Preview: Norwich gig guide Dec 2-8
With thunderous live performances matching the power of fellow Scot's Mogwai and a pop sensibility comparable to that of Foals or Bloc Party, We Were Promised Jetpacks have stealthily become a fully-fledged rock band. Plus: Martin Harley, The Beat and Push.
WE WERE PROMISED JETPACKS
Norwich Arts Centre, December 5
With thunderous live performances matching the power of fellow Scot's Mogwai and a pop sensibility comparable to that of Foals or Bloc Party, We Were Promised Jetpacks have stealthily become a fully-fledged rock band. Like a rowdier version of Fat Cat labelmates the Twilight Sad, they deliver loud, avidly literate, fiercely melodic indie-rock.
After the release of their debut, These Four Walls, in 2009 the Edinburgh band - made up of Adam Thompson (guitar/vocals), Michael Palmer (guitar), Sean Smith (bass) and Darren Lackie (drums) - have achieved huge success touring America and Europe, highlights of which include selling out New York's Williamsburg Music Hall and attracting high-profile support slots for the likes Passion Pit and Jimmy Eat World.
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Armed with the confidence built from their time on the road and firm ideas as to how the new record should sound, their latest album In The Pit Of The Stomach is emphatically a sustained piece of work full of fiery, muscular and hugely atmospheric epics like lead single Medicine, Picture Of Heath and Human Error – and impresses with the sheer scale of its ambition. Support comes from Newcastle band Let's Buy Happiness
t Further listening: www.wewerepromisedjetpacks.com
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The Bicycle Shop, December 5
Fresh back from the Virgin Music festival in Barbados and a stint of recording in Texas, internationally-acclaimed slide guitar player and songwriter Martin Harley takes to the road in his native country and plays the Bicycle Shop in St Benedict's, Norwich, on Monday.
His music has been enjoyed from within London's prestigious Royal Albert Hall to the far reaches of the globe, from Australia to America, Mali to Montreal and almost everywhere in between. Playing both regular guitar and acoustic weissenborn (a traditional Hawaiian style slide guitar played across the lap) you can expect to hear songs from all four studio albums.
His 'British Americana' sound is influenced by Delta Blues and Gypsy swing mixed with a road worn style of song writing that echoes a life on the move.
Martin Harley Band his blues/roots acoustic trio have recently been gain great acclaim from prominent music magazines who've hailed them 'shining talents in the British acoustic scene...definitely ones to watch'.
The band's third studio album, Drumrolls For Somersaults, saw them broadening their sound from mournful ballads to jazzy swing to bluesy hip hop and beyond into full blown rock.
t Further listening: www.martinharley.com
Waterfront, December 8
The Beat, along with their contemporaries The Specials, The Selecter, and Madness, became one of the most popu-lar and influential bands of the British ska movement.
Jerry Dammers signed the band to his legendary Two-Tone label and their debut single, a cover of Smokey Robin-son's Tears Of A Clown, was a surprise Top 10 hit in 1979.
Like Madness they didn't stay long on the label, going on instead to form their own, Go Feet, and continuing to score hits with tunes such as Mirror In The Bathroom, Save It For Later, I Confess, Stand Down Margaret, and their cover of Andy William's Can't Get Used To Losing You. Between 1980 and 1983 they toured relentlessly, building up a following in America, where they were known as The English Beat.
They reformed in 2003, with Ranking Roger's son Matthew Murphy replacing Dave Wakeling on vocals. The present line-up was completed when Mark 'Chico' Hamilton became the band's permanent saxophone player.
t Further listening: www.thebeatofficial.com
Norwich Arts Centre, December 7
The spirit of classic soul and funk is alive and kicking. In the mainstream Adele continues a chart topping British tradition of retro soul and funk inspired artists which spans Dusty Springfield to Jamiroquai, but on the global flip-side is a thriving underground of crate digging soul 'n funk believers.
Into this dynamic funk fuelled community comes Push – one of mainstays of the 1980s Rare Groove and Acid Jazz scene alongside Brand New Heavies, Young Disciples and Soul II Soul.
Formed back in 1987, Push were at the heart of a community that thrived on JB inspired funk, Blaxsploitation soundtracks and raw soul-jazz. They toured Europe and Japan and were regulars onstage at Gilles Peterson's legendary Talking Loud and Saying Something sessions at London's Dingwalls.
The triumvirate of and Crispin Taylor (drums), Ernie McKone (bass) and Mark Vandergucht (guitar) also doubled up as the rhythm section for the innovative Galliano – a conscious and wayward band that sold in excess of 800,000 albums.
