Preview: Norwich gig guide April 6-12
Consistently one of the interesting British groups of the last few years, Mystery Jets return in support of their forthcoming fourth album, Radlands. Plus: Phi Life Cypher top a hip hop/reggae night, Horses Brawl also launch their fourth album and Blue Rose Code.
PHI LIFE CYPHER
Project, April 7
The special Boom Bap night (10pm-3.30am) at Project on Norwich Riverside is a joint production from Sensi-Tize-Live and the ever reliable Roots N Culture and is a full on urban music celebration of live hip hop, beatboxers, reggae, graffiti and much more.
The line-up of live performer s will include sets from Phi Life Cypher, Buggsy, The Four Owls and more.
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Luton-based Phi-Life Cypher have long been one the country's best and most skilled live hip hop crews. They were part of a pre-Dizzee Rascal underground UK hip hop scene that included the likes of Skinnyman, Rodney P and Taskforce.
Having cemented their reputation for rocking underground hip hop clubs up and down the country, Phi-Life have also appeared live on the Brit Awards, toured with the Gorillaz and even been voted Best Live Act at the unlikely surroundings of Cambridge Kings College.
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Though they started in various incarnations, nowadays they are a four-piece group — Life, Si-Phili and (fairly new member) Skit Slam are the MCs with DJ Nappa providing the beats. Their live shows are renowned for their accomplished stage presence, ridiculous freestyles and intelligent, frenetic rhyming.
Buggsy is a fast-spitting rasta MC from Bristol who first came to prominence on Rodney P and Skitz's 1Xtra show. The Four Owls are a new ornithologically-themed UK hip hop super group comprised of Leaf Dog and BVA of The Three Amigos, High Focus label founder Fliptrix and Verb T, who is undoubtedly one of the most prolific MCs in the UK.
t Further listening: www.myspace.com/philifecypher
Norwich Arts Centre, April 7
Horses Brawl return to Norwich Arts Centre to mark the release their fourth album Ruminantia.
Since 2003, the Norfolk-based duo, made up of Laura Cannell and Andre Bosman, have been making a name for themselves nationally and internationally with their innovative and experimental take on traditional and early music.
They draw listeners into a world where driving rhythms collide with the music of ancient Europe.
A highly acclaimed multi-instrumental duo with roots deeply embedded in the past — Laura plays recorders, fiddle and hardanger fiddle, while Andre plays guitar, acoustic bass and Indian harmonium — they unearth fragments of lost or forgotten tunes and re-compose them using extended instrumental techniques, improvisation and over-lapping rhythms to create mesmerizing and spellbinding new pieces.
For Ruminantia they've drawn on their backgrounds in traditional, early and contemporary improvised music. Based on fragments of tunes from as far back as 200BC to their own compositions, the album is a naked but true account of the duo at work.
The whole album was recorded in single takes and minimally mixed, creating an intimate record which includes the puffing and wheezing of the harmonium bellow, the chords of an overbowed fiddle and the clack and draw of a guitar being bowed.
Support comes from Norwich acoustic folk duo The Woodland Creatures.
t Further listening: www.horsesbrawl.co.uk
BLUE ROSE CODE
The Bicycle Shop, April 12
Influential London alternative folk artist Blue Rose Code has shared the stage with many a celebrated writer including the likes of Kris Drever, King Creosote, Lou Rhodes, John Renbourn, Joan As Policewoman and James Yorkston.
Singer-songwriter Ross Wilson moved from Edinburgh down to London having released an EP Rawlnish on Glasgow indie label Natural Studio Records in 2006. Blue Rose Code signed with London based Ho Hum Records to release limited edition 7' double A side of Whitechapel and Love in 2009.
Following the well received release, a UK tour and a sojourn to Japan, Ross put an end to BRC in 2010. Struggling with the lifestyle on the road, Ross stopped writing and playing altogether.
There followed months of variously working and volunteering with grass roots charities and community activists in East London, and travels to a remote croft on the Isle of Lewis.
However while counting the waves off the tiny island of Lewis in Spring of 2011 he began writing again before playing a handful of shows in New York.
Fast forward to 2012 and Ross seems to regained his mojo. He is sponsored by clothing label Aubin & Wills anfd is putting together co-branded merchandise and joining forces in creating a one-day festival. He's also been the subject of a documentary The Modern Craftsma', he's recorded his soon-to-be-released debut album North Ten.
t Further listening: www.bluerosecode.com
Norwich Arts Centre, April 12
Consistently one of the interesting British groups of the last few years, Mystery Jets return in support of their forthcoming fourth album Radlands, which, in a tale of two cities, was recorded in both Austin, Texas, and Streatham, London.
The Eel Pie Island clan, made up of Blaine Harrison, Will Rees, Kai Fish and Kapil Trivedi, co-produced the record, out on April 30, with Dan Carey, who has previously worked with Hot Chip, Franz Ferdinand and Emiliana Torrini.
'We've always wanted to make a record in America and after touring [[previous album] Serotonin, the time felt perfect to go and do it,' said Blaine Harrison. 'Our first three albums were entirely conceived and recorded in London so going out to Austin felt like the furthest place from everything we knew.
'We arrived with a handful of songs, but one in particular felt like it captured the spirit of why we had come there. It was called Radlands — a fusion of the 1970s Terrence Malick film Badlands and Redlands, Keith Richard's Sussex estate, which is also what we named our studio; a big old wooden house on the banks of the Colorado river.'
Blaine says the studio presented a rural idyll — perfect for piecing together the album. 'All we brought on the plane were the guitars on our backs, so we ended up borrowing all this amazing valve gear from an old guy called Jack who ran a little studio up in the hills.
'When we arrived home, it was hard to believe any of it even happened. But when Dan Carey heard it and invited us down to his studio we listened back to everything and it was all there, it was real. All we were missing were some gospel singers, which he found in the Streatham community ladies choir…'
t Further listening: www.mysteryjets.com
SOUNDS IN THE CITY
Alloy Ark + more (acoustic/indie) — Open
Shock! Hazard! (rock) — King Edward VII
Pout At The Devil (glam rock) — Brickmakers
Dirty Havana (rock) — Brewery Tap
Duke (hip hop) — Pulse
The Planks (soul) — Rackheath Green Man
Stone Pony (blues) — Walnut Tree Shades
She/Sez (rock/pop) — Lakenham Cock
Red Hot Rockers (rockabilly) — The Griffin
Lucas (soul) — Maid's Head (Old Catton)
Johnny Jump Band (blues/rock) — Micawbers Tavern
Soothsayer Presents (metal/rock) — B2
Jah Love & Indeed I (reggae) — Wildman
Norwich Folk Club — Christ Church Centre
Rumpole — Wensum Community Centre
Soul Power 74 — Moles Rest
Chippy — Fiveways
Daaron King — Bread & Cheese
Tim Ballard — Preseverance
Horses Brawl (folk) — Arts Centre
Olympians + more (indie) — Open
Phi Life Cypher + more (hip hop/reggae) — Project
Emma Hall Band (soul/pop) — Brickmakers
Crumbs For Comfort + Chaashing Dragons (indie/rock/charity) — Rivergarden
Sugar Rush (indie/pop) — King Edward VII
Fist Full of Lies (hardcore) — Carnival
Half Cut Heroes (rock) — The Stanley
Chibber (rock) — Lakenham Cock
Aviator (rock) — Woolpack
Penny Arcade (psych/funk/soul) — Rumsey Wells
Beat Delux ( — Arkwrights
Undec?Ded (rock) — Boundary
San (rock/blues) — Heartsease
Phil Male — Angel Gardens
Barry Lee — Maid's Head (Old Catton)
Shannan — Bread & Cheese
Tony Cann — Trowel & Hammer
Pat James — Heath House
Janny K — Robin Hood
Terry Adams — Sprowston Social Club
Alan Ley — Quebec Tavern
Pams House: feat. Rodi Style + more (dance) — Carnival
Murphy's Lore (Irish/roots) — Brewery Tap
Lou & The Diamonds (60s/5pm) — Silver Road Cottage
Lee Vasey (8pm) — Rackheath Green Man
Lee Vasey Big Band (12pm) — Brickmakers
Rockin For A Good Cause (charity/10 bands/12pm-12am) — Brickmakers
Floating Greyhounds (rock) — Heartsease
Jazz Jam: feat. Rich Buddie — Walnut Tree Shades
Ricci — Quebec Tavern
Jazz Jam — B2
Michael Chapman (blues/roots) — Arts Centre
Chasing Cadence + more (pop/rock) — B2
Brickie Blues Club: feat. Against The Grain (blues/rock) — Brickmakers
Zoe Gilby & Andy Chapman (jazz) — Rackheath Green Man
Laps Around The Lake + more (pop) — B2
Out Of Step (live bands) — Karma Kafe
Lee Vasey & Friends — Trowel & Hammer
Pure Acoustic (open mic) — Brickmakers
Traditional Irish Session — The Gatehouse
Open Mic Night — Angel Gardens
Mystery Jets (indie/rock) — Arts Centre
Blue Rose Code (alternative/folk) — Bicycle Shop
The Black Sharks (indie/rock) — Waterfront Studio
From The Jam (rock/tribute) — Waterfront
Neon Asylum (electronic/rock) — B2
The Afterhours Blues Band (blues) — Walnut Tree Shades
Mollyhawk (acoustic/rock) — Brickmakers
Runaway Mind Train (blues/folk) — Rumsey Wells
Sally Taylor & The Midnight Soul Band — Beluga
Johnny Jump Band (blues/rock) — Rose Tavern
Open Jam — King Edward VII
Open Mic — Garden House
Open Mic — The Wildman