Sharing their name with a New Jersey hamburger restaurant, Northern Californian five-piece White Manna have been steadily carving out an online presence of their own over the past five years. Armed with a sound that blends together elements of space and garage rock with psychedelia, drone and a touch of doom, they’ve frequently been likened to what would happen if you merged bands like The Stooges and MC5 with Hawkwind. With four LPs under their belt there’s plenty of material to sample before Liverpool Psych Fest arrives at the end of September.

But if you’re looking for somewhere to start, you could do a lot worse than their blistering 2014 live album ‘Live Frequencies’ (available below or via their Bandcamp page). In the first of our series of interviews with members of the Liverpool Psych Fest congregation, we spoke to White Manna vocalist and guitarist David Johnson about their upcoming appearance at the festival.

How would you describe your music?

Red with black and white flashes.

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Who or what have been the biggest influences on your sound?

Too many to list, but perhaps: Miles Davis, MC5, Gene Clark, Robert Anton Wilson.

What made you want to play at Liverpool Psych Fest and will this be your first time?

This will be our second time playing Liverpool Psych Fest. We had a great time, and we’re excited to return.

How well do you know Liverpool and what’s your favourite thing about the city?

I don’t know Liverpool very well, but I look forward to visiting St. James’ Cemetery.

Indoor festivals have been growing in popularity in recent years, have you played at many of them and how do they compare to outdoor events?

We’ve played both indoor and outdoor festivals. They are both fun to play and to attend, but watch out for lightning.

What’s your favourite festival memory? 

Watching Rollins Band at the first Lollapalooza but I was too high to hear the music, complete silence.

Have you ever dabbled in psychedelics? If so, how would you describe your experience?

LSD saved my life.

Apart from yourselves, who would you recommend people see at Liverpool Psych Fest?

I’m looking forward to seeing Träd Gräs Och Stenar, Endless Boogie, Witch, Sex Swing, Loop, and Once and Future Band.

Why should festival goers take time out to come and see you play? What can they expect from your live set?

We have many new songs and new jams. It’s gonna be a real hoot!

The sixth edition of Liverpool Psych Fest will take place at Camp & Furnace on 22nd and 23rd of September. Check out our review of last year’s festival here. For more details about this year’s event head over to www.LiverpoolPsychFest.com. Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased here.

 

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