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Gig ReviewsReviews

[Review] Overmono @ Northcote Theatre, Melbourne 17/03/2023

Fresh off their amazing performance at Pitch Music and Arts Festival in Victoria’s Grampian plains, Welch electronic duo Overmono debuted in Naarm/Melbourne last night at Northcote Theatre. Brothers Tom and Ed Russell came together as Overmono in 2015, dropping their first EP under the name in 2016. With a stream of hit singles and EPs under their belt, the duo is primed to drop their first full-length album this may with Good Lies.

As it was my first time visiting the Northcote Theatre, I was keen to check out the venue and see what it had to offer. Featuring two accessible levels with a bar on each floor and a balcony watching over High Street, the theatre was like an old town hall refurbished like a giant nightclub suitable for the parties of the future. I’m keen to return for another gig as it definitely had a vibe I could get behind.

Opening for Overmono was Naarm based producer Kia combined shades of IDM, techno and trance, weaving together musical narratives that have granted them recognition from local and international labels. Lining up shows in Amsterdam, Norway and more later in the year, Kia is a name to be watched in the electronic scene, even with just a single track released on Spotify.

Next, we were blessed with the sounds and rhythms of Mparntwe/Alice Springs producer RONA. Featuring soundscapes that blend the background of country and place with emotionally packed synth melodies reminiscent of desert life mixed with club euphoria, RONA mixed in a good dose of drum and bass rhythm for good measure to get the energy flowing and the crowd moving.

Hitting the stage later in the evening, Overmono delivered a packed set of non-stop ragers. Combining intimate vocal samples, Kid-A-esque pad synths and booming two-step beats, the duo mixed between older material and key new album tracks with a focus on continuity. A track would slowly morph into another, with the vocal chop slowly coming into focus from the next track, and the audience screaming in delight in response. The push and pull created by the build towards catharsis acted as a brilliant narrative for the hour and a half DJ set.

The Welsh duo clearly have a love for dogs, with Dobermans being a staple of their new album art and tour imagery. Glitched out visuals of the dogs cuddling, fighting and running glowed on screen behind the DJs, with their slow-motion running acting as a counter to the fast grooves moving our feet.

Favourite tracks included Bby, Is U, So U Know, Bone Mics and their fantastic remix of For Those I Love’s anthem I Have a Love. Dancing to Overmono is a blissful feeling, like a rave on a cool summer night where the vibe is just right, and the company is perfect.

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[Review] Beach Bunny @ Croxton Hotel, Melbourne 17/03/2023

On Friday night, I was blessed to finally catch American indie rock band Beach Bunny live. Formed in 2015 in Chicago, Illinois and led by Lili Trifilio, Beach Bunny rose to fame in 2020 for their viral Tik Tok hit Cloud 9. But more than just a one hit wonder though, the band produced a set of sing-along emo beach-pop rock n’ roll with fantastic stage presence.

Opening for them were Brisbane natives VOIID. Reminiscent of classic alt-rock and grunge bands like Hole and L7, VOIID rocked almost too hard for an opening band. Using the classic light and dark, soft and heavy contrast of their forbearers, they sang songs of anti-depressant ecstasy in Lexapro, and heaven in a green room in Hell. Lead singer Anji Greenwood weaves tales of love, hate and joy with her all-femme bandmates. High energy was present the whole set. I can’t wait to see what their debut album will look like when it finally drops.

Taking the stage to a packed bandroom filled with teens and twenty-somethings, Beach Bunny opened with their most recent single, 2022’s Weeds, off their new album Emotional Creature. Featuring fun pop-rock riffs and singalong moments galore, the set was packed with highlights.

The mega hit Prom Queen acted as a bridging point of the set, with singer Lili Trifilio announcing afterward that “now we’re going to play some more emo ones, if that’s okay” from there we jammed through fantastic album cuts like Love Sick, Oxygen and my favourite track April, before tearing back into the bangers again.

Rounding off the set with the hits of Sports, Nice Guys and the smash hit Cloud 9, which had the best singalong of the whole night, the show was everything from raw teen angst to forgiveness and euphoria. “When he loves me, I feel like I’m floating.”

With a fantastic encore of the awesome two-pronged medley track Painkiller, featuring an amazing change-up in the second wind of the song, Beach Bunny made for a great live show and a fantastic night out of singing, dancing and moshing.

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