- Wild Rossa And The ‘88
- Eno G
There’s already a strong crowd gathered here in Buyers Club when the first act, ENO G, steps up to the stage. Eno is a masterful keyboard player who has his stylistic roots planted in the rich soils of disco and soul. His guitar player adds some tight, funk-fuelled syncopation, bringing a clear sense of momentum to the set. The dynamics throughout seem to be a little lost; maybe Eno would be better suited to a full band affair. Despite the nit-picking though, it’s a strong, solid set that definitely warms up the venue’s growing crowd.
Next up come WILD ROSSA AND THE ’88. It would be quite a feat to categorise this bunch: they have elements of folk, jazz, rock, blues and soul in their sound. First off, though, the searing vocals of Luke Papini soar across the room and reduce the crowd to silence. This is a heart-wrenchingly sincere show of emotion and, as the other band members eventually filter their way into the performance, we are stunned. The players onstage display absolute technical proficiency and their musicianship makes the set flow beautifully. Rossa And The ’88 leave an indelible stamp on the night as a whole.
It’s been a little while since tonight’s headliner, DIZRAELI, has played in Liverpool. Last time he was here he was with his musical troupe THE SMALL GODS, touring as a full band in support of their last single. Tonight’s show is a much more stripped-back, personal experience, however, and from the minute he steps on stage there exists a deep, engaging connection between him and the audience. The elaborate stage design is all of Dizraeli’s own making and it evokes something tribal and spiritual. Indeed, as he starts the show, he talks of his interpretation of the phrase ‘Attention is the natural prayer of the soul’ by Nicolas Malebranch and admits that, while he is far from religious, he can’t help but believe that we as humans are, in his words, fuckin’ holy.
Then comes the music and the poetry. His guitar playing is flawlessly raw and he sings with such power and passion that the sound leaps from the bottom of his throat and his heart. There is simply no question about sincerity or integrity in this performance: Diz bears his soul with such naked, stark intensity that he seems to explode with energy throughout the set.
There’s a relentless mix of music interspersed with poetry and stories. He plays through the tracks from his profound and vital new EP, Eat My Camera, and dedicates the powerful Cool And Calm to the sufferers in Calais and Palestine. He also plays other EP tracks such as the stirring Morning Light and the inspirational title piece Eat My Camera. The most moving spoken piece is his poem The Depths, which tackles homophobia and is taken from The Small Gods’ song of the same name. He also runs through a glut of various pieces, such as Maria, Reach Out and We Had A Song.
By the end of the set we’re no longer a room full of strangers. Dizraeli’s new material puts emphasis on intimacy and paying attention to our surroundings in every respect. As he walks off stage, having experienced this together, we’re now a room full of friends.