As the New Jersey outfit Ducktails kickstarted Liverpool International Festival of Psychedelia, Getintothis’ Amaan Khan saw the lines between support and headliners get blurred.
Liverpool’s Constellations is ripe with a bustling gathering of local musicians, local promoters, local tastemakers and just regular gig-goers – all filled with a visible anticipation for Liverpool International Festival of Psychedelia, with its healthy record of surpassing expectations every year.
The gathering, scattered among various areas of Constellations gradually consolidates itself near the stage as New Jersey outfit Ducktails takes the stage.
While at first there is some noticeable confusion among a smaller portion of the crowd as the fact dawns on that Ducktails isn’t a full fledged band but the stage name of raw pop solo lad Matthew Mondanile, it all settles down soon enough to the dreamy fuzzy music.
Ducktails delivers a set of warm sounds that relaxes you with its easy-going drum machine beats while it’s evident that he knows his craft on guitar and songwriting.
A couple or two do a slow dance to it and most of us let it carry us through the night with a gentle sway – the relaxing music befits it all well.
Taking the prize on the night however is Ali Horn with his brand of cinematic psych-rock. The last time we saw him supporting Frankie Cosmos, we felt he played his best card first.
This time it seems like all the songs of the former half of his set are equally good and when it might seem to be growing stale – here comes a load of semi-controlled feedback in place of guitar solo.
While he still carries an introverted stage presence, a feature constant through the night, the band is visibly enjoying themselves and have loosened up well – perhaps courtesy of some pre-gig pints.
The little that we saw of The Goa Express, the first act of the evening, proved that they were the loudest act of the night but regardless – from Goa Express‘s garage punk to Ali Horn‘s psych-rock and Ducktails‘s fuzzy pop, the opening party was a relaxed precursor to the massive chaos of Liverpool International Festival of Psychedelia.
Images by Getintothis’ Warren Millar