Anna Of The North & Leisure Suite @ Northcote Social Club (24/08/17)

It’s always the most exciting period to see an act perform when they’re on the verge of releasing an album. It’s even more exciting when they’re on their first headline tour in Australia. That’s the exact position electro-pop duo Anna Of The North were in when they converged on a sold-out Northcote Social Club last Thursday night. The half-Norwegian, half-New Zealand band certainly delivered on the anticipation of their forthcoming debut album and Australian tour.

Anna Of The North consists of Norway’s Anna Lotterud and New Zealand’s Brady Daniell-Smith. The pair ironically met in Melbourne just a few years ago, making this show even more special. Joining Anna Of The North on both legs of the double-date tour was another electro-pop duo, Melbourne’s own Leisure Suite. A dreamy line-up to say the least.

Being largely unfamiliar to Leisure Suite was no barrier for the enjoyment of their set. Made up of Bridgette Le and Mitchell Wood, the pair superbly showcased their intoxicating soundscape. Bridgette’s delightfully comforting vocals garnered the developing audience, who were immediately entranced upon arrival. Regularly, the opening act fill in the time prior to the main show, but it was definitely not the case with Leisure Suite. Anyone who appeared early were pleasantly surprised with the quality of which Leisure Suite performed.

Now, Anna Of The North faced the unexpected hurdle of taking the night up a gear. Armoured with a plethora of new songs, such as the just released ‘Fire’, and modern classics like ‘The Dreamer’, Anna did just that. Beginning with 2016 hit ‘Baby’, and continuing through the duo’s building synth-pop discography, it was like partying at an ‘80s-themed bar. A special moment occurred throughout the mid-section of the set when Anna unveiled a pair of unreleased tracks. Although nobody in the room had heard the exclusive cuts before, there was no disrupting the audience’s groove.

Although Brady’s multi-tasking behind the synths and percussive tools was a particular highlight, Anna stole the show. Her voice sounded identical to the recorded version and she owned the stage like it was her own, interacting with diehard fans at the same time. When Anna unleashed the clear crowd favourite, ‘The Dreamer’, the entire band-room recited each word. It was without a doubt the highlight of the evening.

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