Jo Mary, The Probes & Eyesore & The Jinx: Studio 2, Liverpool

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Jo Mary, Photo Credit: Keith Ainsworth

Jo Mary, Photo Credit: Keith Ainsworth

A free gig for a great cause was on the cards on Friday night as Studio 2 welcomed three Liverpool bands flying the flag for the alternative rock & roll scene, Getintothis’ Matthew Wood was there to witness.

Segueing out of the recently opened Crazy Pedro’s with bellies full of mad pizza toppings and bargain booze, we arrived just in time for Eyesore & the Jinx, who open Studio 2’s free gig in aid of Liverpool’s local food banks.

Initially we’re joined by few others as they launch into their opening tune; punchy and angular, the alt-rock trio are evidently coming into their own more and more with every live performance.

Fortunately the room fills up gradually and this helps them settle into their set, their wonky stage presence enhancing their jarring, eclectic set. They delve into elements of country and folk, art rock and post-punk and switch between slow hazy jams and rapid fire, distorted outbursts with strict regiment.

Standout tracks include On An Island and the sun-kissed journey that is Gated Community; jangling freely and frequently roaring like a steam train with a tremendous energy.

All involved are well warmed up at this point and Eyesore win themselves another handful of admirers.

Ride, Ulrika Spacek: O2 Academy, Liverpool 

Following their set was quartet, The Probes, who encounter a screechy start but once they find their groove you begin to see why they’d found themselves in support of huge acts like Echo & The Bunnymen.

Their songwriting is more conventional than their support and they blast out Brian Jonestown Massacre-esque stoned jams throughout with a powerful lead baritone vocal that recalls Elbow and White Lies. 

Their bass player steals the show, weaving intricate lines between the effect-drenched guitars in slick, Jared Followill fashion.

A bus load of vibrantly clad hipsters join the crowd in time for misfit quintet, Jo Mary as they bubble onto stage. They’ve been dubbed as Liverpool’s answer to Fat White Family, which is understandable, they boast a unique stage presence and a powerful sound.

Their set is an onslaught of manic rock & roll and devilish psych with onstage antics to boot. Each band member channels different roots on influence, and at times they merge brilliantly with sharp rhythmic interchanges and blends of distinct genres.

At others, however, it’s a bit of a mess. Their mismatch sound becomes uncertain and they seem to lose grip on their audience as they ramble through the final section of their set. Shirts are removed, drugs are in demand and their set wavers slightly.

Albeit a shaky finale, given the right attention their tunes can really shine. They’re a riotous live act with tonnes of talent, lets just see if they can nurture this into something much more.

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