Getintothis‘ final words on 2010. Finally.
It’s been slow going over at Getintothis HQ during the early part of the year; constant technical glitches down Canary Wharf meant the loss of about three weeks music jibber jabber, day-job dabbling with Dalglish and Merseyside derbies, not to mention the distraction of a well earned festive break, have resulted in a slight hiccup in rounding off the last 12 months. But better late than never, right?
In many respects last year was very much a repeat of 2009, by that, Liverpool continued its upward steady curve of artistic endeavour. A GOOD THING.
The festivals – Liverpool Sound City, Liverpool Music Week, Creamfields and Africa Oye battled with increasingly difficult financial climates to pull off overwhelmingly positive reviews.
The Biennial team and Wolstenholme’s Creative Space organisers blended art and sound projects expertly adding a much-needed spice to late summer and early autumn, filling vast empty spaces with pieces that made you think, laugh and interact.
All the while, the music-makers, venue owners and promoters strengthened their footing despite claims there was little of note happening within the city to make outsiders sit up.
But one thing’s certain, by the close of 2010 Liverpool seemed to have reached somewhat of a plateau.
There was a certain air of contentment about the independent scene. And it’ll be intriguing to note who can mix creative talent with true ambition over the course of 2011 and really stamp their mark on the cultural map.
There’s certainly room.
But back to last year…
Gigs of the Year:
Alright, I’m biased. But when Getintothis was approached out of the blue on a non-descript Autumn afternoon by Liverpool Music Week‘s top bro, Mike Deane, to help curate several of the gigs for this year’s event I was understandably chuffed.
Even more so when Liars was thrown into the mix. Having met with Bido Lito! editor Craig Pennington, we devised a night which was intended to be as varied as it was reflective of the diversity and sonic excellence transcending the current Liverpool landscape.
What unfolded at Static Gallery was nothing short of staggering; visceral, nerve-shreddingly tense, funky (thanks Forest Swords) and downright fun. The signed collector’s vinyl of Sisterworld was the icing on the cake while buying Liars‘ drum sticks pre-gig was another surreal highlight.
1. Liars, Mugstar, Forest Swords, We Came Out Like Tigers, Loved Ones, Beast: Static Gallery, Liverpool (Getintothis review)
2. Foals: The Kazimier, Liverpool (Getintothis review and video)
3. The National: Academy, Brixton (CMU‘s editor, Andy Malt on The National at Brixton).
4. Yeasayer: Academy 3, Manchester (Getintothis review)
5. the xx: The Kazimier, Liverpool (Getintothis review)
6. Oceansize: O2 Academy, Liverpool (Getintothis review)
7. LCD Soundsystem: Academy, Manchester. (Getintothis review)
8. Janelle Monae: Academy, Manchester (Getintothis review) (Getintothis picture gallery)
9. These New Puritans: O2 Academy, Liverpool (Getintothis review)
10. Crystal Castles, HEALTH: O2 Academy, Liverpool (Getintothis review)
Event of 2010:
Kop out time… It’s a tie.
Apologies, but these two are truly of equal merit and deserve whopping pats on the backs to all concerned.
The first, Deconstruct: The Great Kazimier Carnival took place on June 19 and will forever be remembered as the final page in the Kazimier‘s remarkable first chapter.
A pageant rich in colour, imagination and spectacular happenings (where else can you find a carriage made from a wheelchair whirling Elizabethan ladies around a courtyard as Grease-style breakdancers body-pop on an outdoor chessboard?), the organisers expertly managed to tie together all the wonderful parties that unfolded behind that non-descript black wooden door in Wolstenholme Square.
Next up – the Kazimier Records Launch Party on February 4.
The second, and in distinct contrast, was Bido Lito‘s Inside Pages. A two-day festival on October 1-2 at Static Gallery for the official launch of the pink-paged music magazine the city has been crying out for, showcasing the multifaceted tapestry of sound within Liverpool.
But what was most celebratory was the melding of nearly all of Liverpool’s creative heads under one green-wood panelled roof over a glorious weekend all in the name of rock and roll – a first during Getintothis‘ four years.
Hopefully this is just the start of many ventures editor Craig Pennington, and his able deputy Christopher Torpey get involved in.
Getintothis chats with Bido Lito! editor Craig Pennington
Biggest bummer of 2010: The MOBO Awards
From the D-list red carpet munchers, to the lacklustre awards show culminating in a royal rumble at the Hilton, the City Council paid for event will be remembered for all the wrong reasons.
Getintothis coverage of The MOBO Awards.
Hero of the Year:
It would be easy to pick a number of Liverpool musicians or bands this year, as there’s been so many that have stepped up to the plate; We Came Out Like Tigers, Sun Drums and Mugstar have been the pick of the bands while a special mention has to go to Matt Barnes of Forest Swords for picking up FACT magazine’s album of the year with Pitchfork, Vice and numerous others slotting the Dagger Paths EP into their end of year lists – what with rumours of remixes with alt US big guns plus dabblings with orchestras, 2011 promises to be an exciting time for the young Wirral enigma.
But, Getintothis likes to champion those whose efforts often go unrecognised away from the stage and the one person that’s reimagined the music better than any other, was artistic uber-dude and all-round gent Gary McGarvey.
An almost constant presence on the gig circuit, Gary’s work has documented nearly every gig worth mentioning in 2010, having designed the accompanying posters and flyer artwork.
He went on to achieve greater prominence in May with his own exhibition in the old Rapid Hardware shop during Liverpool Sound City – an event which saw musicians, artists and the casual fan pack out the white-washed bendy building for a couple of beautiful days during the summer.
It’s one thing having talent, but another to have commitment, dedication and unswerving passion for your subject, and Gary has this in abundance.
Take a quick look at his music selections from 2010 and you’re given a brief intro into his hunger for music. Take a look at his artwork and you see he understands the subject and is sensitive to the musician’s tastes and the way their music makes the listener feel. Spend a moment in his company and you’ll be bowled over by his spirit while no doubt picking up a new thread of music to chase up.
A true talent, and Getintothis‘ Hero of 2010.
Getintothis chats to Gary prior to Liverpool Sound City 2010.
Label of 2010:
Toughie this one.
Regular Getintothis faves 4AD (The National, Twin Shadow, Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti), Transgressive (Foals, Tame Impala) City Slang (Caribou, Broken Social Scene, Menomena) and Mute (Yeasayer, Liars, Grinderman) continued to do the business.
But I’m plumping for Norway’s Smalltown Supersound for consistently whopping space-disco treats from the likes of Lindstrom & Christabelle, K-X-P, Bjorn Torske, Arp and Drivan.
Any label that has you working up a sweat in early February and barely lets up straight into December is deserved of credit.
But any label that releases a 12″ called Moon Jocks and Prog Rocks with the accompanying press release quote – ‘A dude of southern Norwegian origin once said this: “Anyone can make a piece of art, but disco is for gods”.‘ – wins Getintothis‘ heart every time.
Festivals of 2010:
1. Latitude: Southwold, Suffolk (Getintothis reviews part 1, part 2, part 3).
2. Liverpool Sound City (read Getintothis‘ extensive coverage here).
3. All Tomorrow’s Parties curated by Pavement.
Albums of 2010:
1. Kanye West: My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy (Getintothis review)
2. Fang Island: Fang Island
3. The National: High Violet
4. Yeasayer: Odd Blood
5. Robyn: Body Talk Part 1/2
Getintothis‘ top 50 albums of 2010.
Worst Records of 2010:
1. RPA And The United Nations Of Sound: The United Nations Of Sound
2. Manic Street Preachers: Postcards From A Young Man (review)
3. Joint third: Nadine Coyle: Insatiable / Delphic: Acolyte (Getintothis review)
Venues of 2010:
1. The Kazimier, Liverpool
2. Static Gallery, Liverpool
3. The Shipping Forecast, Liverpool
Films of 2010:
The film industry really is the pits. I spent about an hour thinking of these five and they could probably be in any order as my indifference reaches new levels of low when it comes to the flicks.
All entertaining, none close to celluloid classics.
1. Kick Ass
3. Trash Humpers
4. Four Lions
5. A Prophet
Tracks of 2010:
1. Janelle Monae feat Big Boi: Tightrope
2. Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti: Round And Round
3. Avi Buffalo: Remember Last Time
4. Yeasayer: O.N.E.
5. Fang Island: Sideswiper
Full list of Getintothis Tracks of 2010
Downs of 2010:
1. The year began on a huge downer with the news Jay Reatard had died. He was just 29. P4K’s just done a lovely tribute one year on. Also passing away during 2010 were The Slits‘ Ari Up, Big Star‘s Alex Chilton, Mark Linkous (aka Sparklehorse), Malcolm McLaren and Liverpool’s adopted band leader Captain Beefheart.
2. The Libertines reform. Thankfully few seemed to care. Except a girl named Polly who private messaged me on Facebook in response to this article, threatening to stab me in the eye.
3. Not only did I manage to miss one of my favourite new bands Wax Fang at All Tomorrow’s Parties, I also managed to miss them performing one of my all-time favourite albums by my all-time favourite artist: Purple Rain by Prince. Bummer.
4. Korova’s fire.
5. The new James Morrison, Matt Cardle wins X Factor. Cheryl Cole completely loses it and the only half-decent pop hope on there, Cher Lloyd, loses out. Hardly surprising Jay-Z‘s snapped her up.
6. The Shipping Forecast‘s Hold. Never has a gigging venue been so consistently useless at allowing people to hear or see the action.
7. MGMT, MIA and Vampire Weekend fail to reproduce the goods.
8. Rihanna standing me up for dinner at Piccolinos. TWICE.
9. December’s death of two stereos. Bad times.
10. RE-WRITING AN ENTIRE MONTH’S WORTH OF GETINTOTHIS AS OUR WORK COMPUTER SYSTEMS FAILED… No biggie.
Ups of 2010:
1. Getintothis chats to Yeasayer.
2. Never Records.
3. Kanye West reinvents the album, hip-hop production and joins the world of Twitter like only he knows how. http://twitter.com/kanyewest
4. Leaf Bold Street. A much-needed injection on the scene melding relaxed coffee shop by day with the potential of sonic boom upstairs as witnessed on their opening night in December. 2011 could be their year.
5. Daisy Lowe does Maximum Balloon in the sexiest promo of the year:
6. The Shipping Forecast‘s bar. With additional bonus points for hosting the monthly Happy Endings as Ellis and Heather cater for all those with dodgy bangs and denim cut-offs.
7. Fever Ray on how to do an awards acceptance speech:
8. Warren Ellis‘ hugs.
9. Diplo‘s Florida jewish geisha, Twitter user @deadfromtheneck, records a special message for Getintothis, inspired by Willow Smith‘s Whip Your Hair with added Prince.
10. Pigeons: the lowest of the low – the flying rats of the sky – deliver their verdict on the Kings of Leon by shitting on them forcing them to leave the stage. KoL respond by unveiling themselves as The Martin Luther Kings of Leon amabassadors for Water Aid and Comic Relief.
Right, that’s about it…
Finally special thanks to all those that have continued to support and contribute to Getintothis throughought the last 12 months: promoters Revo, Darren, Ellis, James & Tom; the PRs & label heads so helpful with requests; snappers Mark, Sakura, Mina, Matt, Conor, Anthony and a whole host of others; bar/venue managers Sam, Paula, Venya, Sam and all the folk at The Kazimier; Gill at Cream; Dave, Rebekah, Becky and all at Sound City; big thanks to Music Week‘s Mike Deane for requesting the co-curator spots (roll on next year), Natalie & Becky at Leaf, all the dedicated contributors and anyone else that have made 2010 a blast.
There will be an all-new Getintothis launching soon. Keep those ears John Peeled.
Thanks for reading.
And belated Happy New Year.
Getintothis Best of the Rest 2009.
Getintothis Best of the Rest 2008.
Getintothis Best of the Rest 2007
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