HEAVENLY 25

Harvest Sun @ The Kazimier Club & Garden 5/7/15

Since Heavenly Recordings began 25 years ago it has gone on to become one of the most highly respected and sought-after independent labels for fans and musicians alike. Having spawned the careers of such influential artists as The Manic Street Preachers, it has consistently adhered to a well-defined aesthetic and a commitment to releasing new and innovative work. With its current roster boasting some of our local scene’s most exciting acts, it made perfect sense to have a celebratory bash in one of Liverpool’s best-loved venues, and so that’s exactly what Jeff Barrett and co. decided to do.

Taking place across the garden and club venues at The Kazimier, the daytime events are staged outside. Despite the bad weather there is a jubilant atmosphere, and with sets from DUKE GARWOOD, GWENNO, KID WAVE and STEALING SHEEP there is good reason for the cheery vibes. Stealing Sheep’s premiere of their new conceptual performance Legs stands out, as they eschew their usual hooky vocal harmonies to delve into a 25-minute electronic set complete with colourfully-attired dancers.

As the evening approaches it is time to move inside and catch London-based five-piece THE VOYEURS. Their blend of art-school indie rock is interesting and well thought-out, but there is a sense that the set never really peaks, and the crowd seem slightly underwhelmed as it draws to a close.

 

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Never ones to leave a crowd wanting, however, are local group HOOTON TENNIS CLUB, who burst on to the stage to deliver a frenzied and memorable romp. Coming off the back of a storming performance at Glastonbury, Hooton are fast becoming one of the most talked-about live acts in the country, and it is clear to see why. Newly released single Kathleen Sat On The Arm Of Her Favourite Chair has the audience singing along in fine voice, a testament to frequent air-time on BBC 6Music, plus the fact it’s a damn good song. With a mammoth tour ahead of them and the release of their debut album in August, Hooton Tennis Club are clearly destined for great things, and based on tonight’s show they absolutely deserve it.

Another band to seriously turn heads at Worthy Farm this year were the ever-ebullient KING GIZZARD & THE WIZARD LIZARD. With two drummers, three guitarists, a bassist and a harmonica player, their jazz-infused psychedelic rock shows are truly a thing to behold. With constant time changes and impressive musicianship the songs are played back-to-back, creating a seamless wave of sound that hops between melodies and guitar patterns. A mesmerising display from one of Australia’s current best exports.

Finishing off the line-up of bands on an all-dayer which has fulfilled its promise are grungey three-piece THE WYTCHES. They emerge to a now fairly drunken and enthusiastic crowd of revellers and blaze their way through a selection of songs that are clearly well-known to those present. However, though it may simply be due to the sheer quality of acts that have come before them, the set does appear slightly lacking, and it is perhaps not the barn-storming end to the day that most were expecting. It has still undisputedly been a triumph though, and it is left to DJ BERNIE CONNOR to play out the night in typically stylish fashion.

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