PREVIEW: Liverpool International Festival of Psychedelia 2016

Tomorrow’s sounds then! Yesterday’s tunes now! Peer into the all-seeing kaleidoscope and plunder into a wonder phonic orb of after/future-shock and awe. Or not. Turn out, tune up and drop in.

Here’s 16 entrees for your delectation.  

Day One


These Gallic prog-rockateurs comprise a tri-pronged super-group. These psy-co-pathfinders uncover more detours than Spaghetti Junction on a Bank Holiday weekend undertaking a psychedelic journey that evokes Dante’s Infern-oh-no and an encounter with Cerberus at the gates of Hades. Hell, yes!

Cellar Doors

San Fran-indie-disco dancing triplets who proffer a bunch o’fives white knuckle-dust-busting ride, combining the melodic subterranean-grooves of Clinic with the electro-topian bliss of Giorgio Moroder.

The Doors of Perception are guarded by the fretwork of Robbie ‘Blitz’ Krieger so prise open the pineal portal to these psychonauts and crosses, undertake the crucifixion-transfixion and embrace redemption.

Mixed blissings await true seers.

Déjà Vega 

Spearheading the ‘Winsford Sound’, one of the sonic-boom-towns in the hinterzones of consciousness are Déjà Vega. You think you’ve seen and heard them before? Think and look again. More pedal power than Bradley ‘Call me Sir’ Wiggins, more feedback than Points of View. Chakra, chakra, can.

This trippy trio are epoch marks on the face of manufractured reality; an aural assault and battery. SUBMIT.


Residing in the UK’s Londontown, this laconic, languid and lysergic melting pot of culture-vultures can rapidly switch to a spot of tropicalia fornication before progressing into a second (Hawk)wind of rabbit-hole chasing mayhem.

My advice? Flaming-OD on these mellow fellows.


These Urals based metro-gnoomic underground dwelling cosmic-onauts deploy Neu!-Can-do vibes with their own defined ‘stargaze’ sound. The result? Meditative mediations of meaning and mystery, sudden Russian blood to the head. Your own Faustian pact awaits.

One stellar of a trip. Czar, man, feel the noise.


Ex-Pipette Gwenoo unveiled her concept album Y Dydd Olaf (The Last Day) based on Owain Owain’s cult Welsh sci-fi dys-tome to resounding success in 2015. Anything goes when it comes to imagination-creation-reaction-miscegenation. Close your eyes, hold your breath and submerge into a nether-world of fantasy and Rumsfeldian ‘unknown-known-unknowns’.

Cwm on feel the valley noise.

La Luz

Surf rocking girl quartet La Luz bring the sands of time and the ocean’s soundwaves to proceedings. These practitioners of the neuron-rons echo-voke forward thinkers and doers The Ventures allied to Link Wray’s menacing ambience with the insouciance of the Shangri Las. Sleepwalking never seemed so appealing.

Wipe out your preconceptions and get ready to rumble. See the light, be drawn to it and be (s)moth(ered).

Lorelle meets the Obsolete

Endorsed by Henry Rollins (sticking THAT neck out) and Ty ‘Thee Oh’ Segall and produced by Spaceman 3er Sonic Boom these Mexi-cans feed the y and z into ‘woozy’; you’re the ‘woo’, you. Effortlessly and effervescently dispensing the songs your Mother distort you, these are mindscapes to escape to, psychic canyons of controlled chaos. You’re safe now.

Day Too

Baba Naga

These voodoo-hoodoo shamen move all mountains leaving humanity dazed and confused. Via the channels of reverbalising elongated Eastern riffs emanate along with esoteric drone-omming creating an air of clarity and rebirth. Spiritual-virtual-residual: the bold axes of love.

Purple deep on a dark Saturday, heavy rocks are so lightly thrown.

Cavern of Anti-Matter

Ex-McCarthy and Stereolab’s Emperor Tomato Ketchup Tim Gane continues his lifelong quest to communicate and educate through bleeps, bloops and drones, all the better for those close encounters of the third eye kind. Effectively at that.

Motorik, kosmische, weird shit, just don’t call it ‘Krautrock’, ja?


Globe bestriding and sphere-digesting antics from the troupe that goes by the name of Ear Theater, or is it? If the world’s a stage then this is Code Red, the performance of an end of a life(time). The final curtain call of am-drambience crashes to the floor. Encore.

Sonic architecture don’t come sturdier then this, solid scaffold-sculpture built to last.

Flowers must die

There’s Nordicking about with these purveyors of Scandi-struction psalms. Worshipping at the Ash Ra Temple has reaped dividends in the saga-stakes, superlative space-jam-sandwiches that ooze the blues and drip-drip the trip-trip.

Building blocks of noise are erected, the ego is dissected, the id resurrected. (W)hole again.

The Hanging Stars

Shimmering and glimmering, these celestial bodies drape themselves over your being with a harmonious blanket, a So-Cal(edonian) swoon-around that betrays these troubled times and climes. There’s no Teenage Fannying about for these Shack-attackers. Feed your Michael Head, pill-poppers.

The Moonlandingz

Armstrong, Aldrin, Apollo mission (creep), all bunk. James Brolin called it in Capricorn One; boldly gone? Sheer lunar, see. This ‘fictional’ ensemble exude mystery and intrigue prompting accusations of MK Ultra-violence and covert occultism. The hidden are ridden. Arise the natural heirs to fifth generation rock and rollers and (ever)pioneering retro-futurists Sigue Sigue Sputnik.


The Oscillation

Having taken a chomp from the Silver Apple(s) this collective have acquired the fruits of all knowledge, the wares of worldly wisdom. Edenic electrobeating hearts pulsate and sonar plexuses ululate; VIBRATE! CALIBRATE! CONGREGATE!

No organ malfunctions here, only 20/20 (super)vision and free-masonic ESP. Be illuminated.

Wooden Indian Burial Ground

Portland (top o’the)) billers WIBG epitomise jingle-jangle fuzz-rock, dissonance and resonance are their forte. Thematically addressing night visions, existential identity crises and wistful recollections a la the post-Modern Lovers, baby these are rich men.

Swirling wurlitzers act as background sound to the thrum-drum-hum of orchestrated orchestration. Rotate and spin, the only way to win.

Dr. Kemper Boyd