Eye Emma Jedi, The Kabeedies, Crushing Blows, Ninetails: The Kazimier, Liverpool

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From devastating sonic bluster to progressive dance pop, Getintothis Hillary Briffa reports on Everislands’ latest showcase at the Kazimier.


A little less conversation,‘ smirks Ed Black of Ninetails – the Liverpool quartet who opened Everisland‘s free gig at the Kazimier and who thereby set the tone for a night of almost nonstop, curiously varied music.
From the get-go their furious strums send a volt through the newly-refurbished venue as the near-agitated bouncing of the recoiled band members mirrors the anticipation of the crowd.
Crooning vocals are belied by sharp, electric picking that rapidly gains momentum as the drums build up to a resounding crash.
From apparent musical chaos the group manage to let loose an infectious melody that somehow works amid their eclectic mix of styles.
The band’s jerky, animated stage presence marries their spasmodic complex time signatures, while Black twitches repeatedly to a mantra of ‘I can see‘ as the audience are all to complicit as they’re pulled along in the swell.
Ninetails are not a sudden tidal force: it’s the aching build up and coming together of the intricate melodies that steadily surround and turn listening into an almost transcendental, ethereal experience as guitar chords climb steadily amid a quavering vocal of ‘it’s infinite forever…’
Crushing Blows, are somewhat of a rarity, a drums and guitar duo, and Chris Jones and Hurricane Andrew don’t just dip their toes into this relatively untouched pool but dive in headfirst, without a life-jacket in a riot of aggressive riffs and shouted vocals.
Long-limbed guitarist Jones raises some eyebrows with his sporadic kicks and stumbles, eliciting excitement and amusement amid a jumping mass of bodies until the very last vibrations die out.
There’s a cacophony of sound yet the technical proficiency is irrefutable and quite an impressive sight. ‘Hurricane’ is an understatement as drumsticks disappear in a whirlwind tempest of clashing cymbals and pounding toms, as Andrew steals the spotlight with his rhythmic fury.
Adding to the variety of the night were Vampire Weekend-esque The Kabeedies who have just released second album, Come Out The Blue.
Billed as ‘afro-pop’, their music ranges from peppy, upbeat melodies to trilling indie beats. With distinctive male-female vocals, the teasing interplay between Katie‘s voice and those of guitarist Rory and bassist Evan produces a youthful, lively back-and-forth banter.
Hailing from Norwhich, they don’t hold back from poking fun at their hometown, and their songs boast amusing lyrics underscoring a grounded, solid performance of which the stand-out was the delightfully catchy single Santiago.
This song feels like summer: balmy atmosphere, warm rich tones and the delightful introduction of brass instruments. Before long the toe-tapping, feel-good music has the crowd bopping along with Katie as she dances nymph-like on tiptoes, chirping into the microphone.

Finally, the UK debut of headliners Eye Emma Jedi ended the night with a surprisingly funk-infused foray into progressive indie-rock.
It is little wonder their music at times ghosts that of Dire Wolfe since the band boasts Joe Wills and Dan Croll, two former members.
In spite of this, the group have come up with their own style, and the result is an edgy, tight sound soaring through the venue on Alexander Pavelich‘s clear, rolling vocals.
The five form an interesting spectacle with their mismatched medley look: the tattooed drummer, Andreas, could easily have stepped out of a punk band while Dan, the bespectacled bassist, has an indie appeal, and the guitarist is an impressive, lanky figure head-banging his curly afro.
All five play their instruments like there’s no tomorrow – Pavelich ripping his strings in the process – and the variety in the songs is refreshing since tunes stand out rather than run together.
Brother, in particular, lingers in the memory, with its unique dance twist as energy levels soar through the roof and as they sound their last notes, the euphoria in the Kazimier was almost tangible. Props to Everisland who’s efforts were priceless.

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