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
BASSEKOU KOUYATE & NGONI BA
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.
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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.
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t Further listening: www.myspace.com/bassekoukouyate
THE DAWN CHORUS
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: www.thedawnchorus.com
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: www.myspace.com/theenemycoventry
THE OWL SERVICE
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: www.myspace.com/theowlservice
SOUNDS IN THE CITY
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