ODESZA at Oxford Art Factory - acid stag

ODESZA at Oxford Art Factory, January 2015 [Gig Review]

words by Jacqui Wonder

It had been just over six months since I first saw Odesza, warming the stage up for Kele Okereke with BFF Hayden James on a string of Circo Festival sideshows, and one thing was clear as I stumbled into the packed, sold out main room of Oxford Art Factory just two weeks ago – the Seattle duo ain’t no-one’s warm up act anymore.

We missed the smooth, deep house stylings of Brisbane producer Charles Murdoch, arriving only just in time for Odesza to take the stage – the first thing we notice is the palpable anticipation of the crowd, everyone is buzzing – be it from a rhythmic warm up from Murdoch or sheer can’t-stand-still excitement for the upcoming act. Not to disappoint, the duo were captivating from the first opening bars, with grins on their faces as they applied a steel-like focus to every single note (it looked kind of maniacal).

With the full arsenal of In Return at their fingertips, the show is more lush, more diverse and more of a party than their 2014 visit. What hasn’t changed though is the fixated dedication to every single element, with Odesza working overtime to ensure every sound is just so – hard work aside they were certainly having just as good a time as all of us in the room, multiplying the party and dance energy around and putting it back into the set.

Making the most of the OAF stage the lights and animated backdrop are a visual treat but not dealing quite as much impact as you’d hope – with a bigger stage on their next visit maybe we will see the lights, graphics and sound all come together for maximum goodness? None of that dampened anyone’s spirits though, and whilst their own hit tracks like ‘It’s Only’, ‘Bloom’ and ‘Say My Name’ set the crowd off, favourite remixes of the duo’s like their spin on ZHU‘s ‘Faded’ saw the room implode.

They are euphoric, dynamic, colourful and technically brilliant – put Odesza on your must-see list and we’ll keep you posted of when they are coming back down under – judging by their latest Instagram updates, with new Hayden James collabs in tow?

Rating: ★★★★

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