Tonight (Thursday), the Washington hosts its Psych Out event – an evening of psychedelic music from across Sheffield and beyond. This is the first of what will be a regular instalment at the Washington and is the brainchild of Josh Batterley, Matt Shimwell and Nick Booth.
Nick Booth says: “The three of us have worked together on numerous projects, past and present, and through our mutual enjoyment of the burgeoning neo-psych scene in the UK and abroad it became apparent that we should put our heads together and launch a night in Sheffield which psych bands and fans alike could call home.”
But while most of us think of Haight Ashbury, circa ’67 when the word ‘psychedelia’ crops up, Booth insists that ‘new psych’ is a different beast altogether.
“We connect both to the history of psychedelia and the current wave. It’s important, we feel, to recognise early bands and the many faces of psychedelia. However, the modern movement has such freedom to explore that it’s possible to have such varied bands as The Black Angels, Suuns and Tame Impala operating within the same spectrum, appealing to the same audiences without sounding the same.”
Such was the belief in ‘experiencing’ a gig, rather than merely ‘attending’ one, in the late 60s and early 70s that one major psychedelic band would even spike the audience’s drinks with LSD to enhance their experience at the show.
Psych Out’s organisers will not be spiking drinks, but they will be boosting the psychedelic atmosphere in their own – legal – way.
“We’re offering free absinthe for tonight’s launch night to pay homage to that. That’s while stocks last though!”
On Psych Out’s bill are Death Rays Of Ardilla and Baba Nag, followed by music and visuals until 2am.