Brighton’s position as the second best UK festival city would be uncontested if Liverpool hadn’t got itself Psyche Fest to go with Sound City. As it is, for now we’re calling it a plucky draw between the two, though that might change after this weekend.
Mutations started last year as DRILL, and though they’ve changed the name and the branding, the focus is still on proper, thought-provoking musicians playing in some of the city’s most characterful venues.
On the Satuday, Willis Earl Beal at 3pm stands out, with his cinematic blues sure to rattle the doorhandles of the little Hope and Ruin. It's a 100-odd person venue. He's got one of the great modern stage presences. Get there.
Later that evening there’s a singer-songwriter double header of just ridiculous quality- Josh T.Pearson and Christopher Owens, one after the other from 20.00 in the All Saints Church. I live in Brighton but I won't be watching these two artists I love in a truly bewitching setting, because I’m going to be in Belgium: the same Belgium that gave us 2 Unlimited and Plastic Bertrand. I'll let you make your own conclusions about my life choices.
On the Sunday, Best Friends will be followed by Ought at Green Door Store from 14.45, by which time you’ll have scaled your hangover and the one in your group who’s booked Monday off will start talking about making a call to Albanian John. Whatever you decide, there’s a load of great stuff over the day- Lightning Bolt at Concorde, John Talabot at Patterns, all sorts. Maybe next year, Liverpool.
Get tickets for Mutations here