Polexia, Shumi Village, WHXRS: QU A RR Y, Liverpool

Polexia and Shumi Village both make debuts at this SPINE event at QU A RR Y. It was a class night in the north docks.

Billed as the SPINE Noise Dance Party, this was our first visit to QU A RR Y since February 2020 and a chance to hook up with people we haven’t seen for a year and a half.

There’s been work going on behind the scenes at QU A RR Y and it now looks very much like a grown up venue as opposed to the DIY feel it may have had in parts before lockdown started. Post pandemic, it has the potential to carve itself out as an important part of the Liverpool music scene. These maybe early days, but the signs are encouraging after tonight’s showing.

Plus this is the first chance anyone gets to see Polexia airing their recent Immolation EP, we have the ingredients for a promising night. There are few, if any, Liverpool promoters who deal in this kind of industrial / noise / leftfield type of night.

But we know from experience that SPINE have pretty good taste.

Shumi Village kick it all off, with just two boxes of electronics on the stage. One for each of this duo to control.

Slowly at first, which may not be a surprise, but as the noise intensified we were getting a strong Cabaret Voltaire vibe.

Repetitive beats and rhythm, getting gradually louder and harder. It’s hypnotic and just what we have come to expect from SPINE. After about 15 minutes the pace slows to give us a bit of respite. Although not for long. This is the night as advertised and the band succeed in getting hips moving. And then in a cloud of dry ice it slowly wound down. Terrific.

The band later told us this was their first outing as well as the Polexia debut. We look forward to seeing them again.

Shumi Village
Shumi Village
Shumi Village

Polexia are basically playing the Immolation EP, with Johanna prowling around the stage, hitting a guitar, sometimes kneeling, sometimes lying down, sometimes standing, her arm resting on the table that holds Danny’s electronics.

The band have described themselves as spoken word set to noise. We were not prepared for Johanna screaming into the mic as though her life depended on it. Visceral, filled with energy and venom.

The EP tells of the ultimate personal sacrifice – setting yourself on fire. Johanna leaves us in no doubt she’s serious about this tale. They said they wanted the EP to be an immersive experience that would linger long after it had played out. Well, live, this was utterly brilliant. We will not forget this performance for some time. Utterly captivating.

It was a short set, 20 minutes or so. Johanna looked completely spent by the end. There was raw emotion from her spilling out for this debut performance of a stunning piece of work.

Polexia
Polexia
Polexia
Polexia
Polexia
Polexia

Late stand in WHXRS finish off the night with a seriously heavy chunk of industrial noise. No real beats or rhythm here, but arresting effects. Made all the more disconcerting by Ben from Lonesaw doing massively distorted vocals and hitting bits of metal together. Not an easy listen, but then it wasn’t supposed to be. Effective and a demonstration of what SPINE are all about.

WHXRS
WHXRS
WHXRS

This was a fine display. SPINE don’t conform. They will never get a lot of radio play. But there were enough people here tonight to prove this type of event has a place and an audience who love what they do.

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