In a new column on the Liverpool music scene for PlanetNotion.com, our man in the know, Philip Bakstad, will be reporting on the aural delights of the Guinness World Record Capital of Pop (with more artists who’ve scored a number one hit than any other city). First up, the crazy world of Chew Disco…
Liverpool’s a funny little city. Rich in culture, steeped in musical history (not all of it great, I’ll admit) and home to at least 60,000 students on top of the million or so Scousers who reside here, it does turn into a bit of a ghost town for about six weeks in the middle of the summer. Don’t get me wrong – there’s still plenty to do and see but, it seems, that May’s annual Liverpool Sound City Festival and the City Council-sponsored and organised Matthew Street Festival in August act as book-ends to a period of relative calm in the ‘Pool.
As such, the return of our student population means a few things – there’s less annoying schoolkids lurking around town for one but, mostly, the crop of DIY clubnights and gigs really kicks into gear again. Enter our first destination for the new season – Chew Disco.
Now in its seventh instalment and just over a year old, Chew Disco is Liverpool’s only DIY queer-punk, LGBT fundraiser and took The Shipping Forecast’s basement room, ‘The Hold’, last Friday 10th with live performances from local boys We Came Out Like Tigers, Londoners Matron and Leeds’ Pifco. All three bands delivered stellar performances to an appreciative crowd, with special mention going to WCOLT, who were definitely the draw of the evening.
These boys give Screamo a good name. Pure and simple. Their performance was energetic and emotional but never irritating, as so many Screamo bands can often veer towards. They marry the finer elements of hardcore and post-punk into their sound, too, which results in a taut, intense 25 minutes for everyone involved – band and audience alike. Definitely a few new converts by the end of their set…
Post-performances, Chew Disco evolves into your new favourite club-night. The Chew Disco Go-Gos took to the stage to a slightly bonkers soundtrack including RuPaul, Diplo, Siouxsie and the Banshees, Gang of Four and PJ Harvey to name but a few, provided by Miss Emma O! and yours truly. Clearly, the effects of The Shipping Forecast’s fine range of beers had taken its toll by then. The Hold has a capacity of only just 120, though, and it was certainly packed to the rafters til very late – so we must have been doing something right!
Chew Disco returns to The Shipping Forecast on October 29th for a Halloween ‘Zombie Sock Hop’ with performances from Maria and The Gay, Organ Freeman and Barbieshop. More details are on Facebook – just search for Chew Disco.
This weekend sees the launch of the Liverpool Biennial 2010 – the largest festival of contemporary art in Europe. I’ve got an invite to the launch party on Friday so expect to hear all about that one next week.
- Philip Bakstad