls, Saul Godman and Ross Higginson believe in putting the time in to get things right, attributing their success to extensive day and night rehearsals, Godman even made their practice space home for a while.
Definitive track: Vitamin C (2015)
Genre: Moving folk pop rock
Sunday 24 July, 14.20-14.50
The talented and lovely Natalie McCool is easy to like. The Liverpool singer-songwriter shone at last year’s LIMF, supporting her contemporaries to help recognise the contribution that women have made to Liverpool music.
Natalie is lauded by every single music luminary that crosses her path- including recent acclaim from BBC 6 Music’s Chris Hawkins & BBC Radio 2′s Janice Long, Guardian and ‘Louder Than War’ journalist John Robb, and Liverpool’s own arts, music and film magazine The Double Negative.
Fact: Natalie became first recognised when she won a Yamaha-sponsored national song writing competition judged by Coldplay frontman Chris Martin. While at university, she received a one-to-one song writing session from none other than Sir Paul McCartney.
Definitive track: Pins (2015)
THE VRYLL SOCIETY
Sunday 24 July, 13.40 – 14.00
Genre: Progressive Liverpool Rock
We love the The Vryll Society. They’ve produced a creative and complex body of work with a surprising cinematic sheen, to stimulate both the soul and mind. Signed to rejuvenated imprint Deltasonic, the band’s new cut ‘La Jetee’ is a ludicrously addictive piece of psych-addled guitar pop.
Fact: The name The Vryll Society derives from an 1871 book by Edward Bulwer-Lytton, an account of a subterranean master race and an energy force called Vril.
Definitive track: La Jetee (2016)
LIMF is international and its reach and status is growing every year. But it’s the festival’s strong Liverpool sound that gives LIMF its unique edge and distinctive voice. So make sure you head to the It’s Liverpool stage at this year’s event, it puts the ‘Liverpool’ into LIMF and effortlessly reaffirms that Liverpool is a true city of music.