Richmond, VA – The Richmond forecast called for a calm night on June 11th, although little did the forecasters know, ‘Hurricane’ Nita Strauss was rolling into town to bring a localized storm that would leave a lasting footprint on The Canal Club.
The evening started with a VIP session before the show. Nita hosts these sessions to answer questions and talk with fans about a variety of topics. On this night, we talked about topics from the classic rock knowledge of today’s youth (or lack thereof) to guitar techniques and performing before a large audience for the first time. One thing that really stuck out at the conclusion of the session was Nita’s memory. One of the participants had participated in her last VIP in Richmond in December 2018. Not only did she recognize him, but she also remembered his name. The session ended nicely with an autograph and photo op. The calm was drawing to a close.
The atmospheric conditions started to change about 6:30PM, when the first of 4 opening bands took the stage. Having seen Nita before, I was not surprised that 3 of the 4 opening acts were local bands. The local bands included Retrosphere, an instrumental rock band, Roc Kandi, who played primarily instrumental covers but did have a couple vocal pieces, and The BBC, another hard rocking local band. The 4th band was Kore Rozzik, a NYC based band known for its hard theatrical style and stage presence. The evening transitioned into the main event; storm preparations were complete.
Hurricane Nita made landfall at 9:20 PM, opening with a song from her album, Controlled Chaos called “Pandemonium 2.0”. Accompanied by her band consisting of Katt Scarlett (keyboards), Dean (Bass), Johnny D. Young (Guitar), and Josh Villalta (drums), the early intensity was about a Category 3 – plenty of power, but room to grow.
Overcoming what appeared to be a few technical difficulties (kudos to the stage and sound crews!), Nita and the band kept the storm intensity rising throughout the performance, ultimately peaking at an unprecedented Category 6, amps to 12 (one better than 11) energy level.
Most of the music was from Nita’s high-intensity album, Controlled Chaos, however, her set did include two covers not on the album, “Eighteen” (Alice Cooper) performed by Mickie James (wrestler and singer) and “Aces High” (Iron Maiden) performed by Kim Dylla (artist, singer, maker of Kylla Custom Rock Wear). Both did an outstanding job maintaining the force of the storm!
Nita and the band slowly began to reduce the energy level back to Category 4, finishing with the only cover on her album, an instrumental version of Queen’s, “The Show Must Go On” and an original, “Our Most Desperate Hour.” The songs were aptly named and well placed in the performance. The show did go on; a high-intensity show one must see and hear to fully appreciate. While the hour may not have been desperate, Nita left this correspondent desperately wanting to hear more. In the aftermath of Hurricane Nita, The Canal Club skies have returned to the forecast calm, with the next possible sighting in August when the Hurricane will appear in Northern Virginia with Alice Cooper. That night will include a double whammy, consisting of Hurricane Nita and Lizzy ‘Halestorm’ Hale. It’s time to start preparing for the storm of the century.
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Lion Among Wolves
I’m Eighteen (Alice Cooper cover) (Mickie James vocals)
Aces High (Iron Maiden cover) (Kim Dylla vocals)
The Stillness at the End
The Show Must Go On (Queen cover) (instrumental)
Our Most Desperate Hour
Show Date: 6/11/2019
To hear more Nita, check out her video for “Our Most Desperate Hour”: