ODESZA: In Return to U Street

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Photo Credit: Author

U Street Music Hall is by far my favorite venue in DC; It’s large enough to attract known artists as well as those on the rise. The hall is perfect for dancing to the electronic stylings of ODESZA, an electronic duo from Seattle comprised of Harrison Mills (aka CatacombKid) and Clayton Knight (aka BeachesBeaches), who combine to make easy going, whimsical chillwave.

Odesza Bronson Selling

Photo Credit: Bronson Selling

ODESZA was so exciting to watch. Mills and Knight play with their backs towards each other while keeping completely in synch. They bobbed to the music, dancing along with the crowd- I don’t remember a moment when I wasn’t dancing. The show was upbeat and dreamlike, and the music made bodies move through a euphoric state. They played tracks off both Summer’s Gone (2012) and In Return (2014). Their set also included their popular remixes of Zhu’s “Faded” and Pretty Lights’ “Lost And Found”. Their newest album, In Return, shows just how mature Mills and Knight have grown since their debut. Their new music cannot be described as anything but bedroom beats. “It’s Only”, which features the sensual vocals of Zyra, leaves goosebumps as its bells ripple through your body. The tonality and delicate structure of their songs is warm and enchanting. Their music is very melodic and tranquil sounding almost futuristic.

 

As they stood in front of vibrant graphics ranging from cool blues and purples to tender reds and oranges, the crowd swayed, letting the music overwhelm their senses. And that’s why U Street is such an underrated venue. That show filled a room (twice in one night, might I add) with people who had the sole intention of going and dancing for the hour and a half set.

 

In a time when EDM focused on bass heavy tracks, ODESZA’s organic, mystifying sound was a breath of fresh air.

 

By the way, their website offers a free download of “Summer’s Gone”.

-Jordan Farley

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