Live Review: Stonefield, Sons Of Zoku, Druid Fluids

13 June 2018 | 10:37 am | Fionna Broddesson

"They sexed it up a notch with a sultry version of 'Visions' that wound its way around the room like a lascivious lullaby."

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With new album Far From Earth hot off the press and a residency in LA recently completed, Stonefield wasted no time back on home soil before launching into a nine-date national tour.

Renowned for their authentic, '70s-influenced psych-rock, they mesmerised fans at Jive, with a couple of class local acts invited to join the ride.

Barefoot and fancy-free, Druid Fluids embraced their time on stage, clearly enjoying themselves despite playing to a spartan audience. The five tracks they offered were broad in sound; a reverb-heavy blend of psychedelia, punch and groove with smooth, well-rounded moments and loads of cool effects. At times the tracks seemed almost instrumental, the twangy vocals from Jamie Andrew pushed well back in the mix, adding texture to the layers of music rather than being the prominent feature - the exception to this being the occasional wholehearted "yelp!" down the microphone.

Next up were Sons Of Zoku, who opened with a blissful The Doors-like number that invoked the sense of desert sands and epic road trips. Well at home in the velvet landscape, the dreamlike trance was then swiftly broken up with a rock'n'roll scorcher that got heels tapping and the front rows dancing. By this stage it was safe to say the party had arrived; literally so, as there were birthdays aplenty in the band and audience, which culminated in a big communal Happy Birthday singalong. With tonnes of stage presence and instrumental talents ranging from flute playing to the mastery of 12-string guitar, you could be forgiven for thinking they can do it all. Sons Of Zoku certainly left the punters happy after their full and varied set.

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After kicking back and watching the supports, Stonefield then took to the stage, the very definition of effortless, laid-back cool. Opening with the heavy prog masterpiece Delusion, they barely drew breath before unleashing Far From Earth, a killer title track that was taken next level live. A couple of crowd favourites from the album As Above, So Below followed before they sexed it up a notch with a sultry version of Visions that wound its way around the room like a lascivious lullaby. Further highlights included the instrumental Celestial Spaces and an unrelentingly heavy version of Sister. The night came to its glorious end with an intense rendition of Golden Dream, delivered with an added rawness that befitted it perfectly as the closing number.