Preview: Norwich gig guide May 4-10

Enthralling dark rockers Alkaline Trio finally make it to Norwich as part of a UK tour celebrating their 15th anniversary and promoting their latest album Damnesia. Plus: Cocos Lovers and Hans Chew.


Norwich Arts Centre, May 5

Formed in 2008, Cocos Lovers (pronounced Co-Koss), are a close-knit six-piece band made up of family members and friends who hail from Deal on the Kent coast.

The band comprises Will Greenham (vocals/guitar/mandolin), Natasha Greenham (vocals/violin), Nicola Vella (vocals/flute/percussion), David Hatton (lead guitar), Billy Glinn (vocals/bass guitar), and Phil Self (vocals/drums/mandolin/guitar/banjo).

Since forming they have become a favourite on the UK festival scene, including three separate performances at last year's Glastonbury, and gained a reputation for fantastic multi-instrumental performances combined with choir-like harmonies and glorious cinematic melodies.

Their music is heartfelt and pure, combining a diverse array of influences and styles from traditional folk to African and Eastern rhythms and strains of the Deep South.

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Their 2010 debut album, Johannes, gained plenty of acclaim from critics as for its joyous musical curveballs that kept listeners guessing.

Their second album, Elephant Lands, was recorded at Muskie studios, made up of converted caravans on a working farm in the heart of the Kent countryside.

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Norwich Arts Centre, May 4

Formed in Leeds in 2005, the East Park Reggae Collective was brought together by long-time collaborators Johnny Tomlinson and Tommy Evans, and quickly gained a serious reputation on the Leeds scene as an epic live party band.

Fronted by the uncompromising vocals of Anna Stott, the band also boasts a heavyweight four-piece horn section, and a locked in rhythm section.

The band's rough breed of dub, reggae, ska and soul has one them fans across Europe and has seen them appear alongside some reggae legends, including the likes of Dawn Penn, Easy Star All Stars, The Skatalites, Mad Professor, The Beat, Trojan Soundsystem, Iration Steppa's and Blackalicious to name but a few.

The latest product of the fantastic Leeds music scene that forms the backbone of First Word, the band's debut album Three Stripe Science was the result of six years of hard work.

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Waterfront, May 9

Enthralling dark rockers Alkaline Trio finally make it to Norwich as part of a UK tour celebrating their 15th anniversary and promoting their latest album Damnesia.

The Chicago-based band had to postpone the tour last November after guitarist and vocalist Matt Skiba crushed his foot in a motorbike accident and was unable to travel.

The band was formed in 1996 originally consisting of Skiba, Rob Doran (bass/vocals) and Glenn Porter (drums/vocals). Doran left after their first EP, Sundials, and was replaced by Dan Andriano.

Their first full length album, Goddamnit, and a collection of their previously released EPs came before they made an international impact with 2001's From Here To Infirmary, backed by memorable videos for the singles Stupid Kid and Private Eye. Albums including Good Mourning, Crimson and Agony & Irony followed with the band building a following all the time and hitting the album charts.

Damnesia is their eighth album and showcases a selection of fan favourites from the band's extensive catalogue with, in the manner of Nirvana's Unplugged, a number of intimate semi-unplugged acoustic renditions as well as a cover version of the Violent Femmes' I Held Her in My Arms.

Support comes from Dave Hause and The Dear & Departed

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Bicycle Shop, May 10

Hans Chew is the latest international performer to take to the stage of the Bicycle Shop in St Benedict's Street, which has really begun to attract some top talent in recent months.

The New York-based artist visits as a duo with virtuoso guitarist Dave Cavallo at his side and promising a howling night of piano-driven rock'n'roll history. Think Jerry Lee Lewis on a Nick Cave trip, or Leon Russell tickling James Booker in the backseat of Little Richard's Cadillac.

