A collection of songs recorded during the Unthanks tour last year, when they returned to their roots, singing unaccompanied and in harmony. More a miscellany of tunes than a curated collection, this is nonetheless what traditional folk music is all about - reflecting on hard times with both stoicism and good humour. It's a timely reminder of happier times, when folk congregated in big rooms and listened to other people singing.
I’m watching something meandering, discursive and episodic, but for all the seeming flakiness and chaos, it quickly becomes apparent that Louise and Rebecca are presenting a tightly choreographed duologue. What sets Sh!t Theatre apart, however, is a willingness to flip humour and horror back and forth – sometimes recklessly so. The maxim of not knowing whether to laugh or cry never seemed more apposite and the effect is unnerving and disorientating.
A hugely entertaining production that acknowledged its period charm, yet cleverly distinguished itself with a stylish shift to the louche, unbuttoned milieu of the swinging sixties. Anthony Banks’s jolly revival never took itself too seriously, yet delivered all the necessary ingredients. It was fun, wildly improbable, and tied everything up neatly at the end
Dripping with melancholy, this is an astonishingly assured and mature work. In an age when we select rather than browse and skim rather than immerse, it’s such a pleasure to fall across an album of such substance.
"Sometimes I have to check myself and think whether John would really say something. I worry that John might be a Daily Mail reader who supports Brexit – I don’t think he is, but sometimes it’s tricky to come down one side or the other..."
The music itself was full of stark, thunderous menace, counterpointed with moments of surprising delicacy. On occasion I was gobsmacked by the band’s symphonic ambitions; at other times I felt I was listening to little more than a cacophonous row.
The evening inevitably finished on a rousing encore of Easy Livin’ (proving not that every song had to be tricky to be good) and the band grinning from ear to ear as they played. It only served to consolidate the abiding impression throughout, of the strong bond between the men on stage, delighted that they still got to do this for a living.
After the sunshine and warmth of the previous night's 'L'elisir d'amore' the Glyndebourne Tour could not have provided more by way of contrast.
Glyndebourne Tour in Norwich last night gave me the opportunity to immerse myself for two and a half hours in Italian operatic sunshine, whilst the rest of Norwich shivered in the dark and the cold outside.
Northern Ballet are always eagerly awaited visitors to the Theatre Royal, both for their full productions and for their wonderful child-friendly shows (they return in April 2020 with a special version of Little Red Riding Hood). We now have October 2020 to look forward to, and their return with an exciting new production – Merlin
Guitar music is by no means dead. It has just been resting.
It also says much for this production that a cocktail of an unmarried teenage pregnancy, gay friendships, mixed race relationships, alcoholism and unremitting poverty, could be presented with such defiant stoicism and good humour.
After taking their bows together, she and Clare Uchima leave the stage, and an audience that has just given them the biggest, most rapturous, ovation that I can ever remember hearing at the LCR.
..it was with some trepidation that I went along to see him play with his Bastard Sons, and I desperately wanted to like what I found. What a pleasure it is, therefore, to report what a great band they are....
Why did so many of the Sgt Pepper generation turn their backs on revolution?
The fluidity of the movement, together with the dancers' phenomenal strength and control, is breathtaking, and lead dancer Zeleydi Crespo has a powerful presence which has the entire audience spellbound
The band was uniformly excellent....
Pizza Shop Heroes is a significant and worthwhile attempt to explore the harsh realities of seeking asylum in the UK. It is episodic and uneven, but has a huge heart.
Reach The Moon, managed to achieve what many others have tried and failed to do – to recreate the excitement and overwhelming sense of achievement that emerged from that historic moment on July 20th, 1969
They may have been around for almost two decades, and may not have visited Norwich for a while but, judging by tonight's show, Hot Chip have certainly not gone off the boil.
Was Wild Paths 2019 a success? Well, you had better believe it. With its incredibly ambitious goals for a first year, booking a ridiculously rich array of artists and venues, but by galvanising a fantastic team of organisers and volunteers, somehow Ben Street had pulled it off – four days and nights of remarkable shows that reinforced Norwich's position on the musical map, and gave the city's music fans plenty to talk about for months to come. Thank you, Ben.
The gentlemen of Hawklords have long since been able to stand on their own feet, a comfortable distance from their Hawkwind association as they prolifically pump out freshly minted material that continues to impress
Thought-provoking, at times perhaps a little clichéd, but entirely relevant and altogether rather beautiful.
Acid Mother Temple are a quite extraordinary genre-defying ensemble of talented Japanese musicians that from the outset delivered a wall of thunderous sound that was energising, uplifting and just a bit bonkers
This was a precious evening of magnificent songwriting, professionalism and performance, all served up by one of Sheffield's finest.
Rambert's visits to Norwich are always eagerly anticipated, and this programme of three very different yet thematically interconnected pieces, demonstrates Benoit Swan Pouffer's commitment to maintaining the company's proud reputation for taking risks....
if you are looking for a friendly and extremely well-organised weekend that offers an eclectic mix of music that makes you want to dance, makes you want to cry, and sometimes just makes you go want to go 'wow!', then Deepdale is it
Visit most of the various musical venues in Norwich, and I’ll warrant you will do so with a preconception of the kind of act you’re going to see. The exception is surely Epic Studios, frequently playing host to the eccentric and undefinable that doesn’t easily fit in anywhere else
an evening of knockabout fun with a charming host that was warm and inclusive, but how frustrating that, with a just a little more work and attention to detail, we could have had so much more.
This surely confirms them as one of the most innovative and original acts to emerge in 2019
Exciting solo performances from each player demonstrate Nérija's collaborative ethic, and the breadth of individual talent within this scintillating project.
A brilliantly brave debut.
It is a journey that, over the course of two hours, and more than six centuries, tells the tale of two cities....As a result, I am more in love with this city than ever before. Anglia Square included.
Armstrong’s ensemble cast looked to be having enormous fun chattering their way through acres of exposition in clipped, received pronunciation, delivering their lines with exactly the right degree of knowing humour, without ever quite lapsing into parody
This was indeed an evening of wide-ranging musical delights, when the sun really did come out and shine
During the course of the evening we get a chance to hear each and every one of the album's ten track
… the evening was always going to end too soon
This production left me wondering at my appraisal of the earlier work.
Back in the early 80's Altered Images were one of the biggest pop acts around, with three top 30 albums and six UK top 40 singles between 1981 and 1983. We talked to lead singer and songwriter Clare Grogan, and asked her about the band's initial success, and their continuing popularity more than 35 years after Happy Birthday was first released.
The end came too soon, in an evening that had flown by
Bells and Spells is an episodic, hallucinogenic journey through increasingly loopy vignettes drawn from Chaplin’s weird and wonderful imagination.
Stunning soloists, extraordinary harmonies, and flawless execution were evident throughout a performance
What proved consistent throughout the evening was Gillam’s infectious enthusiasm and commitment to her instrument and the eclectic pieces she had chosen to play, something that shone through her brief chats with the audience
Hannigan's typically sparse and ethereal folk compositions into a sonic panorama that is nothing short of alchemic.
Tracks like Ghosts and Lovers ably demonstrate what a beautiful album Ellipsism has turned out to be
Jesse Mac Cormack's album debut arrives as a work of scorching atmosphere, panoramic tumbling melodies and vast lyrical spaces
The resultant 60 minute show is a kaleidoscopic and psychedelic delight from start to end.
Whichever route (musical choices, age, or whatever) brought us here, we were all to experience to one of the most moving and stirring musical evenings that I have attended at the UEA.
The Slow Readers Club may have cornered the Indie electro doom pop market, such as it is, but they’ve been clearly influenced by some of the finest acts of the last century, mixing up a cocktail of sounds in a way that is both discriminating and imaginative.
Roseate, is undoubtedly the strongest track of the entire album, a powerful mission statement that begins with harp and ethereal vocals and builds to a surging conclusion, complete with pounding drum machine, synth and strings.
It proved to be as stunning and breath taking as ever, confounding the prejudices of anyone (not least me) who thinks ballet simply isn’t for them.
this music contains brilliantly crafted slices of wit and irony set out to debunk male toxicity, xenophobia and anti-matriarchy
Stoppard’s text constantly reminds us that this is a play about a play, poking fun at theatrical convention, making a virtue of its shortcomings, and openly taking the mickey out of anyone investing too much energy into proselytising art
A stunning set of imaginative rearrangements, which combined with a healthy sprinkling of their own composition, stretched for over two hours.
