The almighty Tea Street Band close Getintothis’ Tom Konstantynowicz’s Sound City in colossal style after a final day that features a strong Liverpudlian showing.
As the new look Sound City draws to a close after four days of conference and music, the scale of the transformation dictates what we must analyse, but not until after we’ve sucked the last bits of goodness out of the bank holiday weekend.
There’s been an international feel to this year’s event, with more bands from further afield than ever before taking Liverpool by storm. However, it’s fitting that the final day feels more like the Sound City of old, a proper scouse love-in.
Entering the site to wind and grey skies, Liverpool’s Sankofa are already shredding over on the Atlantic Stage and as we’re set to leave at midnight, it’s to the ringing of a triumphant Tea Street Band set for a rammed Cargo tent.
On the Kraken Stage, Bathymetry are a fascinating little band. Their set switches between something bordering on psychedelic folk to bubblegum indie pop just like their vocal duties switch between their two front-women, one dressed all in black, one in pink.
Prose, on the Cargo Stage, exhibited the art of eloquent hip hop storytelling and are generally just a exceptionally tight band. With all the controversy over Kanye headlining Glastonbury, it’s safe to say hip hop has only enhanced Sound City this year.
Now, something organisers have always appeared keen to do is create a carnival-like atmosphere, even if you don’t go and watch any bands you can happily procrastinate sitting on the sidelines people watching. As it turns dark and some may be lagging after a couple of heavy days, a procession of drummers all with frightening expressions storm through the crowds. Sound City is a compelling place to be.
Back to the music, Liverpool fave Natalie McCool hit the North Stage up with her new sounds, more electronic than usual but sounding super fresh. At the Cargo Stage, Jennifer Davies, a relative newbie on the scene, blew everyone away with a big voice and energetic performance.
Today was also a day for indie bands, Yr Elra and The Mispers both showed plenty of promise on their respective stages. Perhaps the best of the bunch though were Raglans over on Cargo with their sing along hooks and folk-like undertones going down a treat.
All in all, it’s been a great festival, it was always going to have hiccups and teething problems, but just like in its birth year in 2008, it’s created a platform to become something special in future years. Some people will miss the city centre landscape, but sometimes it’s time to move on and grow.
Photos by Getintothis’ Martin Waters, Martin Saleh, Michael Hegarty, Jack Thompson, Tom Adam, Vicky Pea, Chris Flack: