THE poetry of Adrian Henri is the inspiration and sparking point for a new lovingly-created 45 minute production.

Horny Handed Tons of Soil is a Unity Theatre Co commission with the national poetry organisation ‘Phased & Confused’.

And it’s a welcome World Premiere for the refurbished Unity which is an ideal venue for this intimate celebration – Adrian himself lived around the corner until his death in 2002.

I knew the great man and miss him and his laughter to this very day so it brings back so many memories when I am reminded of his influential words, style, energy and his legacy.

Lizzie Nunnery, in her own words, joins creative forces with musicians Martin Heslop, Martin Smith and Vidar Norheim.

It does what is promises on the promotional material fusing beat poetry with folk song; electronic composition and brass and percussion.

There are documentary film clips of Liverpool 8 – talking heads all talking from the heart.

Tim Brunsden’s film reminds us of the greenery amid the concrete.

And Laura Lomax’s design offers light and and shade to good almost ghostly effect Well-versed singer-songwriter Lizzie works very hard from the moment she talks to the stage with a terraced house backdrop incorporating a screen.

She is utterly focused while ‘rapping’ away in the blues style of the celebrated Mr H.

The words, at times were slightly over-shadowed by the music - an element which, I am sure, will be addressed when a version of this work goes on tour later this year.

It is quite a sombre piece of theatre - much more than a poem or a collection of lyrical observations set to music.

You can certainly see and hear the passion in Lizzie’s performance.

We see her sifting through soil conveying a sense of loss.

Childhood, pubs, communities are themes woven into this ballad of urban emotions.

I would have liked to have heard some joyful, lighter moments during the set piece.

Whenever I recall Adrian I savour that sense of love of life that characterised his poetry, paintings and sculptures.

‘Thought-provoking’ is a phrase used too often in reviews, but I feel it applies to this interesting work.

As someone who spent a large part of my life in Toxteth, I enjoyed drifting back to my youth carried along by references to Granby Street and Lodge Lane.

Poetry was all around those streets and still is.

I, too, witnessed the changing landscape – yet the area has never lost is spirit.

You cannot demolish dreams.

This is a musical history story that proves The Mersey Sound - born 50 years ago - never went away.

It just moves on and gets louder with each new generation.

Four stars - atmospheric.

The play is on until Saturday, for the box office call 0151 709 4988.