Last.fm returned to Liverpool Sound City recently for the third year running; mixing industry conferences with a plethora of superb live music. The festival saw over a hundred bands playing across the city’s most paramount venues, whilst the conference certainly provided an interesting insight for industry folk and aspiring musicians alike.
We kicked off our Thursday evening with incredible talent Willis Earl Beal. After his recent appearance on Jools Holland we knew he’d be a highlight, with the room packed out for the Chicago soul/blues singer. Opening with an acapella track, he captivated the audience for the most unique and memorable performance of the weekend. We quickly headed to the designated Last.fm venue for the weekend – the charming Leaf Café. We caught the soothing sounds of By The Sea, before heading to watch last year’s Last.fm headliner Willy Mason. Unsurprisingly playing to a packed out stage, Mason’s performance was faultless. Back over at the Leaf Café it was time for Leeds two-piece Fossil Collective before finishing our evening at the Red Bull venue. Held in a derelict carpark we listened to one of the UK’s biggest breakthrough bands this year Django Django.
Friday night’s proceedings began at the Leaf Café with the beautiful soloist I Am Dive. Other highlights included BBC Sound of 2012 winner Michael Kiwanuka at The Epstein Theatre (restored recently and named after The Beatles’ manger Brian Epstein). The jazz/soul singer took to the stage with his 5-piece band playing recognisable hits from his much hyped debut Home Again. Big guitars and drums was the tall order back over at the Leaf Café when Funeral Suits soundtracked our venue before we finished our evening at Red Bull venue with dark pop princess Charli XCX. Her powerful infectious voice filled out the room, much to the crowd’s delight.
We started off our night early on Saturday, with live music from Golden Fable in the beautiful settings of the old Bombed Out Church. Heading straight over to our venue for Canadian group Library Voices who opened the show, before Liverpool homegrown talent Owls* took over. At the Epstein Theatre was headliner James Vincent McMorrow, who’s soul filled voice had the crowd completely captivated with everyone in utter silence.
Last up was Last.fm headliner Sweet Billy Pilgrim, providing anthemic choruses recognisable from their recent offering Crown and Treaty. The quartet’s neo-folk sounds proved to be a brilliant close to the evening and festival.
Check out our photo album of the event on our Facebook page.
Django Django will be appearing here: