Music Notes: Hello to Norwich band’s Bear necessities
Having enjoyed a great 2011, this year is shaping up to be even better for fast-rising Norwich band Hello Bear, previous winners of the Next Big Thing competition which helped launch the career of Ed Sheeran.
Having just returned from an action packed UK tour, the trio — comprised of Luke Fox on guitar an vocals, bassist Tom Harvey and Daryl Blyth on drums and vocals — are set for a busy few weeks back on their home patch.
Tonight they will be supporting Los Campesinos! at the Waterfront, a date that they've kept relatively quiet but which is special as they rate the Welsh band as major influences.
Then tomorrow night they will be the main event as they headline Norwich Arts Centre to mark the launch of their new album, This One Girl..., being released through Norwich label NROne Records.
And as if that wasn't enough they will also be guesting and performing on local radio and ready a special 7' vinyl single, called the Vegan Academy EP, which the band are releasing exclusively on brown 'bear' vinyl for Record Store Day which takes place on April 21.
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Hello Bear, who bill their music as post-sad core fun pop rock, started life in early 2009 as a solo project by Luke Fox. As a sole performer he spent a year performing acoustic show cases up and down the UK, but, gaining interest from the music industry, he felt he needed a band.
Anyone who remembers the old days when budding musicians would place an inky advert in the back pages of Melody Maker will be heartened to learn something similar lives on in the digital age.
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Placing an advert on social networking site Friend Face, Luke was introduced to drummer Daryl then later bass player Tom Harvey.
Having recorded their debut EP Fun At A Stable Volume on a sunny Sunday near the north Norfolk coast and supported numerous local bands, the trio were snapped up by local music stalwarts NROne Records and by April, had released their first single proper, An Exquisite Year For Charm.
Following this, the band embarked on a UK tour in 2011, before an action packed summer that saw them play the inaugural Playfest, as well as a prestigious showcase appearance at Liverpool Sound City.
Their second single, crowd favourite Indulgence, gave the band extra momentum to head into the studio to record their debut album at the remote Sickroom Studios. The band were clear on the album they wanted to record, citing influences including Los Campesinos! and Weezer.
Luke Fox explains: 'Our vision was to create a record that complimented the lyrical content, whilst also providing an accurate representation of the sound and energy of our live performances.'
The resulting album gets its launch this weekend. The band's support slot tonight isn't great timing given their own date tomorrow, but it's an opportunity they couldn't miss.
'Los Campesinos! is a big part of where our sound comes from,' explains Alex. 'So when we saw that they were coming to Norwich we couldn't miss an opportunity to support possibly the biggest inspiration in the Hello Bear camp. We know that this show would sell itself out. It's not going to make any difference if we were playing or not.'
Joining the band at the Arts Centre tomorrow will be an all local support, including Darwin & The Dinosaur, Dying Breeds and White Collar Crimes. Tickets �4 adv/�8 door.
n This One Girl... is released on NROne Records on April 2.