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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Owl Eyes and Cameras at the Beach Road Hotel, Bondi


OWL EYES
CAMERAS
SPLIT SECONDS

Beach Road Hotel, 24/08/11

Split Seconds, an unassuming looking bunch of blokes from WA, got the ball rolling with their pedestrian brand of indie-pop. Their songs offered no real edge but were pleasant enough if you like your music to be inoffensive and safe.

Cameras make an epic sound when performing as a three-piece, so with six members on stage the result is incredible. Atop interestingly structured songs, resplendent singer/keyboardist Eleanor Dunlop gazed alluringly out from under her fringe and provided an ethereal vocal which complimented guitarist Fraser Harvey's more direct delivery. In a set comprised of oldies and newies, the woozy atmosphere of the Dunlop-led Polarise and June contrasted with an angular urgency when Harvey took the lead. In final song, Defeatist, Cameras have created an absolute stormer which rocked the life out of the venue. Building slowly under Dunlop's heavenly oohs and aahs into a frenzy of noise as Harvey cried, “I've got a favour to ask, but you've already done so much,” it was an utterly thrilling way to end a superb set. Cameras are certainly one of the Sydney's best bands and, on this evidence, their star will continue to ascend at pace.

“I'm sick,” glitter-faced Brooke Addamo, better known as Owl Eyes (pictured, top), announced. Not as in “fully sick” either – this wasn't a boastful start to her show – but rather the Melbourne artist was actually unwell. Still, backed by a four-piece band, she battled her way through her headline slot which included songs from her new EP, Raiders, while teenage girls in the front row gleefully mimicked her playful dance-moves. With songs like 1+1 and a fairly straightforward cover of Foster The People's Pumped Up Kicks going down well with a busy room, it was a shame that Addamo was ill to the point that she had to draw the set to an abrupt early close. “I'll come back, I promise,” she told her disappointed fans. So, we'll have to wait until next time to see what she can deliver when firing on all cylinders, but there was enough in this shortened cameo to suggest that her daydreamy synthy-disco-alt-pop has legs.

Review By Bobby Townsend. It originally appeared in Sydney's Drum Media


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