Photo: kmih @ FasterLouder. Gallery here.
Entering the Northcote Social Club was warming in more ways than one on this icy Wednesday evening. Relief from the cold as well as the immediate cosiness one feels when seeing a large group of people huddled cross-legged on the floor like primary school kids never fails to warm the heart.
Arriving just in time for I’lls, we selected a space and settled in for a much-anticipated performance. I’lls are a young group of lads who have impressed me once before as the support act for Chet Faker at his EP launches at the Toff. A well-balanced combination of live instrumentation and seemingly complicated electronics and loops, I’lls provide a solid set of Radiohead-influenced tunes to truly bliss out the crowd . Playing songs from their EP Thread, I’lls provide the perfect preparatory performance for Sydney-sider Oliver Tank.
Taking on Northcote Social Club solo, Oliver Tank is set centre stage with projections of the solar system, the earth and other various images playing over him and onto the back of the stage. Captivating the audience immediately, Tank charms the crowd with his humbleness but lets his incredible music make the lasting impression. Playing tracks from his EP Dreams, Oliver’s songs are in a seemingly constant process of building and rebuilding, reaching crescendos but not shying away from near silence either. The subtle auto-tune effect with the raw quality of Oliver’s voice works incredibly well and the choice of samples was oh so tasty. Of course fitting in his inspired cover of Snoop Dogg’s Beautiful but taking it a whole new level by adding in Drop It Like It’s Hot, Oliver Tank worked the crowd to his absolute advantage. Sticking around after the show to meet and greet the more avid fans, I don’t doubt the swoon frequency increased by the second.
All in all, a thoroughly enjoyable way to spend a Wednesday evening. Both I’lls and Oliver Tank are fantastic examples of the quality of the more electronically persuaded music in Australia right now. I look forward to catching both of these acts again sooooon!