James Yuill plays Liverpool Music Week free for all

Well there might be no such thing as a free lunch, but a free gig is different. James Yuill played Mojo as part of Liverpool Music Week's free gig bonanza.

The folktronica star finally made it to the stage after rewiring the whole place. He was the epitome of the modern musician: geeky, gorky, and looked more like an IT expert then a musical maestro.

However, his unique brand of folk infused electronica was certainly what everyone needed to pump up a rainy Monday night in Liverpool. ‘On Your Own’ and ‘First In Line’ filled the venue with a sense of giddy anticipation.

Penultimate act Silver Columns took to the stage with their mix of unfeasibly high vocals and techno tunage. Disaster stuck when it became apparent that they’d misplaced  their… tambourine, which strangely lead to a ten-minute break in the set.

When it was located, mid-way through the song, it made little difference to the sound. The two Jimmy Somerville sound-a-likes also caused a stir by vaulting off stage and meandering through the crowd with a drum and a megaphone.

Earlier in the evening, local heroes Capac continued the theme of merging modern technology with good old fashioned guitar strings. The highlights of their set being ‘See The Young’ and ‘Circle,Yes’, an achingly beautiful piece of music.  

Second on the line-up, DNA Orchestra took to the stage, sans shoes. Mainly a one woman show, with backing-guy-on-laptop, her Kate Bush/Portishead style eerie vocals worked well on ‘Appetite’ whilst many of the songs had an almost middle-eastern flavour to the beats. Add to that the elaborate dancing of the lead singer and the set felt like performance art.

Magic Youth Orchestra opened the packed bill in this unique venue. It was their first gig as a unit and the haunting melodies juxtaposed with thumping beats pretty much set the musical tone of the evening.

The crowds built slowly throughout the evening and in the end it was very busy, especially for a Monday night. It was clear many had come specifically to see the bands.

Friends, family and aficionados made up a large part of the crowd. Mind you, you are hardly likely to stumble across the Mojo venue unless you are looking for it. But given the comfortable booths, the long open bar, the array of beverages and the quality of tunes it’s clearly somewhere you should look for.

The free gigs continue tonight (Tuesday) as part of Liverpool Music Week 2010, with Field Music again at Mojo. Alternatively The Drums are playing the O2 Academy.