Back youring they've recently released a single, Lay It On The Line, comprising a previously unreleased track that features the vocal talents of Seal. Support comes from The Doggett Brothers.
t Further listening: www.pushband.com
SOUNDS IN THE CITY
Pout At The Devil + more (glam rock) — Waterfront
The Toy Hearts (acoustic) — Olives
The Planks (blues/soul) — Walnut Tree Shades
Blind Tiger (rock) — King Edward VII
The Collective (rock) — Brickmakers
The Fall of Science + more (metal/rock) — B2
Dr Misfits (rock) — Blueberry
Norwich Folk Club — Christ Church Centre
Music House: feat. Lefty with Becca Hazel + more (acoustic) — Wensum Lodge
Murphy's Lore (folk/roots) — Brewery Tap
National Image (rock/pop) — Silver Road Cottage
Backstreet Soul Club (northern soul) — Keir Hardie Hall
Bill Downs — Angel Gardens
Janie K — Fiveways
Xmas Punk Bash: feat. The Pistols + more (punk) — Waterfront
Ukulele Open Jam (2pm) — Black Horse
Ben Watson (jazz) — The Forum
Devil's Rock (blues) — Blueberry
Mister Pink (rock) — King Edward VII
Guns Or Roses (rock/tribute) — Brickmakers
The Dude Coopers (bluegrass) — Golden Star
Uprising (rock) — Boundary
Strollers (rock'n'roll) — Arkwrights
Live Music (five local bands) — Wildman
Steve Moyse — Angel Gardens
Steve Alan — Heath House
Dave Cass — Keir Hardie Hall
Mickey Spanton — Quebec Tavern
Alan Ley — Trowel & Hammer
Only Men Aloud (classical/pop) — Theatre Royal
The Searchers (pop/rock) — St Andrew's Hall
Rock Sound Tour: feat. Every Time I Die (rock) — Waterfront
Cakes and Ale + more (folk/indie) — Arts Centre
Honeydripper (rock/blues) — Brewery Tap
Dr Misfit (rock/4pm) — Boundary
Ken Conner (acoustic/3pm) — Blueberry
Ritchie Budd (jazz) — Walnut Tree Shades
Stuart Morrison (soul/blues) — Tao Lounge
Lee Vasey Big Band (12pm) — Brickmakers
Celtic Session — Gatehouse
Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain (acoustic) — Theatre Royal
Fish (rock/acoustic) — Waterfront
We Were Promised Jetpacks + more (rock/indie) — Arts Centre
Martin Harley (blues) — The Bicycle Shop
Lee Vasey (jazz) — Blueberry
Stookey Blue (folk) — Micawbers Tavern
Reggae At The Crypt (reggae/dub) — Bedfords
Brickie Sessions (open mic) — Brickmakers
Blind Tiger (rock) — Brickmakers
Live & Direct (acoustic) — Rumsey Wells
Eco Steve's Solar Studio — Wildman
Jazz N Jam (open mic) — Blueberry
Trad Music (acoustic/roots) — Beehive
Tim Densham & Simon Denny (jazz) — Rackheath Green Man
Push (soul/funk) — Arts Centre
Metal Lust: feat. 101% Pantera + more (metal/rock) — Waterfront
Grapevine Acoustic: feat. Dumbfoundus + more (acoustic) — Bedfords
Taking Hayley + more (pop/rock) — B2
Live Spot: feat. Laurence Brooks + more (acoustic) — The Langtry
Pure Acoustic (open mic) — Brickmakers
Open Mic + Bill Downs — Angel Gardens
The Beat (ska/reggae) — Waterfront
Andy Kirkham and Swingball (world/jazz) — Arts Centre
Sugar Rush (rock) — Blueberry
She Sez (rock/pop) — Brickmakers
Rival Promo: feat. Lecarla + more (rock) — B2
Honeydripper (rock/blues) — Walnut Tree Shades
Ghostriders Western Club: feat. Johnny Rondo (country) — TA Centre
Mark Anthony & The Funky Stuff Band (soul/disco) — Beluga
Jude Garrold (acoustic) — Brewery Tap
Monk Inc. (jazz) — Rose Tavern
Runaway Mind Train (indie/folk) — Rumsey Wells
Johnny Jump Band (blues/rock) — Micawbers Tavern
Open Jam — King Edward VII
Open Mic — Garden House
Open Mic — Wildman