CMU Playlists

Playlist: Liverpool Sound City 2010

By | Published on Saturday 22 May 2010

Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Liverpool Sound City week.

Yes, we’re in the middle of a five day festival of gigs, showcases, talks, debates, panels and other musical wondrousness, so good, in fact, we just made up the word ‘wondrousness’ to describe it.

But where to start with so much on offer? Well, start here. We asked Peter Guy, writer of Liverpool-based music blog and editor of Liverpool Sound City’s very own daily sheet The Liberator, to pick out ten of the artists playing LSC this year, and to compile songs from them into a Powers Of Ten Spotify playlist. And here it is.

Says Peter: “I was sitting on the couch, searching for an angle, when suddenly Sean appears on Facebook Chat and just blurts out the obvious, ‘just say SOUND CITY IS BLOODY BRILLIANT’. He’s right. I love Sean. And I love Liverpool Sound City. I love it because it takes place in my home city – my favourite city in the world. And it’s emergence has coincided with an artistic and cultural renaissance which over the last few years has transformed this town into a daily bussle of not-to-miss happenings”.

“Take last week: the legendary Gil Scott-Heron popped in to the Philharmonic Hall to deliver an outstanding set of banter and blues to launch the third year of Liverpool Sound City, while uptown Foals were kicking off their new tour here, all of which followed a heady week of ear-indulgence from the likes of The Bronx, Black Rebel, Pulled Apart By Horses, Times New Viking and our very own The Seal Cub Clubbing Club”.

“But this week things get really silly as Liverpool Sound City rolls into action: 450 bands over four days and nights plus music industry conferences including the likes of the man who signed Madonna – Seymour Stein. The party in the Pool of Life has never been this good. Andrew WK is our patron”.

Click here to listen to Peter’s playlist in Spotify
, and then read on to find out more about his selections.

01 Lonelady – Army
One of my tracks of the year simply because of that guitar tone – it takes me back to Peter Buck’s raw jangle on ‘Murmur’ – and combined with Julie Campbell’s snarky delivery, this is one of the freshest things to come out Manchester in some time.

02 Mugstar – Crempog Smultron
Easily one of the finest bands to come out of Liverpool in recent years, and it’s fitting their new record ‘…sun, broken…’ has been released on Important Records, home of like-eared lunatics Grails, Cave and Acid Mothers Temple. Loud, heavy but rooted in ridiculous grooves – one for the beards and for the birds.

03 Voo – Made Simple

Voo have been kicking around Liverpool longer than The Beatles, and despite big ups from the likes of Drowned In Sound don’t seem to have caught on. They make perfect power college pop usually clocking in under around the two minute mark which means when they release their Greatest No Hits record it’ll probably be a double LP with about 142 tracks.

04 The Phenomenal Handclap Band – 15 To 20

The Phenoms played Kazimier (the UK’s best music venue) early this year and afterwards went on the lash, ending up in legendary Liverpool indie ashtray Le Bateau, before one of them (the poncho-wearing 70s throwback hipster one) was promptly chucked out for having a piss in the corner of the club. Poor form. This golden shower of liquid gold could’ve dropped straight off my fave disco/funk comp, ‘Magnum Opus’ and is guaranteed to get y’all on it.

05 Sound Movement – Long Shadows

Earlier this year I had to write a blurb for this Aussie trio’s new single, ‘The Last Time’. It was a proper Paul Morley job, but the band loved it. It’s the best thing they’ve ever done and it’s unfortunately not on Spotify but their old EP is out there, which is good but not a patch on their new swag. Here’s the blurb in all it’s glory: “With pulsating harmonics, glass-cutter riffs, motorik rhythms and a white-hot whirlwind heart, ‘The Last Time’ flows and crashes like an ocean conducted by Jason Pierce – The Sound Movement are the Bruce Lee of pop; refusing form, they adapt, build and grow – like water. Empty your mind”.

06 Holy Fuck – Super Inuit (Live)

The Fucker’s debut album was good, but it’s not a patch on their live performances. Like !!! and much of the DFA crew, they’re ultra polished on record but live they’re a blender of mushed up rhythms and propulsive chaos – this is perhaps as close to their intense and wildly fun stage set as you’re gonna get – one not to miss.

07 Wave Machines – The Line

Wave Machines are to Sound City, what Shellac are to All Tomorrow’s Parties, they’re the festival’s in-house band. Unlike anything to come out of Liverpool in living memory they marry camped up Prince pop with a murderous undercurrent of lyrical nastiness.

08 Forest City Lovers – Don’t Go

It’s fair to say Canada has been spoiling us for a very long time with wonga ear candy, so it’s fitting that Sound City is serving up a snazzy showcase of uber-cool Canadian bands at the Masque Theatre. Eamon McGrath with The Mowhawk Lodge, Rich Aucoin and The Pack AD are three on offer but my favourite is Forest City Lovers – understated electro-folk with sweeping violin-led arrangements that’ll have the Nick Drake lovers in bits.

09 Archie Bronson Outift – Chunk

I was a bit slow on the uptake with this lot. Sound City chief booker Steve ‘Revo’ Miller said to me: “I snapped up this lot with you in mind, Pete”. But I had to concede I knew nowt about them. Coincidently, days later Domino sent me their new record, ‘Coconut’, and I instanty fell for it. This one deviates from their trademark raucous racket, reminding me of David Byrne singing under water to a funky Fela Kuti beat.

10 Errors – A Rumour In Africa

Kick-arse death disco cloaked in layers of squelchy, glitchy noodling that’s so unmarketable they’re destined to have to eat spaghetti hoops on dry bread forever. That they’re on Mogwai’s Rock Action label makes them ten times cooler.