The first mini-festival of the year for me saw me descend upon my favourite venue The 1865 in Southampton for Nozlite.
Now Nozlite is the baby brother of Nozfest, which is held in the same venue a few months later with many more bands. Both are the brainchild of Jodie Harris, a young promoter who has followed her dream to bring new music to the masses not only through her Nozfest/Nozlite events but also by promoting and putting on some of the best young bands on the scene right now all in and around Southampton.
Tonight would see four wonderful bands, each bringing their own unique rock n roll enthused sets to the lucky people in attendance.
First up were Bournemouth based Skinny Knowledge, who are a band I have known about for a few years now and reviewed the debut album ‘Don’t Turn Out The Lights, but this was to be my first time catching them live. Well, I am so glad I did, because they put on a wonderful adrenaline-fueled performance to kick off the evening in fine style. The band is built around its creator and lead singer/guitarist Andy L. Smooth, whose fabulous vocals and energy really do set the pace for the band. He is backed superbly by Kris on drums, Rabbie on bass and Max on guitar. Collectively they create a wonderfully full sound allowing Andy to just do his thing.
I am definitely looking forward to catching these guys live again soon….
Setlist is not necessarily all in the correct order – ‘I Wonder’, ‘Not Coming Down’, ‘Get Back’, ‘Keep Me Out Of It’, ‘Imagination’, ‘King Of Nothing’, ‘Alive’, ‘Don’t Turn Out the Lights’, ‘Heavy Metal Interlude’, and ‘Sayonara’.
Next to hit the stage was the wonderful Ethyrfield. These guys consist of brothers Ben and Zach Cornish on guitar and bass with Dan Aston on drums. They are definitely leading the way for the young guns and released their debut album ‘In Delirium’ in 2021 to much critical acclaim.
You really need to see these guys live to experience the full power of them live on stage they are a force of nature and with wonderful vocals from both brothers, we are treated to a mature and full-on rockin’ performance.
They hail from the west of England but have been impressing audiences up and down the country now for a few years with their music and performances. The world really is their oyster and I have no doubt they can achieve whatever they desire within music as long as they want it.
Their set consisted of eight songs that really highlighted their range of tracks from their two EP’s and debut album.
Setlist – ‘Sunstroke’, ‘Free The Dog’, ‘The Hunter’, ‘Remembering’, ‘Laying On Of Hands’, ‘Serenity’
‘Bitter Wishbone’, and ‘Bag Of Bones’.
The main support for the evening was the Swiss rockers Daxx & Roxane who always give 100% whenever they take to the stage, and this night was going to be no exception.
From the very first chord, it is full throttle with Cal on guitar never staying in one place or one position for a nanosecond. The guy is a human dynamo and will have you feeling exhausted just watching him.
One thing you will notice with these guys is that they always have so much fun on stage, either messing with each other or just performing for the crowd. Either way, they always bring the party vibe to any venue.
The twin-guitar attack of Cal and Simon really does bring a wonderful sound that is backed up perfectly by lead singer Cedric on bass and Luca on drums. Now Luca’s shirt never stays on for more than the first two songs of a set, and this was true tonight also. It was very hot in the venue, so I don’t blame him.
They throw in a funky and heavy version of the Stevie Wonder classic ‘Superstition’ in and amongst their repertoire of rockin’ tunes, and at one point Cal even takes to the drums in place of, then alongside Luca.
Another fabulous performance from a band that never disappoints.
Setlist – ‘Ticket To Rock’, ‘Girl Next Door, ‘Strange Woman’, ‘Dawn’, ‘Heal’, ‘Sugar Rush’, ‘Wild Child’, ‘Superstition’, ‘Lust & Love’, ‘Fast Lane’, and ‘Wrongside’.
Headliners for this Nozlite were the Norfolk rock n roll machine Bad Touch. Now, these guys have been tearing up stages for over a decade now and never fail to bring their inimitable musical style to the waiting crowd.
They have four studio albums under their belt now as well as a self-released number back in the day. They have performed to audiences all over the UK and Europe and played at and headlined many festivals.
Stevie Westwood is just a natural frontman and always interacts with the audience and just has a charm about him that endears him to the crowd. Again we have a twin guitar attack with Rob and Seeks both getting their time in the limelight, and not disappointing one bit whilst there. With Bailey on bass and George on drums, we have a very competent and experienced set of musicians that really do know their craft.
Their set consists of an array of tunes covering their studio releases as well as a wonderful cover of Alanis Morissette’s ‘Hand In My Pocket’. It is high energy and entertaining set that has the crowd dancing and singing along throughout and with the finale we are treated to one of their fan favourite tracks ‘99%’, which has the whole room rockin’.
Set list – ‘Lift Your Head Up’, ‘Good On Me’, ‘Strut’, ‘Dressed To Kill’, ‘Let Go’, ‘Too Much Of A Good Thing’, ‘I Get High’, ‘Can You Save Me’, ‘Hand In My Pocket’, ‘Come A Little Closer’, ‘Outlaw’ and ‘99%’.
This was a fitting end to a wonderful event. A big thank you must go to the venue, The 1865 and all their staff who made you feel welcome and to Jodie for putting it on. Roll on Nozfest in August….