Wave Pictures and friends provide the backdrop for an emotional night, as Getintothis’ Curt McArdle waves goodbye to Liverpool within the Kazimier’s confines.
Sometimes what should really be a typical night at the usual venue turns out to mean much more.
It’s not the choice of bands that’s playing on my mind. In fact I haven’t felt this excited about a combination of support and headliners since Doldrums and Purity Ring teamed up back in November.
It’s the timing, or the lack thereof. Tonight is my penultimate night in Liverpool, so it’s only right I receive the proper send off.
How nice of Harvest Sun and Bam Bam Bam to pull talent, new and old, near and far, to the Kazimier on such an emotional day. It’s what I’d always have wanted.
The demographics at the octagon seem about right; mid twenty-something’s with awkward glasses and charity shop jumpers perch themselves on the steps, because, you know, it’s the Kazimier, and that’s what you do.
When the pictures were first making waves and I was still a lost 13 year old boy, these were the kind of people I wanted to be. I wanted them jumpers, those glasses and that knowhow.
I wanted to listen to Radio 6 and talk about ethical coffee. These were the original hipsters, the coolest dudes on the planet. It makes me sad that this breed has all but died out and all todays alt-youths have to look up to are the likes of me. Bring back 2008.
Hillary & The Democrats, possible front runners for ‘worst band name in Liverpool’, kick the show off to an expectedly poppy start, swaying awkwardly between Romance Is Boring era Los Campesinos! and Born Ruffians livelier stuff.
Last time they supported Wave Pictures, they were called boring and with a lot of the new stuff fading into the desolate crowd like a low quality MP3 at the back of a high-ceilinged bar, it’s not hard to see why.
But to write the whole show off as boring seems harsh. There’s no denying the synth heavy tracks pack a little punch, and the on stage chemistry keeps all 20 of us entertained sufficiently enough to see the short set through to its close. With a little work, there could be a future in the unconventionality of H&TD.
Did someone say future? Is there much we can really say about VEYU, tonight’s second support, that hasn’t already been said?
The opener of acid laden Foals bass-vibes sets the tone for a psych-fest that mirrors Madchester-less Jagwar Ma trading blows with The Physics House Band.
Cosmic drums plateau in and out of sugar-crystal distorted vocals, some tracks teasing trance, others almost Muse-brand prog, the closer even flaunting intricate key changes and guitar mashing worthy of Battles.
It’s a journey, more than anything else. The stand out track, however, comes in the form of mega hit Running, which seems to hand pick each and every positive of Tame Impala’s Lonerism and lay it out on an ice cold platter of dream-funk, accessible, without being too easy.
Obviously, this made things a little awkward. How do you follow an act like VEYU? Especially given that VEYU’s sound is, dare we say it, a little more ‘grown up’ than that of Wave Pictures.
It’s simple, isn’t it? You just need to be very good at your trade, and being very good at your trade is something Wave Pictures are very good at doing.
It’s impossible to criticise the ability, that’s for sure, and perhaps that’s the secret to their longevity, but it’s in this longevity that their faults lie.
You see, all other bands of that era, of that ilk, either called it a day or let their sound progress, and that’s where Wave Pictures seem to have fallen behind.
The new stuff sounds like the old stuff, and the old stuff all sounds pretty similar, but in doing so, they’ve almost created their own niche.
This lack of progression thus makes Wave Pictures just about the only band still using that sound, becoming perhaps the most original unoriginal band in the country, and I’m struggling to see that as a bad thing.
Sure, the lyrics don’t tackle the most stringent of topics, Love You Like A Madman probably the hardest hitting, a tale of love loss and tinned apricots, but that’s part of the appeal. It’s all encompassing.
The crowd love it, because it’s easy to take in. They sing along, move to the beats, all without having to think about it. Its music in its most natural form, and hell, if it isn’t broke, don’t fix it. It works on record. It works live. It worked in 2008, and it still works in 2013. Long may it continue.
Further reading on Getintothis:
VEYU: Running, Morning Light, Shadows
Astral Coast 2013: Esco Williams, By The Sea, Tear Talk, VEYU, Undiscovered Society
Wave Pictures, Hillary and the Democrats, The Loose Hearts, Secret Garden Gathering: The Shipping Forecast, Liverpool