Astles, Bill Nickson & More @ District, Liverpool 17/08/18

Hidden away in an abandoned warehouse in the ‘Baltic Triangle‘ area of Liverpool‘s rejuvenated docklands is District – a multi-purpose venue which embodies the creative spirit of the triangle. Organised by Jamie Roberts of local band Wild Fruit Art Collective, the venue hosted a free entry ‘rock party’ on Friday night (17th). Joining Jamie on the billing was Astles, Bill Nickson and Mincemeat.

19 year old Daniel Astles is a Liverpool singer-songwriter who goes by his last name. Astles, who recently won the LIMF Academy award at the Sefton Park festival, played a short but captivating set to open the show. Accompanied by violin and cello, he played guitar and demonstrated chilling melodies and strong vocals similar to those of Brit Award winner Ben Howard. His moody and melancholic tracks certainly impressed. He gave a less than positive verdict on Liverpool’s neighbour across the Mersey, Birkenhead, in a new song that gave a taster of what’s to come on his first studio EP, scheduled for release this September.

Next up was Wild Fruit frontman Jamie Roberts, who played a set of solo songs with a new band. Self-described as ‘lo-fi freak folk gloom pop’, Jamie’s musical style is certainly unique and his lyrical content is anything but boring. His solo performance was more stripped back yet not as raw and punky as those with Wild Fruit Art Collective, but he proved himself as a truly talented musician.

You can hear Jamie on Wild Fruit Art Collective’s single ‘Fabric’ below:

Bill Nickson, another solo musician, was next to play. He was joined on stage by Astles, who was on bass this time around. Growing up in a small town on the Wirral, on the other side of the water, Bill compares the isolation from the city to his feeling of isolation in his musical tastes and style. The 23 year old has been writing music and releasing tracks recorded in his bedroom for years but only recently began to play live with the help of a band. He’s now forcing his way into the Liverpool music scene. His brand of folk-infused indie pop and well-written songs went down well with the District crowd.

Bringing the curtain down on a night of fantastic live music was punk band Mincemeat. Very much part of the current local scene, the trio had just last weekend played at neighbouring venue Constellations as part of Strange Collective’s all-dayer. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to stay long enough to give Mincemeat a live review this time but I hope to catch them live soon after listening to their EP released on Bandcamp late last year. It’s a handful of garage punk tunes with fuzzy guitar and echoed vocals that would sound fantastic live. You can listen to Mincemeat’s EP below: