FestEvol Gardens at Invisible Wind Factory, Liverpool review

With a brand new venue and a stellar line up to match, FestEvol Gardens returns to Liverpool. We went down to check it out and this is what we thought.

Lorna Gray

Last updated: 4th May 2017

Image: PINS by Andy Vonpip

With a new location and an exciting line up to match, FestEvol Gardens hosted an extensive list of bands across an eclectic range of genres and styles. Opening up new and never been seen before rooms and stages of Liverpool's Invisible Wind Factory, the all day event saw some pretty spectacular scenes.    

Kicking off festivities in the garden of the venue were punk four piece Generation. Certainly dressed the part, the earth-shatteringly loud riffs might have come a bit too soon for those who had got down early enough to catch them. Although undeniably talented in their specific brand of somewhat cliched punk, the band failed to rouse the stationary crowd - even after a torso strip from two members. 

In stark contrast, dreamy 80s vibes comes from duo Her's who played to their basement audience. Not only offering chilled out Mac DeMarco style sounds with pop style beats, but also offering comedic elements to their performance with one liners such as, "Thanks for watching, it's our first ever show...only kidding" made the pair even more amiable to those lucky to catch them in this intimate setting. 

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Already hailed within Liverpool as the city's answer to riot grrl, as ever, Pink Kink brought the fun and sass to the main stage of Invisible Wind Factory. Imagine if the Spice Girls could play their own instruments and then imagine if they dabbled in psychedelics - only then do you come close to the live experience that the band offer.

A chaotic crescendo signalled the end of their set, which included members revealing a cabbage, tearing into it with their teeth and throwing it into the crowd. A subtle but take-no-shit message to a certain band due to share the stage later in the day. 

The slight rain couldn't put a damper on the lovely doo-wop style blues of Trudy and the Romance as a sizeable crowd gathered around the outdoor stage to sway slowly to their sound. The looks of disappointment shared among their audience when it was announced that they only had one song left displayed just how much the band were appreciated. 

The dingy basement stage was the perfect setting for new grungy psych outfit on the scene AGP. Distorted vocals that wouldn't have sounded out of place on a Ty Segall track were met with fuzzy guitar and a more structured and polished affair was offered from the rest of the ensemble.  

Dream Wife completely dominated the main stage as their enticingly loud riffs and half-sung, half-shouted feminist-themed lyrics had members of the crowd moving and shouting in reciprocation for the alt-rock trio come quartet. The stage presence of Icelandic vocalist Rkael Mjoll matched the energy of the music as she jumped around and bounced off other members. The chemistry between the band was undeniable and it seemed to emulate into their spectators.   

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PINS are always welcomed within their sister city, and the live versions of their brand new tracks made their already popular performance even more so. Commanding attention on the huge stage space, lead singer Faith managed to make it an intimate affair, as she steps down off the stage to have a dance with her fans.  

A strict one-in, one-out policy had fans of surf trio The Orielles frustrated at the door of the entrance to the basement stage. Upon entering it became evident as to why this band were so popular as the complex but easy going guitar loops joined with sweet sounding vocals had audience members captivated from the first note. 

Brandishing a communist cape and an obscene amount of black make up, lead singer of Doncaster trio The Blinders graces the basement stage. With his fellow member dressed like a Nick Cave impersonator, it was difficult to gauge what this band's sound would be. As soon as the distorted drones of guitar rang out, it became clear that the Blinders took no prisoners for their heavier take on garage, and the crowd lapped up every second of the performance. 

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Nothing could have prepared spectators - or security staff - for the chaos that ensued during the performance of Madrid's own The Parrots. Their reverb drenched sound of jangly guitar met with the sweat and beer drenched fans who couldn't remain motionless in full appreciation for the noise created the ultimate party atmosphere. 

People were climbing and clambering over each other, frontman Diego Garcia came into the crowd himself to join the mayhem and a pipe was even torn off the low basement ceiling. For a finale of togetherness, fellow Heavenly signees The Orielles joined the trio on stage for a dance and singalong, before security could put a stop to it, a full stage invasion saw fans singing and dancing with the Spanish trio. 

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Hats off to the garage heroes who managed to take tired music fans into the early hours of the morning with their unique surf rock sound, rousing the majority into an animalistic state. There also needs to be a nod of acknowledgement to the member of security who took it upon himself to hold the broken pipe up throughout the entirety of the set - wearing a grimace the whole time.   

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