Preview: This week's gig guide
Simon ParkinSTARS OF SUNDAY LEAGUENorwich Arts Centre, January 15Alt-folksters Stars Of Sunday League are Euan Robinson and Sarah Triggs who over the past year have played End Of The Road Festival and established themselves on the London folk circuit - playing alongside Laura Marling, Jeffrey Lewis, Johnny Flynn and Chris Wood.Simon Parkin
STARS OF SUNDAY LEAGUE
Norwich Arts Centre, January 15
Alt-folksters Stars Of Sunday League are Euan Robinson and Sarah Triggs who over the past year have played End Of The Road Festival and established themselves on the London folk circuit - playing alongside Laura Marling, Jeffrey Lewis, Johnny Flynn and Chris Wood.
Both are also regular musical collaborations with Emmy The Great, but together they received lots of national BBC radio play in 2009 and were deemed by one national newspaper to be the next big thing in the ever-expanding London folk scene.
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They're joined by Arts Centre favourite Alex Sheppard. Since moving to London three years ago, the former Next Big Thing finalist has played support slots for Dirty Pretty Things, been featured in NME and performed at Latitude.
Opening will be indie-folk pioneers Adelaide's Cape, originally from Norwich and now based in Bristol, whose eclectic, intelligent style has earned them comparisons with Mumford & Sons and Noah And The Whale.
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t Further listening: www.myspace.com/starsofsundayleague
RUPA AND THE THE APRIL FISHES
Norwich Arts Centre, January 19
Rupa And The April Fishes are among the latest wave of category-defying, all-musical-points-of-the-compass collective to come from the San Francisco melting-pot.
Rupa is Rupa Marya who has a day job as a doctor in a San Francisco hospital and who sings in an extraordinarily eclectic mixture of styles that reflect her background.
She may have been born in California but her mother and father were originally from the Punjab region of northern India and she spent much of her life in France.
So far the outfit has recorded two albums, including the punningly titled Extraordinary Rendition, each containing a varied and thoughtful songs, many of them in Spanish or French and with influences that range from chanson to Mexican, gypsy and reggae, with the occasional reminder of Rupa's Indian roots.
t Further listening: www.myspace.com/aprilfishes
UNDERLINE THE SKY
B2, January 21
Ipswich pop-punk outfit Underline the Sky got a huge boost last year when they won the Road to V competition, getting the chance to open the V Festival in Chelmsford in front of thousands. Not bad for a band who had only formed a few months beforehand when singer Bronwyn Cooper, inspired by a love of US band Paramore, joined forces with Dan Oaten (guitar), Tom Bryce (guitar and vocals), Chron Richardson-Todd (bass) and James Hicks (drums).
'When we first got together it was a case of jamming together and seeing what happens,' said James. 'We get on so well as friends but musically we clicked straight away.'
Drama student Bronwyn is something of a star in the making. 'We knew how good her voice was and thought if we could get that in a band we'd be able to get a long way,' says James. 'There's something a little bit different about Bronwyn which makes her so special.'
The band quickly put a lot of gigs under their belt, appearing across the region, and have emerged as ones to look out for. Support comes from Softbodies, I Found The Killer and Survive Atlantica.
t Further listening: www.myspace.com/underlinethesky
Norwich Arts Centre, January 21
Singer-songwriter Laura Veirs will be performing songs soon-to-be-released seventh album, July Flame, said to be a return to form after 2007's break-up album Saltbreakers, with her band The Hall Of Flames.
Veirs debut was her own self-titled album, recorded live and featuring just her and guitar in 1999. She has since made six highly-acclaimed records with producer Tucker Martine.
In 2003 she released Troubled by the Fire, a full-band effort that found Laura sharing the studio with such luminaries as Bill Frisell and violist Eyvind Kang.
Her latest offering explores the emotion of mid summer, drenched in wood smoke, sunlight and warm nights. Composed in the barn behind her house in Portland, Oregon the album is a relatively stripped-down folk record highlighting Veirs' masterful finger-picking guitar and confident vocals. Support comes from Old Believers and Cataldo.
t Further listening: www.lauraveirs.com
REEL BIG FISH
UEA, January 21
Reel Big Fish are one of the legions of Californian ska-punk bands that edged into the mainstream following the commercial success of No Doubt and Sublime.
Like most of their peers, their hyperkinetic stage shows, juvenile humour, ironic covers of new wave pop songs, and metallic shards of ska distinguished their sound. The group cultivated an underground following that broke into the mainstream in 1997, when their single Sell Out became a rock radio and MTV favourite.
Founding member vocalist/guitarist Aaron Barrett still fronts them band, together with horn players Dan Regan and Scott Klopfenstein who've been with them 14-years.
Last year they released, Fame, Fortune and Fornication, an album of cover songs, and have recently been holed up in the studio working on a new album to be released this summer.
t Further listening: www.reel-big-fish.com
SOUNDS IN THE CITY
t January 15
In Rapture (indie/rock) - Brickmakers
Super Action Heroes (rock) - King Edward VII
The Size Nines + Kapok (alternative/punk) - B2
Sweet Arlita (rock) - Marquee
Red Leaf (rock) - Blueberry
t January 16
Hair Traffic Control + more (indie 7.45pm) - Arts Centre
Play The Music (acoustic local 1pm) - Arts Centre Caf� Bar
To The Last (rock) - Brickmakers
Modfest: feat. Staprest (rock) - B2
Keno Kings (blues/rock) - King Edward VII
End Soteria + more (metal) - Marquee
Dirty Havana (rock/acoustic) - Blueberry
Ska Ta Brain (ska) - Marlborough Arms
Pete 'Kiwi' Keegan (skiffle) - The Champion
t January 17
Jazica (electro-pop) - B2
Outahablues (blues 3pm) - King Edward VII
Lee Vasey Big Band (12pm) - Brickmakers
t January 18
Jazz N Jam (open mic) - Blueberry
The Sessions (open mic) - Brickmakers
t January 19
The Session (Irish) - Cider Shed
Folk Night (folk) - Micawber's Tavern
No Holds Barred (rock/punk) - Marquee
Heights + more (pop/punk) - B2
Acoustic Jam Sess (open mic) - Brickmakers
t January 21
Cutback + more (rock) - Marquee
Robert Brown (acoustic) - Blueberry
Mary Jones Scandal (rock/punk) - Brickmakers
The Bug Hunters (folk rock) - Rose Tavern