Zola Jesus, Light Asylum @ The Toff In Town
It was the logical conclusion to the night. Closing out her encore, Nika Roza Danilova bounded across the Toff stage like an entrapped beast – pinballing from wall to wall without a falter in that incredible voice. The Toff In Town was too small for Zola Jesus tonight.
New York duo Light Asylum were relentless, stunning the packed Toff into submission. Euphorically loud, vocalist Shannon Funchess and Bruno Coviello provided an astounding display of harrowing synthpop, with Funchess's incredible voice providing a captivating symbiosis with the machinegun assault of synth beats.
In comparison, the night's headliner was relatively quiet. Stretching beyond purely synthesised instrumentation, Zola Jesus's live band setting didn't quite pack the punch of Light Asylum – the intimate surrounds inhibiting the band's propensity to soar. There were stages throughout the performance where Danilova disappeared underneath the hedge of frontline crowd members, then going on to perform full songs perched aloft on a stage monitor. Zola Jesus's eclectic back catalogue was threaded together in a coherent manner, managing a stark dynamic between intense instrumentation and Danilova's majestic vocals.
Light Asylum ruled in the compact setting, Zola Jesus, however, deserved a more theatrical environment.
BY LACHLAN KANONIUK
LOVED: Light Asylum busting out Dark Allies was mindblowing.
HATED: Forces being on too early, which tempted me to write about missing a support act for the first time ever. Also I think this was the first time this year I went more than a fortnight without seeing Forces. I really like Forces.