The Bohemian Groves night at Salford’s Islington Mills on Friday 20th September confirmed that this venue, drawn attention to in the Mancunion’s venue guide, is one of Manchester’s creative hidden treasures. Of course the music played by ‘artist of sound’ Traxx was a huge part to play in the mind-blowing experience of the night but additionally the contemporary, simplistic space and the use of video projections delivered a vibe which is unique to the Manchester music scene. The modest but spacious one room studio space allowed for no distractions from the music and a sense of unity from the crowd. The visuals created and controlled live by KHOM (touring visual engineer) were in his words a “visualization of the music”. Although visually pleasing, they were not there to be an artistic focus but to enhance the musical experience and add to the atmosphere, which they certainly did. This was made possible by the projections working in time with the music, KHOM said “doing it live allows me to follow the music and change the visuals accordingly”.
Islington Mill as a venue and its light shows demonstrated how the visual can affect our experience of music. The music was the main event but the spectacle of the performance transformed what would have just been a great night into a great experience at Islington Mill.