REVIEW: What we got up to at Sound City 2019

Hannah Willwood at Constellations Garden
RETURNING to the Baltic Triangle area of Liverpool, the award-winning Sound City excelled itself for  2019.

At first, many doubters could have been fooled by the lack of big-name artists but Sound City have created something very special - an odyssey of discovery.

Spanning from Friday, May 3 to Sunday, May 5 the festival began with it's world-renowned conference Sound City + welcoming musos such as OMD's Andy McCluskey, David Bowie producer Erin Tonkon and BBC Introducing's Huw Stephens.

Both Saturday and Sunday were arguably the 'main event'.

It was a cold and breezy weekend but the sun shone down on us for this stellar musical celebration.

This year the festival featured a brand-new outdoor stage, late night parties, international music and curated one of the year’s freshest and on-point lineups.

More than 100 artists descended on Liverpool - an incredible feat in itself.

Headlining the festival there was Loyle Carner, who had worked with students from Liverpool as part of the ground-breaking Levi’s Music Project plus Shame, Mabel and slowthai.

For us, Sunday was the day to BE at Sound City.

We began by watching local lads The Shipbuilders at The Baltic Roastery who performed tracks such as Faultline, The Moon and Feeling In My Pocket to the almost packed-out coffee shop.

They aired latest single Silk Road which will be released on Mai 68 Records on Friday, May 24.

Overlapping slightly, we dashed to catch the end of Mamatung's set at District.

These powerful women presented a cosmic set of mind-bending vocals, far-out instrumentals and their perpetual humour.
The Shipbuilders

Then basking in the sun we made our short pilgrimage to Constellations Garden, having enjoyed last year's stage so much there we were eager to see what musical discoveries we would make this year.

It was great to see Bands FC and Jacaranda Recs making an appearance.

This year, the Horizons music project took over the garden area with a handpicked selection of the future of Welsh sounds.

We stumbled on soulful songstress Hannah Willwood, a 21-year-old singer/songwriter from Snowdonia.

Oozing indie jazz, Hannah's set was unbelievable.

Moving inside Constellations we found Aussie psych outfit Nice Biscuit.

Brand New Friend
Fronted by femme-fatales Billie Star and Grace Cuell, their cosmic, intergalactic sound impressed a wide-mouthed crowd who were absorbed in their gravitational pull.

Playing tracks such as Captain, the band blew expectations out the water with a set full of feverish space-age tunes.

Heading to the Birdies stage it was time to catch our good pals Brand New Friend.

Sound City marked their first ever show in Liverpool after always visiting the city coming over on the ferry from Belfast.

Fronted by brother/sister vocalists Taylor and Lauren Johnson, their alt-indie rock went down a storm at the venue - they're definitely ones to watch for 2019.

Other highlights include a fantastic set from Tim Burgess who was joined on stage by Laetitia Bocquet from Average Sex and an in conversation with legendary actor and Sound City regular Paddy Considine.

Summing up, the festival is alive and kicking.

We cannot wait to see what next year brings.

Final word from Sound City's Managing Director Rebecca Ayres:
 “We couldn’t be more thrilled with the weekend we have just had! Simply incredible from start to finish at Sound City once more, as we brought together some of the most innovative, creative and boundary-breaking names to this fantastic place. So much effort goes into creating the festival and I want to thank everyone who took part on stage, our brilliant team behind the scenes, and of course everyone who came to party with us from across the UK. We send huge and heartfelt thanks to everyone who has supported us for our 12th year and all years previously, and we are already looking ahead to 2020! But first a bit of a rest.”

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