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Live Review: Oliver Tank, hayden Calnin

29 July 2013 | 9:51 am | Nathanael Rice

This gig reminds us why this guy had such a quick rise to prominence. And now we’re impatient for Tank’s upcoming Slow Motion Music EP, due for release later in the year.

You know you are doing something right when you manage to sell out two weeknight shows with no recent releases to promote. The demand to hear Oliver Tank's lush arrangements live is such that more than a few frustrated posts appear on Facebook lamenting the unavailability of tickets. Sorry folks; you snooze, you lose.

When Hayden Calnin takes to the stage it's at once evident why he was chosen to support Matt Corby on his previous tour. Calnin's rough, husky vocals contrast amazingly with his quiet, lovely high notes and he captivates this steadily growing crowd with a strong performance that is not unlike what Corby brings. Playing with “half of the band”, Calnin, his percussionist and keyboardist play songs off the City EP, alongside some new tracks from his forthcoming EP, set for release later this year.

By the time Oliver Tank steps on stage, The Toff is completely packed out with an eager audience ready to be captivated by his unique sound. Releasing his debut EP Dreams, which received rave reviews and created intense internet buzz, in late 2011, Tank has since supported other dream/glitch pop acts such as Active Child, Youth Lagoon and Bonobo in venues all around the globe. His music is spellbinding when listened to while at home in bed with headphones on, so just how it will measure up live remains to be seen. As Tank starts to play however, it's evident that his tunes sound just as amazing live as they do on record. He puts on a mesmerising and atmospheric show, which captures the attention of the entire crowd. His songs are lengthy, most running between five and ten minutes and, while a lesser act may struggle to keep a crowd interested, we're fascinated. The tone and mood of this gig is serious and most remain quiet in between tracks as one song rolls into the next. There isn't much audible excitement from the crowd, except following Last Night I Heard Everything In Slow Motion – arguably the pinnacle of the night. Layer after lush layer of arrangement comes crashing down like heatwaves.

While this is not a gig to get up and dance to, Tank manages to coax some movement from us with his final song of the night Drop It Like It's Beautiful, the fantastic mash-up of Snoop Dogg(ft Pharrell)'s Beautiful and Drop It Like It's Hot over the top of Tank's gorgeous haze of sound. This gig reminds us why this guy had such a quick rise to prominence. And now we're impatient for Tank's upcoming Slow Motion Music EP, due for release later in the year.

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