Maid Of Stone – Sunday. London-based Southern Rockers NitroVille have been building a growing reputation as one of the best live acts on the circuit, and debuting their new, seven-piece line-up sees them adding visual layers as well as musical.
Now with three guitars and a female backing singer all adding to the mix, founding members Kurt Michael and Tola Lamont have grown ever closer to the style that classic bands like Lynyrd Skynyrd and Molly Hatchett have carved their reputations on, yet giving the whole a very different, homegrown, twist.
There’s a confidence here, born of hours of touring and belief in the material that drives the band, Lamont’s vocals full of grit whilst Michael cranks out the riffs like a well-oiled machine.
Theirs is a sound that conjures up a whiff of gasoline, dry desert heat, and a few gratefully received chugs of cold beer, the audience transported from Kent’s ‘Garden of England’ to the Stars and Stripes of the South.
Louisiana Bone struts and throbs with intent, its soulful heart glistening before Dark Texas takes us on an atmospheric ride through Gothic hinterlands that shouldn’t exist in the Lone Star State but unnervingly do.
The apocalyptic driving rocker Apophis 2029 is fuelled by the triple six-string attack of Michael, Grizzy Rose Lee and Matt Forbes, each providing their own layers to the sound, and Mississippi White Boy glistens with the groove of Paolo Succo’s bass and the drums of Hugo Terva.
The new addition of backing singer Rachael O’Donoghue is another savvy move, her vocal harmonies and tambourine playing perfectly complimenting the force of nature Lamont.
The knock-out one/two punch of Engine Ain’t Stopping and Coming On Strong closes in triumphant style, this heavy-duty boogie played with as much verve and brawling attitude as Molly Hatchett at their Flirtin’ With Disaster peak.
The South (of London) will rise again.
Maid Of Stone Festival 2023 was held over the weekend of 21-23 July 2023. MetalTalk’s Adrian Stonley, Paul Monkhouse and Robert Sutton were reporting from Mote Park.
All Photography: Robert Sutton
Early Bird tickets are available for next year’s festival held over 19-21 July 2024. Tickets are available from here.
All MetalTalk Maid Of Stone 2023 coverage is at https://www.metaltalk.net/tag/maid-of-stone-festival-2023