Last Thursday, the art felicis crew attended an I OH YOU party at The Toff in Town for Melbourne Music Week, featuring Willow Beats.
I OH YOU are an independent record label that showcase some of Australia’s best indie acts, and the event featured sets from DJs Tomderson, Naminé, and Acolyte. Unfortunately, we were too busy gorging on kebabs in Swanston St to catch the first three acts, but we did get the chance to see electronic duo Willow Beats, the event’s headliners.
Willow Beats attracted a large and loyal crowd. Made up of Narayana Johnson and Kalyani Mumtaz from Murwillumbah in NSW, the uncle and niece pumped out a seriously phenomenal set. One drunkard even opened up Shazam. Good luck trying to get a match at a live show! Props for expressing interest though.
The duo played tunes from their self-titled EP, released in 2012, including ‘From Under the Ground’, a clear crowd favourite, and ‘Grom the Betrayer’ and ‘Franky’ which have more of a sinister and warped sound, and remind me of theme music from fantasy video games. They also played tracks from their latest EP, Alchemy, including ‘Elemental’ and ‘Blue’, which have a slower and more meditative rhythm.
The best way to describe their sound is dreamy and extra-terrestrial. Willow Beats definitely project an out-of-this-world vibe, dripping with nature sounds and a fantastical ambience. Though Kalyani’s vocals are choppy and looped in recordings, her live performance was pure and ethereal, and supported by Narayana’s mixing.
If you missed them at The Toff in Town, or at Strawberry Fields over the weekend, you can check out their upcoming gig dates here. They are also performing at Falls Festival in Lorne if you were lucky enough to score a ticket!
Hometown: Murwillumbah, Australia.
Latest EP: Alchemy, out May 2013.
Sounds like: Purity Ring and Mount Kimbie.
Say what? According to a Creative Drinks interview, Narayana and Kalyani were born into a Hare Krishna community and draw inspiration from the Hare Krishna legends of magical weapons, demons, and monsters.