After a number of years in the shadows, Art vs Science are touring the country once again to promote their recently released Create/Destroy EP. On Thursday night, they played an energetic set to a sold out crowd at The Corner Hotel in Melbourne.

As I arrived, the barrier was already lined with fans and a sufficient crowd had filled the room. Sydney beat maker Kilter, who has previously supported the likes of Elizabeth Rose and The Klaxons, was the support act for the evening. He played a blend of original mixes as well as remixing a number of popular artists including Snakadaktal, with the steel drums featuring predominantly throughout his tracks. Despite being relatively new to creating electronic music, he demonstrated an ability to create mixes that are underlined with beats that you can’t resist moving to, while producing something fresh and unique in a genre of music that is often difficult to find an individual style in. As Kilter entered into his last song ‘Shadow Boxer’, you could sense the crowd’s anticipation for the headlining act as people started pushing forward towards the stage.

Not a minute late, the curtain opened to reveal all three members of Art vs Science in their places, wearing orange and pink full-bodied suits. They launched immediately into their new single ‘Create/Destroy’ which received a massive roar of excitement and had people moving straight away. They continued to weave their new material in between older songs from their debut album The Experiment. Through this weaving process, you could recognise the difference in sound between the new and old songs, with the boys experimenting more with the electronics and the newer songs being heavier in style, both with the underlining bass lines and percussion.

Although the hyper-energetic atmosphere was engulfing the crowd from the first beat, it wasn’t until half-way through the set that the boys really amped it up and turned the room into a rave. ‘Creatures of the Night’ in particular turned the room into a dancing frenzy. Crowd favourite ‘Magic Fountain’ electrified the room, with everyone jumping and shouting along. ‘Parlez-Vous Francais?’ also went off, with Dan McNamee taking delight in demonstrating his guitar skills mid-way through, which appears to have become a signature of his during the live version of this song. Jim Finn took a lead, demonstrating his great vocal ability and was a stand out.

Despite this being the boys’ largest show on this tour, it was a smaller affair than on previous tours and I felt that they were somewhat restrained. They pack a punch with their sound and energy, and had they been in a bigger venue such as The Forum, the intensity and magnitude of the show would have been exceptional. Despite this, the sold out crowd assured Art vs Science that they are loved as much as ever and I am looking forward to seeing them play bigger venues and hopefully some summer festivals later this year, following the release of their forthcoming second album.

Kimberley Salmond


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