Gig Reviews

Stonefield – Newtown Social Club, Sydney 09/07/16

Fresh off an international tour, the Stonefield sisters dropped in to Sydney’s Newtown Social Club on Friday night for the second pit-stop on their Australian Strangers Tour.

On an otherwise dreary start to the weekend, the Victoria girls drew a mixed crowd of millennials and Gen X-ers basking in a modern take on 70’s-style rock.

Before the ladies hit the stage, the night kicked off with Queensland quartet Pop Cult and the indie rock stylings of Verge Collection. While both of their playful indie pop well and truly warmed up the show, it was Verge Collection’s rockin’ cover of Destiny Child’s Say My Name that really stole the guest slot.

Opening with a quick, sultry sample of The Doors’ Break On Through (To The Other Side), the Stonefield sirens didn’t waste any time slamming into their Hendrix-inspired Black Water Rising. In true Stonefield form, the girls were a psychedelic dream of long hair, bell bottoms and crushed velvet.

Throttling through the set, the sorority quickly ticked off tunes including the mellow Golden Dream and tour title track Strangers. Undeniable favourites included bangers from their self-titled 2013 album such as Put Your Curse On Me (with the gospel singers swapped out for drunken Newtown patrons) and Love You Deserve.

Rather than bringing in their usual live fill-in, lead vocalist and drummer Amy showed off her multitasking skills on the mic and percussion for the entire set. But even from behind the drums and out of centre focus, the frontwoman was able to command the attention of the room with the power of THAT voice.

Throughout the set, all four girls seemed genuinely humbled by the warm welcome from the crowd and spoke about the simple process involved in recording their latest album.

“We went back to our parents’ house and would just record in the shed. Then we’d all come inside and eat avocado on Cruskits around the kitchen table. As you can tell, we’re very rock and roll,” laughed Amy.

Speaking of the new album, Stonefield also gave us a sneak peek of some tunes from As Above, So Below (due out 15 July). The two or three tracks they played proved that their sound has matured since the release of their debut album in 2013. They’ve swapped out the massive blues guitar riffs and shredding solos for mellow harmonies and plucking arpeggios for a more relaxed psych-rock sound. Tracks like Changes and the heavily instrumental Midnight still take you back in time but without the vibe that you’re listening to a Led Zeppelin or Fleetwood Mac tribute band.

Well, not completely. Closing out the night with Sister and a stellar cover of Whole Lotta Love, the girls couldn’t leave the set without a little toast to their inspirations. Despite one jerk who had nothing to remark but “how hot the lead singer is”, Stonefield’s stint at the Newtown Social Club has proven, yet again, that these sisters can rock.

Gallery: Stonefield – Newtown Social Club, Sydney 2016 / Images Via Joelle Miller

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