Stootsie, Gig Review. The Cavern, Liverpool. International Pop Overthrow 2017.

Liverpool Sound and Vision Rating * * * *

Arguably one of the points of life is too feel the words of another culture and take them on board, to live, if possible, in the realms of their thoughts and how they themselves translate their feelings into your own peculiar language; it is the point of life, it is at the heart, soul and ethos of the International Pop Overthrow and one carried with great justification by the Austrian musician Stootsie.

The Saturday afternoon inside The Cavern is one where the streets of the city seem to pour in, the space to attend the popular week of music always seems to congest and thrive as the hopeful May heat takes on a new level of exasperation and the song takes on an innovative way of being listened too and admired.

The Salzburg musician is a favourite of the I.P.O. and has no issue facing a Liverpool audience intent on revelling in the fresh and exciting, the quirky and the cool delicious, for Stootsie the pleasure seems simple, a choice of the captivating music that is steeped in the country of his birth and its appeal and the mix of the power pop that he so obviously loves, a twin heritage if you will, one that has the hallmarks in the feel of the operatic and not out of place amongst the cobbled streets of Vienna and one that typifies a great night out in the Liverpool acoustic scene.

It is in the dialect, the words delivered in a thought process which beguiles, the welcome when someone sings and you can hear their true feeling shaking loose and no matter the language, no matter the apparent communication, if they sing and they smile, if they guide and teach rather than lead and demand, then their song is always worth listening to.

The young Austrian took command of the language with great ease, taking hold of the set with a guitar and a sense of purpose to entertain and thrill, this was moment of great hurrah, of being able to hear and enjoy a culture with no prejudice to be found or the sneering of those whose vision is restricted to their own narrow field of experience. The songs Running Around, Roses, Never Run Alone, Generation Love, Everybody Loves You and One Life were delivered with sentiment, meaning and that courageous, often elusive, smile and one that never wavered, never crumbled as the Saturday of the I.P.O. took on its own humbling mystique.

A wonderful set by Stootsie, a rather magical appearance at this year’s I.P.O.

Ian D. Hall