Highfields, Wonderlust, Natalie McCool: Shipping Forecast, Liverpool

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Highfields head up yet another new club night in Liverpool, yet Getintothis Tom Dani finds more reasons to celebrate Liverpool’s new pop scene.


Another night, another new club night in Liverpool. Yet, there’s more good goods on offer.
And tonight’s pop-straddling line up sees sets from the dark and hypnotizing singer songwriter Natalie McCool, feel good indie wonder makers Wonderlust and Liverpool’s most recent multi-national fixation Highfields.
Natalie McCool kicks things off, taking to the stage with nothing but an electric guitar and a microphone. Her flawless and haunting vocals mesmerize the small gathering that has turned up early for her set, with a sound reminiscent of early Jezebels and the vocal style that brought Florence Welch to the masses.
Ending with a track from her forthcoming debut album (that features the guitar work of a certain Bernard Butler), we’re given the impression that this is a name we’ll be hearing a lot more of throughout 2013.

The room begins to fill as Wonderlust jump into their set of quirky, folk-tinged pop and the band show great potential with a key highlight being the joint vocal duties of Graeme Mckee and Rosa Murdoch.
This is a band that clearly enjoys playing together and as a result you’re instantly charmed.
The band’s closing track takes you back to the carefree days of The Holloways and Larrikin Love, with chirpy hooks and a classic indie pop rhythm. By no means is this a band that wants to make you think, they simply want you to dance and enjoy yourselves and tonight they did just that.

There’s a real buzz around Highfields; originating from all across the globe they have really made themselves at home in Liverpool and the Merseyside scene, with tonight’s turn out reflecting that.
The band present a sound, falling somewhere between the likes of Modest Mouse and Beirut (if you gave them some good angst to sing about).
They’re met with an excitable crowd who sing and dance along to the majority the set as new material showcases a band that is maturing in sound.
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Highfields: fun and very, very good – live at the Shipping Forecast
What’s most evident, is that Highfields balance professionalism and a tightly honed musicianship while retaining the charm of a band of friends simply having fun.
Fan favourite Waste Of Space closes the night, as each person in the room sings a long to the chorus, reinforcing the idea that here is a band who’ve stamped their substantial presence on Liverpool and it’s still growing.
Tonight Highfields showed the potential to not only be the quirky pop heroes of Liverpool new music, but a band that could soon be thrust onto the national radar.

Pictures by Nicola Leigh.

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