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Review: Overmono @ O2 Academy

With the exception of festivals, electronic music sets tend to feel reserved for the early AMs – so when Overmono came to the stage at the O2 at 9PM it was a refreshing change to the late nights electronic music usually entail.

By Laila Shah, Third Year Politics & International Relations

This was my third time going to see Overmono. The first time was at Boomtown last year and to be honest I hadn’t really heard of them - but my mates assured me that they were worth the squish. And they were. Their fuzzy, fusion, futuristic style of dance music immediately had me hooked.

The second time was during my year abroad at, of all places, the Gobi stage at Coachella. This time it was me doing the convincing, promising my Yank friends, whose only experience of UK electronic music was when I was on aux for pres, that – okay you might not Love them, but we’ll have a good time. I had high hopes for their debut Coachella set, but unfortunately for me they fell a little flat. Maybe it was the fatigue of the desert heat, or the lacklustre American crowds… whatever it was, it made for my second Overmono experience to be pretty forgettable.

But then came my chance to see them at their own show, as part of their international tour following the release of their newest album Good Lies. On the 12th of October Tom and Ed Russell played to the O2 Academy in Bristol. And this time they did not disappoint.

Their low-key stage presence left their dynamic music and visuals to do the talking. Simultaneously melodic and abrasive, their set opened with 'Feelings Plain', the first song of their latest album. Its repetitive, hypnotic lyricism, combined with digital synth elements that massaged your brain, prepared you for the spiritual journey their set became.

Big bangers such as 'Freedom 2; featuring Kwengface and Joy Orbison, 'Cold Blooded' and 'Turn the Page' by The Streets were blended seamlessly with dreamy interludes. The latter was transformed by the duo from a rather mild classic Streets song into a sonic masterpiece that had the crowd chanting like football hooligans to the iconic “Da Da Da Da Da Da, Du Du Du” beat as the rest of the song fell away, before finally descending into the drop. Behind them on the LED screens, graphically playful videos of Overmono’s signature motif, the Doberman played, designed by videographer Rollo Jackson.

From start to finish Overmono delivered a seamless set that kept the crowd fully locked in. But I’d say the highest peak of the night was when they played their 2020 remix of the song, 'I Have a Love' by Irish artist For Those I Love. We were lucky enough to have him join Overmono on stage in a live rendition that electrified the audience.

For Those I Love’s captivating Irish voice carried his spoken word across the venue, passion building in tandem with the song. Screaming “Bristol, get the f*** up, who wants it – feel the love all around you” to a crowd jumping in harmony, many a-jaw-a-swinging, birthed a collective euphoric experience. “I can feel it in my pores!” someone shouted. I don’t think Overmono live can be summed up better than that.

Featured Image: XL Recordings

Have you seen Overmono live?