Sonica, Glasgow’s lovingly leftfield festival of audio-visual art and performance, celebrates its fifth edition with its most varied programme to date, including this absorbing pop-up satellite show in Greenock’s 19th century Tobacco Warehouse.
Tobacco Warehouse Takeover, The Tobacco Warehouse, Greenock ****
The B-listed bond has been used in its time by whisky distillers and to accommodate GIs during World War Two but for one night only it was transformed into a cool – literally and figuratively – cavern of son et lumiere with low lighting in its murky corners, bright, geometric laser patterns cutting through the gloom and a suitably immersive musical bill curated by the Scottish Alternative Music Awards.
Young Fathers associate and self-taught multi-instrumentalist Callum Easter has sonic creativity to spare, as richly demonstrated by his current album, Here or Nowhere. His one-man band set-up was lo-fi – he even triggered his own lightshow, comprising two pound shop strobing spotlights – but greatly impactful.
Easter’s more-ish performance was bookended by throbbing sub-bass but centred on his soulful voice and new favourite instrument, the accordion, which he fed through a range of effects to create a disorientating backdrop for his visceral songs of war and peace. Catch him soon before he switches format, then catch him again.
Luke Sutherland is another charismatic creator with various bands under his belt and a recurring role as touring violinist for Mogwai. His latest outfit, Rev Magnetic, combined the catharsis of a tight rocking five-piece band with a mesmeric maelstrom whipped up from behind an ample bank of effects pedals and Sutherland’s soaring violin piercing the miasma. Fiona Shepherd