Young Fathers shatter the Kazimier to bits as Getintothis’ Craig MacDonald witnessed their return to Liverpool in one of the gigs of the year.
The moment you walked through the doors of The Kazimier you could feel the thirst in the air for tonight’s proceedings to begin.
An ebullient sea of anticipation was awash throughout the packed innards of the venue for the return of one of the most exciting bands in recent years. Accompanying the neon red EVOL lightbox was the flag of the Young Fathers was raised high above the stage with their company soaking up the battle fever.
Those that were lucky enough to have witnessed their Liverpool debut when they tore apart FestEVOL in the same venue in 2013, will have that display engraved into the memory and may have licked their sonic lips in anticipation. For the ones who had not been so fortunate, little did they know the wonder that was to greet them later.
Tonight’s support are both befitting for the wide ranging scope of sounds that tonight’s headliners channel.
When I Am King are first to grace the stage offering a soulful starting point that many found instantly appealing. The four-piece, formerly known as Coffee and Cakes For Funerals, are a tight unit with addictive bass lines, a mosaic arrangement of drums and Joe Hazlett‘s vocals that pour over to make a delightful sound that stirs many of the ever-expanding crowd into their groove. This may be the early days for When I Am King but with songs such as the astounding I Need Help showcasing their complex melodies they are destined to only grow on to bigger and better things.
The main support was the poetic enigma that is Kojey Radical. An accomplished wordsmith and poet there is no doubt of, however that may not be said about his transition to musician. Not yet at least. From the beginnings of the set, you could have been mistaken this for being a comedy act or hype man similar to Doc Brown but as the set progressed it became clearer that he truly can balance poetry with music to great effect.
The delivery of his words and the subject matter in Preacher Preacher was astonishing and showed the amazing potential he has. In contract to the beginning of the set it was unbelievable to think this was the same artist such was the transformation.
With the thunderous marching drums of Steven Morrison hailing the warriors arrival, the three-headed beast that is Young Fathers strode onto the stage were their hungry public awaited. As Alloysious Massaquoi starts proceeding off with a brief offering of Liberated the trio swiftly move into a full scale assault on the senses. The Queen is Dead proving the pinnacle of the atomic cluster they unleash from Mercury-winning debut album Dead.
The head spinning menace that is Feasting gives a maniac cry to the troops and sets us up for a frenzied rendition of the iconic Get Up. As the jack in the box that is Kayus Bankole bursts around the stage with and unrelenting energy, he leads us all into the anthem. The tribal spell that Young Fathers cast on us has truly set in with all at their mercy.
A stunning version of Dare from their second album White Men Are Black Men Too showcases the mastery of the bands vocals and the hybrid of the many different sounds they bring together. With the gospel prayer of Get Started advising us of their intentions, Young Fathers then obliterate the Kazimier with ‘G’ Hastings kicking off the raw velocity fuelled Shame to bring utter hysteria upon all.
Tonight Young Fathers not only showed the diversity in the music styles they have devoured to achieve their sound but the dexterity at which they can deliver it. They are truly one of the best bands to witness in the flesh and if you get an opportunity to see them grasp it with both hands as you will not be disappointed.
If you were their then you will know, this evening was the stuff of legends and will be up there with one of the last great gigs The Kazimier will see.
For a full interview with Young Fathers check this link.
Pictures by Getintothis‘ Tom Adam