Finding the perfect balance of noise chaos and a chilled festival vibe, Getintothis’ Tom Konstantynowicz reports on the first day of Sound City at its new Bramley Moore home.
So, the time to speculate about how Liverpool Sound City’s new abandoned dockland site will look, and when the first drunken scally would fall into the Mersey is over.
We finally got to check out the new look Bramley Dock on the first proper day of music.
Dreams of picturesque waterside backdrops had been planted in everyone’s mind since the plans were announced and amongst the portaloos, food joints and marquees there are some vantage points that really justify the ambitious location change.
The tall ship Kaskelot sat alongside the bright lights of the funfair is a sight to behold, as is the old clock tower in the background of the main Atlantic Stage.
With such a big venture however, must come a few teething problems. The first act on the Kraken stage, Sound Poets, faced issues with sound bleeding from the nearby North Stage. They were delayed half an hour until they could hear their own instruments such was the noise vibrating through from Hollysiz giving it plenty of beans across the way.
While the proximity problems with certain stages rumbled on, a hop back onto the runway by the entrance gates to the Cargo Stage made for a much more chilled vibe.
Thabo & The Real Deal are hitting up one of the biggest crowds of the day so far with some funk and soul. “If Bill Withers and Julian Assange wrote songs together, what would it sound like?” Thabo asks. Just like this, apparently.
Cargo is the festivals home of black music for Friday, Kof, one of Liverpool’s hip hop pioneers brings a reggae vibe backed by a full band. Later on, Loyle Carner came from London and made Liverpool sound like LA, rapping over some strictly West Coast style beats.
The move to an enclosed site has, inevitably, made it feel more festival-y. All the people in one place draws attention to the seminal carnival dancers, stag parties, fancy dressers and roadies lugging gear back and forth.
Some folk are walking round clutching vinyl records wishing they’d brought a bag.
These are purchased from the easily missed Mail Chimp Record Store, half record shop, half venue. Amongst the vinyl browsers a band from Austria are playing, they’re all really tiny and dressed like English country gents in smoking jackets and patterned silk scarves.
As most of the crowds are drawn to either Swans or Vaccines in the latter stages of the day, Taffy are rocking up the North Stage still and the Tea Street Band are gearing up for a DJ set under the decks of the Kaskelot ahead of closing the Cargo Stage on Sunday night.
A whopping, eventful opening day.
Photos by Getintothis’ Martin Waters, Martin Saleh, Chris Flack, Vicky Pea, Tom Adam, Michael Hegarty, Jack Thompson: