Liverpool Sound City 2014: The Kooks, The Tea Street Band, 35 Summers, Breakfast Monkey, Phox, Ajimal, Alberto Montero: Duke Street Garage, East Village Arts Club, Leaf Cafe


A manic finale to Liverpool Sound City sees Getintothis’ Joel Richards scrambling to see the big guns.

With energy levels running dangerously low, it would take some effort to get through the last wave of acts at Sound City.
Starting off in EVAC, Ajimal got things underway (albeit 30 minutes late, being told by the sound man “you’ve just gotta go NOW“), and from there it never really progressed. Their music failed to make any sense, with many a slow build up and their set up hardly impressed the small audience that stood around looking bored.
Beating a hasty retreat to Heebies Basement we found a load of people sitting down and taking in the sounds of Alberto Montero. The Spaniard delicately strummed away on his guitar, enticing what was an already intimate audience to hang off every lyric.
Next up was a return to the EVAC loft where we had better luck this time in the form of Phox. The chilled out theme continued with the lead singer’s melodies supported by a backing band of bass and acoustic guitars that evoked a pleasant feeling inside.
Therefore it was with a heavy heart that we had to move on to Sound Food & Drink where we caught Breakfast Monkey. Complete with beany hats, the rock group soon attracted a crowd out of nowhere and their heavy rock woke us up out of our laid back slumber approach brought on by previous artists.
Although not normally fond of this type of music, they were enjoyable enough but we wouldn’t be in any rush to see them again.
However one band we were in a rush to see was the eagerly awaited return of 35 Summers at Leaf. Having not played together for over 20 years, Sound City boss Dave Pichilingi and co showed no signs of rustiness with their late 80’s groove going down a treat.
Despite admitting in these pages that he didn’t like The Beatles growing up, Pichilingi had no qualms in belting out his band’s cover of Come Together.
35 summers live leaf
35 Summers performing live at Leaf Cafe
Unfortunately the remainder of the night descended into farce as we were herded like cattle through the barrier at the top of Parr Street then forced to queue up in Wolstenholme Square in what could only be described as shambolic scenes as droves waiting to enter The Garage.
Eventually though, we got in and all the trouble was worth it. First up were The Tea Street Band and having memorably played a storming set at the Garage back in 2012, the lads were no strangers to the venue and once again they appeared right at home.
In no time at all their set flew by in a Balearic haze with their repertoire from Disco Lights to Summer Dreaming being blasted with gusto.
tea street band live at duke street garage
The Tea Street Band performing live at Duke Street Garage
The Kooks followed and from the moment they took over, a sea of girls on shoulders and camera phones were hoisted in the air. With new material intertwined with old, there’s no surprise that Ooh La, She Moves in Her Own Way to Seaside go down a treat with the crowd before the band’s signature track Naive signs off a memorable hour in the company of Sound City‘s biggest draw.
Admittedly the finale left us feeling drained both physically and mentally. Covering a vast amount of bands in such a short space of time does that to you but without this vibrant and unique festival, the city of Liverpool would be a whole lot poorer without these three special days that bring the city centre to life.
Further reading on Getintothis
Liverpool Sound City 2014 Review: Day One Round Up.
* Liverpool Sound City 2014: Top 10 Merseyside bands to watch
* Liverpool Sound City 2014: Top 10 international bands to watch.
* Liverpool Sound City 2014: Top 10 UK bands to watch.
* Liverpool Sound City 2014: Getintothis‘ guide to the venues.
* Liverpool Sound City 2014: Things to do off the beaten track.
* John Cale – the grit in the oyster that shaped the sound we worship today.
* Liverpool Sound City 2014: Revo‘s routeplanner – the insider’s guide.
* Liverpool Sound City 2014: Getintothis presents Jon Hopkins and stellar Merseyside show at Nation.
* Liverpool Sound City 2014: Fringe events and John Peel World Cup revealed.
* Liverpool Sound City 2014: The Hold Steady ready to bear their teeth.
* Liverpool Sound City 2014 – a Getintothis festival playlist.
* Liverpool Sound City 2014 add The Kooks to festival bill.
* Liverpool Sound City 2014: He used to come round wearing make up and strange Japanese Kimono clothing – David Pichilingi.
* Liverpool Sound City 2014: Jon Hopkins, Albert Hammond Jnr, Drenge and more for May festival.
* Liverpool Sound City 2014 announce headliners Kodaline plus Gruff Rhys and Fuck Buttons for May festival
* Liverpool Sound City 2014: John Cale and Thurston Moore head up Conference speakers
* Liverpool Sound City 2014 reveal football, music and style themes
* Liverpool Sound City 2013: Top 10 bands and review round up of the festival