'I'm a product of American culture circa 1975,' he explains. 'The Grand Ole Opry was on TV, Ralph Emery was on the radio. My grandfather sang harmony in a gospel quartet and taught me that high-lonesome sound. My mother turned me on to Hendrix and the Stones, but my father only listened to classical music: I knew Beethoven's Fifth before Led Zeppelin's fourth.'

Chew's 2010 debut album, Tennessee and Other Stories..., received four-stars from Rolling Stone, while Uncut included the record in their Top 50 Albums of the Year.

He is currently working on his next record, due later this year. His new single Mercy is a juggernaut slab of wailing Stax-esque Telecaster with an addictive backbeat groove and Otis Redding-like bridge.

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May 4

Camille O'Sullivan (cabaret/chantese) — Playhouse

East Park Reggae Collective (reggae) — Arts Centre

Darwin and the Dinosaur + Tied To The Mast + Hello Bear (indie) — Open

Star Wars Rave: feat. DJ Skism (dubstep) — Carnival

Don't Spook The Horses (Neil Young tribute) — Olives

The Collective (funk/soul) — Brickmakers

Night Train (funk/soul) — Hog In Armour

Ivyrise (pop/rock) — B2

Wicked Faith (indie/rock) — King Edward VII

Hard Rain (acoustic) — Brewery Tap

The Cream Horns (blues/funk) — Walnut Tree Shades

Music House: feat. Gill Alexander's Fairly Big Band + more — Wensum Lodge

Truescape (pop/rock) — Rackheath Green Man

Vikki H — Fiveways

San — Lakenham Cock

May 5

Cocos Lovers (alt-folk) — Arts Centre

Norwich Jazz Party — Airport Holiday Inn

To The Last (rock) — Brickmakers

Dirty Tricks + more (indie/rock) — B2

The Burning Crows + Pocket Gorillaz (rock) — King Edward VII

Tendahooks (rock) — Heartsease

Hot Cold Ground (blues) — Walnut Tree Shades

Storm (rock) — Boundary

Stepback (rock'n'roll) — Arkwrights

Doozoot (pop/rock) — Angel Gardens

King Dinosaur (rockabilly) — The Gordon

Pyevarotti — Trowel & Hammer

Platinum — The Windmill

Tony Cann — The Marlpitt

Shannan — Quebec Tavern

Liza Wolfe — The Oasis

May 6

Bo Nanafana: feat. The Cuban Brothers (Latin/comedy) — Open

Acaysha (folk/roots) — Brewery Tap

Dr Misfit (rock) — Boundary

Sally Taylor & The Midnight Soul Band — Whalebone

Clive Paul (60s) — Arkwrights

Norwich Jazz Party — Airport Holiday Inn

Anna Martin (4pm) — Robin Hood

Lee Vasey Big Band (12pm) — Brickmakers

Graham McGrotty (4pm) — Lakenham Cock

May 7

Brickies Sessions (open mic) — Brickmakers

Son of Cash (tribute) — Stanley

Jazz Jam: feat. Rich Buddie — Walnut Tree Shades

Janie K — Bread & Cheese

Jazz Jam — B2

Norwich Jazz Party — Airport Holiday Inn

May 8

Ladyhawke (electro/pop) — Waterfront

The Lines + more (indie) — Epic

Scott Hamilton (jazz) — Rackheath Green Man

Johnny Cash Roadshow (tribute) — Maddermarket

Brickies Blues Club: feat. Slow Gin (blues) — Brickmakers

May 9

Alkaline Trio (rock) — Waterfront

Outlands + more (gypsy/punk) — B2

Dave Thomas & Friends (acoustic) — Brewery Tap

Lee Vasey & Friends — Trowel & Hammer

Pure Acoustic (open mic) — Brickmakers

May 10

Hans Chew (Americana/acoustic) — Bicycle Shop

Guns 2 Roses + Metallica Reloaded (metal/tribute) — Waterfront

Keno Kings (rock/blues) — Walnut Tree Shades

Against The Odds (pop/rock) — Brickmakers

Soothsayer Promo (metal) — B2

Graham Horne — Rose Tavern

Open Jam — King Edward VII