‘You could’ve been watching X Factor tonight or anything, but you’re here’
Tucked beneath a run-down building on the outskirts of the city centre, walking into 24 Kitchen Street felt like walking into an art installation, with abstract images being projected all along the left wall of the room. Support came from Mother Superior and Deliah, though it was the third act on, Breakfast Monkey, who caught my eye. The lead singer, Maxime McGowan, was reminiscent of a lion – wild and proud, and he completed their set whilst swigging from beer bottles. Breakfast Monkey were loud, brash and so very heavy rock, and the artsy audience were thriving off it, moshing to every song. Not something I normally consider to be my ‘cup of tea’, the audience and bands enthusiasm made it thoroughly enjoyable.
But it wasn’t long before the main headline act took the stage. Mutant Vinyl (Edwin Pope: originally from Bournemouth but a former student at LIPA) is clearly still invested with Liverpool, and this gig has been heralded as his ‘comeback’. He opened the set with his biggest hit, ‘Lavender,’ a haze inducing tune that mixes synthetic sounds with the bold melodies that only a saxophone can deliver. Not only has this tune been tipped by BBC Radio 2, but Mutant Vinyl also joined artists like Scouting for Girls and Beverly Knight on tour, as well as being specially invited onstage by well known ‘trip hop’ artist, Tricky.
Despite having only just graduated University, Mutant Vinyl is clearly practiced in his art – transitioning from guitar to saxophone to voice with absolute ease. I was surprised to discover just how good the saxophone sounds alongside a reggae beat (particularly during the track ‘Dread’).
Personally, my highlight of the gig was his final jam’, in which several audience members joined the stage and accompanied the musicians playing the drums, electric guitar and synth for a massive blow out of a tune that had all of 24 Kitchen Street moving. As Pope himself stated, ‘you could’ve been watching X Factor tonight or anything, but you’re here’, a choice which I can fairly state was not one which posed a dilemma for any of those gathered. By the end of the show, it’s fair to say that Mutant Vinyl had a pretty damn good welcome back to Liverpool.