Preview: This week's gig guide

Simon ParkinA diverse mix of talents will be in Norwich this week, including acclaimed Malian musician and composer Bassekou Kouyate, The Enemy, Starsailor and alt folkies The Owl Service.Simon Parkin


Norwich Arts Centre, Sunday

Malian musician and composer Bassekou Kouyate is one of the true masters of the ngoni, a lute-like instrument from West Africa. Unlike the kora whose history goes back only a few hundred years, the ngoni has been the main instrument in griot storytelling since the 13th century.

In the late 1980s was part of Toumani Diabate's Symmetric Trio (alongside Keletigui Diabate) and they recorded their first albums together, Songhai and Djelika. Bassekou was also one of the key musicians on Ali Farka Toure's amazing posthumous album Savane and also toured with him.

For his debut solo album, Segu Blue, he has put together Mali's first ngoni quartet, Ngoni ba, which also includes Oumar Barou Kouyate, Moussa Bah and Andra Kouyate.

The repertoire is Bambara music from the region of Segu. Bambara music is pentatonic in nature and as close to the blues as you can get in Africa.

Most Read

t Further listening:


Queen Charlotte, Tuesday

Rising indie-folk group The Dawn Chorus are likely to be looking to prove their critics right with this latest UK tour trialling material prior to recording.

Their entrance on to the music scene with three EPs and a debut album in 2008 led to them to attract praise from music publications such as RockSound and Planet Sound.

Indeed, the latter placed the band's first studio album The Big Adventure as the seventh best album of the year, describing their country-pop sound as "utterly gorgeous".

The Dawn Chorus describe their style as a British twist on the popular multi-instrumental grooves made popular by US groups such as Arcade Fire and Bright Eyes.

They've pencilled in September as a release date for the next album. Here much of it here first.

t Further listening:


UEA, Tuesday

Return tickets only for Coventry indie rockers who are preparing to follow up their all-conquering, chart-topping debut, We'll Live And Die In These Towns, with new album, Music For The People.

Recorded at Monnow Valley Studios towards the end of last with producer Mike Crossey, who has worked with the Arctic Monkeys and Razorlight), the album is a bold step on from the trio's debut, mixing the warm, richer texture of recording to tape with songs full of strident ambition.

'People have forgotten how to record proper rock'n'roll records,' claims vocalist/guitarist Tom Clarke. 'That's what we wanted to do. This is a great sounding record made from the school of the old but has got some brand spanking new anthems that are undeniable on it.

'At all our gigs there's always been people from every walk of life, it's something I'm quite proud of, our crowds are quite classless,' he says of the album's title. 'We don't make music for a little niche of people, we make it for absolutely everyone.'

t Further listening:


Norwich Arts Centre, Wednesday

A night of folk with a twist to celebrate the release of another album of sun-kissed acoustic buzzings by Norwich outfit wiQwar - aka Russell Wickwar.

He'll be joined by performances from Cake & Ale and Jason Steel, before a headlining slot from The Owl Service.

Formed June 2006 in Leigh-on-sea, by Steven Collins and Jo Lepine, augmented by Nancy Wallace (of The Memory Band), Dom Cooper and Diana Collier, they are a collaboration of like minded musicians driven by a love of British films of the 1960s and 70s and the sounds of the English folk revival.

Their album, A Garland of Song, wion significant praise last year for its fusing of traditional British folk ballads with elements of psychedelic rock, interspersed with experimental sitar-drenched instrumentals.

t Further listening:


t April 3

Fever Fever (rock/indie) - Arts Centre

Philip Shamino Quartet (jazz/funk) - Cider Shed

Trepidation Base (drum n bass) - Queen Charlotte

Pain Penitentiary (metal) - B2

The Good Times (ska/reggae) - King Edward VII

To The Last (rock/metal) - Brickmakers

Replica (rock) - Blueberry

Snowblind (metal/rock) - Marquee

Coyote Wrecks (rock/blues) - Walnut Tree Shades

t April 4

Bassekou Kouyate & Ngoni Ba (world) - Arts Centre

1Up Festival: feat. Jaya The Cat + more (ska/punk) - Queen Charlotte

Dumpster Pop (ska/punk) - Marquee

The Rock Doctors (rock) - Brickmakers

Ostracoda (rock) - B2

Hair Traffic Control (indie/pop) - Unit 5

Raw Edge (rock) - King Edward VII

Money Shot (rock/indie) - Blueberry

Ska Face (ska) - Boundary

The Reckoning (rock) - Reindeer

Leopard Trio (rock'n'roll) - Heath House

t April 5

Magic: A Kind of Queen (tribute) - Theatre Royal

1Up Festival: feat. Failsafe + more (ska/punk) - Queen Charlotte

Susie Ro & Ayla (folk) - Cider Shed

Daffy & The Alien (rock) - Boundary

Blue Fingers (blues) - King Edward VII

Lee Vasey Big Band (12pm) - Bickmakers

Pete 'Kiwi' Keegan (skiffle) - Unthank Arms

t April 6

Missing Leech (folk/punk) - Queen Charlotte

Tell It To The Marines (alternative pop) - B2

t April 7

The Enemy (rock) - UEA

The Dawn Chorus (indie/folk) - Queen Charlotte

Pandemonium (rock) - Brickmakers

Gareth & Jane (acoustic) - Take 5

t April 8

Starsailor (rock/indie) - UEA

The Owl Service (folk) - Arts Centre

Ritual (hardcore/rock) - Marquee

The Citizens (indie) - Edith Cavell

t April 9

The Great Shakes ( - Arts Centre

Night Train (funk/soul) - Brickmakers

The Doledrums (psychedelic/garage rock) - Queen Charlotte

City of Antics (punk/experimental) - B2

Cherry Blossom Melodies + more (local) - Blue Bar & Lounge (Riverside)

Up The Line - Blueberry

Killer Hurts (metal) - Marquee

Stonewood (rock/blues) - Walnut Tree Shades

Straight Jacket Promotions (punk/metal) - King Edward VII

Feet To The Beat (reggae/ska/dub) - Take 5