On the eve of Liverpool Sound City, Getintothis chats to festival band booker and EVOL promoter Steve ‘Revo’ Miller about the unmissable acts at the festival, ridiculous rider requests and Come Dine With Me.
Liverpool Sound City kicks off tomorrow. Tomorrow! If you’re anything like us, you’ll still be madly scouring the huge line up trying to unearth gems and pick out who to watch over the weekend.
It’s not easy, there’s bloody loads on. Well there’s help at hand, and who better to give us the inside knowledge on the best artists to catch at this year’s festival than the man who helped book them. Steve ‘Revo’ Miller has been booking bands for Club EVOL for over 12 years, and helped curate every Sound City line up since it began in 2007.
He’s responsible for bringing some much talked about acts to the city in the past such as The Oh Sees, Jake Bugg and Jon Hopkins, and this year has brought us the likes of the Flaming Lips, Swans and Peace among many others. We caught up with him to chat all things Sound City, for the low down on who to catch this year and most importantly, who would play him in a film.
Getintothis: Hey Steve, nice one on doing the business with this year’s line up – who are you most looking forward to – and give us some lesser known tips.
Revo: I can’t hide it’s The Flaming Lips I’m most looking forward too, and then Swans, who’ve been going near 30 years and are finally making their Liverpool debut. Denmark’s Iceage are another and I watched Bad Breeding at Eurosonic and they were the band of the festival for me.
I think Fucked Up are the greatest living punk band in the world today, I know exactly what they’ll do live for us. Sean Lennon returns with his band The GOASTT, he was really superb when he played the Kazimier, his surname is a lot to live up to, especially here in the fatherland and he staked his own claim, plus he’s been playing festivals the world over so has built up a head of steam.
Unknown Mortal Orchestra will be playing their brand new record and I think Slaves will take it to new levels. I could go on all day about the line up, there’s a rich abundance of amazing stuff happening throughout.
Getintothis: There’s been such a weight of expectation with the new site, tell us some insider tips to navigate it and a little more about the set up.
Revo: It’s quite a simple compact T shaped site that kind of leans more to the left than the right, the main stage is at the far tip and it’s outdoors against the banks of the Mersey, backdropped against the Liverpool skyline in a really nice position.
The second stage is the Baltic Warehouse curated by EVOL and that’s indoors inside an old timber yard that’s been cleared especially for the festival, and dotted in between and around are a series of smaller emerging talent stages. It’s like a microcosm of Liverpool, everything is very close but just enough far away.
Getintothis: Looking back over your years booking bands at Sound City, which artists are you most chuffed with booking – and which ones are you gutted slipped through the net – and who would be a dream signing for the future?
Revo: Oh man, I could list hundreds that have slipped through the net, there’s been heartbreak every year, sometimes you get so close but in seconds you’re too far, many many endurance hunts. That’s why I’m pretty happy this year as we have some dream bookings.
Shows that stick out in the memory are Thee Oh Sees, hard to top that one, they were very special, Jon Hopkins last year, Death In Vegas, Kurt Vile, Alt-J, Wild Beasts, Santogold, Crystal Castles, Late of the Pier. I’ll keep stum on the future as they haven’t happened yet.
Getintothis: Top three records of 2015 so far?
Revo: Stealing Sheep – Not Real, All We Are – All We Are, Outfit – Slowness.
Getintothis: Have you had any ridiculous rider requests over the years at Sound City – or indeed for EVOL?
Revo: Yeah many, although they just seem to be stacked with booze these days, not so many postcards, matchbox cars or socks. A lot of coconut water, long gone are the days of flowers and chocolates and the odd herbal cigarette.
Getintothis: We know you’re bang into your scran – any word on any top food heading to Sound City? Oh, and if you were on Come Dine With Me – what would you serve up?
Revo: I just couldn’t do Come Dine With Me, I can just about do a decent curry and a steak though… I’ve heard there’s wagon trains of good stuff coming to the festival site, folk need to eat well to have the stamina to watch all the groups we have on for three days so expect various delicacies from around the world.
Getintothis: Finally, who would you have play you in a film?
Revo: A young Gary Oldman with Christopher Walken roped in to do my dance moves.
At Sound City I’m largely gonna be floating around the EVOL stage but will be grabbing bits and pieces of the others bands I booked for the festival as it’s all pretty close together. Here’s my planner.
Friday May 22
18:00 Bad Meds
20:50 Loyle Carner
21:00 Everything Everything
22:30 The Vaccines
00:30 Roni Size Reprazent
Saturday May 23
13:30 Strange Collective
14:00 The Vryll Society
15:00 The Sundowners
16:00 The Serpent Power
16:30 Hooton Tennis Club
17:00 All We Are
17:30 God Damn
18:00 Dutch Uncles
18:30 Bad Breeding
19:00 The GOASTT
19:30 The Bohicas
20:00 Stealing Sheep
20:30 The Membranes
21:00 The Thurston Moore Band
21:30 Unknown Mortal Orchestra
22:30 The Flaming Lips
01:00 Evian Christ – LIVE
Sunday May 24
13:30 Pixel Fix
16:00 Jane Weaver
16:30 The Mispers
17:00 Bill Ryder-Jones
17:30 Moon King
18:00 Cymbals Eat Guitars
18:30 Clarence Clarity
19:30 Single Mothers
20:15 The Griswolds
21:00 Gaz Coombes
22:15 Jennifer Davies
22:30 Dave McCabe & The Ramifications
23:00 Belle & Sebastian
01:00 The Fat White Family
01:40 Tim Peaks Diner