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LIVE REVIEW: Joy Orbison, Andy Mac and Cosmic Boogie@ Archive club night, Leaf Tea Shop, Liverpool 19/3/10

March 27, 2010

Despite being a rather maudlin number, Roy Orbison offers some hope in his hit record ‘Only The Lonely’, singing of the possibility of ‘Maybe tomorrow/ A new romance’.

The perfume of impending romance hangs over Leaf, the venue for tonight’s gig. Billowing veils flutter as me and my mate walk in to check out what’s going on. Having visited Leaf during the day during its Tea Shop guise (and enjoyed a very tasty salad), I was unsure as to whether or not it would be able to transform into a club.

My doubts were immediately quashed. Green lasers danced about. Hand designed posters adorned the walls advertising both Archive and Joy Orbison. The lighting of the venue was also cool, understated, much like the man who would soon be headlining tonight’s proceedings.

Cosmic Boogie kicked things off with a soulful, funky set. It sounded like the kind of thing Diana Ross would get ready to before heading off to Studio 54 (and kissing MJ goodnight). I thought I recognised the bassline from Lucy Pearl’s ‘Don’t Mess With My Man’, but I could have been in a bit of a funk freakout. It seemed like this was Northern Soul Version 2.0, streamlined, bassy rhythms for 2010. It would also sound great on the terrace at Space.

Andy Mac then took to the decks with a higher tempo, housier vibe to get the crowd pumped for Joy. The crowd were starting to take their hands out of their pockets, off their iPhones and getting ready to get movin’. Cosmic Boogie took to the mike to amp it up a notch. I was secretly wanting David Rodigan to emerge from behind the curtain for a bit of MCing action. Maybe next time eh lads haha!

Joy came onstage and immediately studiously hovered over the Pioneer decks. The compact, tight set was a monochrome journey through a number of different genres. Bmore, dubstep, d’n’b, disco, house….. This man clearly has an extensive musical knowledge. Beat matching was faultless and he managed to work the crowd excellently, knowing when to throw in the bangers and when to let the steamed-up studos pop out for a cheeky fag. There were a couple of piano lines from the set that are still tickling me now and I remember going nuts to a good bit of vocoder. I also have a note in my phone saying he dropped what sounded like a Prince tune about cherries?! After googling, it seems it could have been Prince’s ‘Cherry, Cherry’, a song about a lover’s suicide. A rather melancholy reference for a joyful man if so. But I left Leaf with a big grin on my face. Joy makes you smile where Roy made you cry.

Many thanks to all the staff at Leaf. Everyone was extremely hospitable and I will certainly be back soon!

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