Serving up a slice of Americana

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Island music fans may remember The New Madrids from Loopallu in September, but if you didn’t catch them, don’t miss their Stornoway gig.

American roots and soul are at the heart of this band with a hefty slice of rock n roll and blues on the side.

This Perthshire hailing five-piece includes vocalists Donny McElligott and Ian Hutchison, drummer Maurice ‘Mo’ McPherson, Owen ‘Scaryophonic’ Nicholson on strings and Callum Keith, bass player extraordinaire.

Talking about their style, Donny mused: “Our range of influences are pretty broad, from Gram Parsons, the Stones, Skynrd, Black Crowes, Ryan Adams, Drive by Truckers, Otis Redding, Teenage Fanclub, AC/DC, The Band, the list really could go on and on.

“ I guess what you’ll hear of these influences when you listen to us play is an honesty in the sound we make, the way we listen to each other and let each other express ourselves individually while creating the sound as a group.”

The New Madrids were formed in 2010 by the four remaining members of Americana stalwarts $outhpaw and the lead singer/founder of rock and blues outfit ‘The Revivals’.

Their debut album ‘Through the Heart of Town’ was released in January 2014 and Saturday night’s Island gig is sure to treat the crowd to some of these tracks.

Donny teed up the set list: “You’ll be hearing plenty from the first album, but we’ll also be playing some new material as well as some choice covers which the Americana crowd will appreciate, we hope!”

And as for the tunes that will get you tapping your dancing feet: “We’ve had some great feedback over the past year and a half, fantastic reviews and great airplay,” revealed Donny: “The favourites seem to be Shine a Light, Shake, Mountain of Trouble and Alaska.

“But we also like to indulge ourselves and others by playing a bit of Gram Parsons, Black Crowes, Steve Earle, maybe even a bit of Taylor Swift! If it’s good enough for Ryan Adams then it’s fine for us!”

As well as gigging around the country the band are busy writing material for album number two, and with a few demos already recorded, they are close to booking the recording dates to lay down the new material.

Donny gave us some insight to the band’s creative process: “ The songs from Through the Heart of Town were written by myself and Ian (he’s the good looking one). We each had five tracks on the album.

“However this time around we’ve been doing some co-writing with each other.

“ Owen has also been chipping in with ideas (he’s the really talented one) and as a group we all get in the rehearsal room and thrash out the songs into the fully arranged finished article. So everyone makes their mark so to speak.”

It’s time to lick your lips as this gig should be as satisfying as a slice of deep pan apple pie for all our home-grown Americana lovers.

The New Madrids will play Stornoway Golf Club on Saturday November 21st.

Tickets are priced £10 and will be available on the door on the night, or from W.J. Macdonald Butchers, Francis Street.