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Live Review: Simona Castricum

6 October 2017 | 5:10 pm | Kay Stavrou

"A much-needed reminder to electronica about where it came from."

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Launching an EP in the middle of a national tour is no easy feat - but for Melbourne-based Simona Castricum, it seemed effortless. When she walked on stage, glow-in-the-dark drumsticks in hand, Castricum launched straight into heavy, driving percussion. She needed no banter, no posturing, because her stage presence is commanding, captivating, and her music speaks for itself.

Her powerful soundscapes are testament to the brilliant acts emerging from Melbourne’s queer music scene.

Behind her, a question was projected: “How can architecture hold emotional space?” Enchanting the intimate and atmospheric venue, Howler, Castricum answered. Intricate synth layered over heady beats and yearning vocals transported the crowd, inciting the room to frenzied dancing.

The show was crafted for maximum emotional impact, with each aspect complementing the others perfectly. From three opening acts - DJ Onyx, Other Places and Various Asses - to the set structure, lighting and projections, there was a cohesive flow which allowed for complete immersion in the space.

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The climax of the performance - her latest single Triumph - displayed her versatility as a musician and a performer, with a flawless shift in mood to uplifting melodies. She was joined onstage by Cultra, and their haunting vocal harmonies - “You’ve become much stronger” - resonated through the venue.

An audio-visual marvel, Castricum’s EP launch was a much-needed reminder to electronica about where it came from, and an exciting indicator of where it is headed now.