Liverpool Music 2015: Highs, lows and best of the rest

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Richard Hawley

As we close 2015, Getintothis’ Adam Lowerson, Shaun Ponsonby and Paul Riley collate a comprehensive selection of the highs, lows and best of the rest from an action packed year.

Is it that time again? It feels like about five minutes since we were last writing one of these things. But as the saying goes, time flies when you’re covering a thousand gigs a week.

Alright, that be a slight exaggeration, but if you’re a regular reader you might have noticed how big a year it has been for music in Liverpool and for Getintothis. We’ve covered more than ever and been spoilt with some of the bands that have come to town this year, as well as getting to see the emergence and rise of some of our favourite Merseyside bands too.

To see Hooton Tennis Club grow from their early demos and Shipping Forecast support slots to touring the world, headlining the Kazimier and releasing one of the best records of the year on Heavenly Records has been a real fairy tale story and one that we’ve loved following every step of the way. All We Are, Stealing Sheep and Outfit all released great albums too, cementing their statuses as major players on the scene, and we’ve also enjoyed discovering some rising stars, with the likes of Louis Berry, Holy Thursday and the Night Café announcing themselves as serious ones to watch.

It’s been a great year for Liverpool music as a whole, with accolades and awards coming from prestigious places all over the world. Our festivals cleaned up at the UK Festival Awards, with the likes of Sound City, LIMF and Creamfields taking home the gongs, and more recently Liverpool’s reputation as the capital of pop was boosted by receiving official City of Music status from UNESCO. We’ve all know it’s boss here for a while now, so it’s good to see the rest of the world waking up to it.

Looking back it has been a seriously good year for music on Merseyside, and we’re made up to have been there to see it all happen. So join us in reflection with our highs, lows and best of the rest and relive some great shows with our reviews and picture galleries. We’re looking forward to winding down over Christmas now, ready for it all to kick off in the new year, when sadly we’ll be losing our spiritual home in the Kazimier. There’s not a lot you can say about the Kazimier that hasn’t already been said, it is a true Liverpool institution and will be remembered in the same way as the likes of the Cavern and Eric’s. We’ve had some of the best nights of our life there, met some of our best friends, and we will definitely give it the send off it deserves. Here’s to another great year.

End of Year Selections
It’s that time of the year again! Lists, lists and more lists! We have come at it from all angles, and collected the opinions of our contributors and Liverpool’s finest music heads, industry professionals and musicians.
All Talk
We’re continually outdoing ourselves on the old interviews. From local legends like The Coral and Ian McNabb, the new school of great songwriters like Courtney Barnett, comedy legend Stewart Lee or even the most successful songwriter-producer of all time in Motown legend Lamont Dozier.
Gilles Peterson at St Luke's Church

Gilles Peterson at St Luke’s Church

Top Ten
If there’s one thing likely to promote disunity in the GIT camp, it’s a list. Around a dozen of our contributors provided a Top Ten list on any given subject. Only eight survived.
Ryan Adams at Mountford Hall in March

Ryan Adams at Mountford Hall

Live Reviews
Live music is our bread and butter, and this year our writers and photographers have covered more gigs and events than ever before. From the new, small acts from Liverpool to the major, worldwide names that have visited the city, we’ve seen it all. GIT has spread its wings in 2015, with a number of reviews from Europe and the rest of the UK. Check this out. It’s some list:
A frenzy at The Kazimier with Drenge

A frenzy at The Kazimier with Drenge

Picture Galleries
A picture can tell you something mere words never could, and this year our snappers have captured the action with some stunning photographs to accompany our writing.
Gordon Masiala of MKA Musica at Africa Oyé

Gordon Masiala of MKA Musica at Africa Oyé

GIT Award
It’s been another big year for the GIT Award, with All We Are winning in 2015. The night itself at the Kazimier was a sight to behold. Bring on 2016.
The specially commissioned GIT AWARD 2015 trophy.

The specially commissioned GIT AWARD 2015 trophy.

Introducing
As the Liverpool music machine continues to produce exciting new bands, Getintothis remains at the cutting edge. You heard them here first!
John Joseph Brill at Liverpool Music Week

John Joseph Brill at Liverpool Music Week

 On It
Like most years, things happened in 2015. We predict many more things happening in 2016. Some of the things announced in 2015 are even scheduled to take place in 2016. Check out the following things:
Anathema at the Anglican Cathedral

Anathema at the Anglican Cathedral

Manchester Gigs of the Month

It’s not all about Liverpool, you know. We took the liberty of letting you know what’s going on over the otherside of the M62. Have iPod, will travel.

Sufjan Stevens at the Manchester Apollo

Sufjan Stevens at the Manchester Apollo

Pop Life

We love a good battle of words here at GIT, and this year we’ve covered everything from the widespread influence of ’60s girl groups, to look backs at classic albums, pop culture phenomenons and those little singular moments that define us for better or for worse.

The Vryll Society at Leaf

The Vryll Society at Leaf

Lost Liverpool Column

Getintothis’ Paul Fitzgerald started looking back at those forgotten Liverpool memories this year. Check out his recollections, from the infamous Beastie Boys riot, to the Liverpool 1990 Festival in France.

Mixtape

The Getintothis mixtape ensures that finest new sounds reach your ears every single month. Take a listen back to a year musical gems.

Natalie McCool at The Magnet

Natalie McCool at The Magnet

Cosmic Slop 

We decided Getintothis’ Shaun Ponsonby would tackle the big questions this year with his poor attempt at wit. He managed to cover everything from the realities of the Sex Pistols credit cards, to Taylor Swift‘s sudden rise to power, Whitney Houston‘s hologram and Kanye. Lots and lots of Kanye.

Footsteps on the Decks 

Fully immersing ourselves in the dance scene, Getintothis’ Martin Hewitt kept us in the loop with everything from the festival season, Chibuku, Waxxx and beyond.

Gregor Tresher

Gregor Tresher

Dysgeusia 

Continuing our adventures into darkness, Getintothis’ Mark Greenwood and Laura Coppin dissected the current goings on in metal.

In The Pit 

Celebrating the work of the photographer, Getintothis’ Martin Waters talks to some of the finest gig snappers around. Get under the skin of a whole art form.

We Came Out Like Tigers at The Kazimier - Picture by Marty Saleh

We Came Out Like Tigers at The Kazimier – Picture by Marty Saleh

Labels of Love

We’ve taken a closer look at some of the labels behind our favourite music.

Liverpool Music Week
Liverpool Music Week returned for its 11th edition bringing some of the biggest and most talked about shows of the year. From Deerhunter to Godspeed You! Black Emperor, it was a week people won’t be forgetting any time soon.
Godspeed You! Black Emperor at Liverpool Music Week

Godspeed You! Black Emperor at Liverpool Music Week

LIMF

The Liverpool International Music Festival continues to grow and prosper with each passing year. Our coverage of the 2015 was incredibly in-depth, catching performances from the likes of Basement Jaxx, Echo & The Bunnymen, Talib Kweli and so many more.

Echo and the Bunnymen in Sefton Park

Echo and the Bunnymen in Sefton Park

Singles Club

Sound City
Sound City went massive this year at the Bramley-Moore Dock, and it’s only going to grow in stature and focus. The Coral have already been announced for 2016, but check out our report on The Flaming Lips, The Vaccines, Belle & Sebastian and everybody in between.
The Flaming Lips at Sound City

The Flaming Lips at Sound City

On Track
Along with keeping tabs on all things new coming out of Liverpool we’ve continued to follow some of our favourites and more familiar names in the city.
The Floormen

The Floormen at FestEVOL

Unknown Pleasures
Unknown Pleasures celebrated it’s second year of running, courtesy of Getintothis’ Patrick Clarke and his weird and wonderful obscurities. It never fails to introduce you to something fresh, new and exciting.
Reel Music
Music and films go together hand in hand, and this year we’ve discussed some of the best soundtracks, film music and films about music, or just some bat shit crazy movie you had to see to believe.

Pictures by Getintothis‘ contributors.

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