Getintothis’ Nathaniel Cummings catches The Vryll Society prove their worth at the top of the Liverpool psych scene.
As soon as you turned onto Bold Street you could feel the buzz surrounding this one. An evening offering an enlightening mixture of some of Liverpool’s trippiest bands. A set by The Floormen not only showcased their own recent improvement, but set the intimate, intoxicating kind of tone that grew stronger still through the night – their progressive jams have taken more the form of individual songs, as the three-piece impress though the band is still in it’s infancy.
Sankofa were next and delivered the thumping, turning kind of set we’ve learned to expect from them over the last couple of years. The constant and brooding bass lines left room for bluesy lashings of lead guitar and a powerful lead vocal that filled the venue with such a fulfilling tonal wave.
With so many familiar faces in the audience – it was almost as if a representative from some of Liverpool’s biggest bands had been sent (and a few recognizable out-of-towners), it wasn’t hard to figure out why. The Vryll Society were about to give a righteous demonstration of why they’ve kicked up so much fuss over recent months.
The audience almost swooned with the guitar movement throughout the show, a sound embodied by the enchanting movements and performance of frontman Mike Ellis, and the vibe was really intimate. We were treated to the reverberating best of October’s Pangea as Coshh began our entrancement – it was intense, yet calmly and perfectly executed, and the front of the crowd was evidence of how those who were fully-hypnotized couldn’t help but groove. Air brought a sigh of excitement from the audience that almost matched the breathy vocal that ghosted over the gathered heads below, and the assertive bassline and rhythm rolled through those eagerly watching.
The singles that preceded the recent E.P., Beautiful Faces and Deep Blue Skies drew tribal chants from the crowd as the ceremonial atmosphere hit fever pitch. But what was most impressive is how the band emblemised how they’ve managed to reach this level – how could The Vryll Society match their unforgettable show at The Kazimier from earlier this year? New material. And it was incredible.
Those keen enough to have listened to their live session on BBC Radio Merseyside the week before would have hoped for a repeat of what was currently an exclusive performance of unheard track Andrei Rublev – and when it’s vivid, mystical lyrics and movements finally came, it promised us that 2016 was going to be even bigger for a band for whom, in our opinion, the sky’s the limit.
Pictures by Getintothis’ John Johnson