...from the outset, a jolly thrill ride that takes full advantage of the possibilities of live theatre, presenting a classic haunted house story with a combination of impressive stage trickery and winning performances
All in all, another noteworthy collection
When You're Ready emerges as one of the most impressive and accessible of debut albums
Norwich's Nic Norton returns with another engaging and original collection
The chemistry between Elizabeth Boag’s convincingly drunk Sally and Alan Gillett’s character lifted the production just when it needed it
I know reviews are not supposed to be lists, but when the first five songs are Wall Street Shuffle, Art for Art’s Sake, Life is a Minestrone, Good Morning Judge and The Dean I, it warrants a special mention
Miles Jupp’s achievement, in bringing to life an actor known for only a handful of roles, and doing so in a way that was utterly engrossing and a complete delight, was surely all the more remarkable given the relative obscurity of his subject
its relentless pace grips and holds right until the very final spin.
tale of two lovers on the precipice of break-up
Tonight, Huey Morgan is definitely 'the man', and Fun Lovin' Criminals do what they do best – leave their audience hungry for more
His opening salvo is a warning that if I don’t laugh at the disabled guy I will go to hell
Top marks to the Norwich Playhouse for hosting this debut visit from Rambert 2. The scale of the venue, and the fantastic sound, made this a perfect evening
Erica Whyman had decided on a contemporary transfer for this 400 year old tale of family feuding, love at first sight, and crossed star destiny, but it is a darker, starker version of the classic.....
What is so inspiring about Valtýsdottir is her ability to take other peoples music as merely the starting point for what she creates
A musical interpretation of Hieronymus Bosch's fifteenth century triptych panels sounds like the kind of recorded oddity that emerges from a crate digging session at the local vinyl fair, rather than a contemporary electronic folk-jazz release.
Drastic Measures emerges from the new wave of composer-musician-producers...
'True musicians do not have a choice', he muses, 'we just have to keep on writing and performing. It is what we do'. Well evidenced at this gig
An imaginative sixty minute show created around Dickens' iconic 1843 work,
Even before the house lights dimmed the crowd had started up a chant of 'Miles, Miles - Miles Fucking Kane'
Their voices fit together perfectly and are also comfortable taking lead, usually on their own compositions. But when you listen to the lyrics of each song you realise that the inspiration often comes from a very specific source.....
Whether you are a fan of Jessie or not remains a matter of individual taste, but from what I saw and heard tonight the new material deserves a serious listen – her voice is strong and confident, and the songs are a million miles away from the frothy pop of 2011
When a band that originally formed in 1966 changes its name four times......Yet I really should not be worried
The band are currently on a celebratory tour of the UK, and Sunday night at the Theatre Royal was their first visit to Norwich since playing here in 2013.
Curved Air at The Waterfront
Pancrazi is wonderful as Prince Charming, and her parallel appearance as a maid and confidante to Cinderella in Pandolfe's household suggests a dimension of gender fluidity, adding yet another layer of duality, metamorphosis and contrast to the production
I never got to see The Smiths perform live, and Johnny Marr had packed up his guitar and left The Cribs by the time they played Latitude in 2011, so this gig at the Nick Rayns LCR was to be my first up-close encounter with the legendary guitarist
Norwich with yet another – Wanderlust - which he showcased at the Norwich Arts Centre on the opening night of his latest tour.
It started the previous night, when someone suggested that I really ought to check out The Velveteers at Bermuda Bob's Rum Shack. 'They're a bit like The White Stripes', they explained, before adding cryptically, 'But then, they're not'. I'm intrigued, but could actually do with that night in. I file the suggestion under 'poss, but probs not'.
I am unsure how the name of Eivør Pálsdóttirremained underneath my radar for quite so long
An Outline of Late Nights / Early Mornings
Four young local acts impress.
Good luck to you all.
Every one of these bands I could go and enjoy live again
An enthralling and illuminating spectacle.
One Slambovian hell of an evening
A calculated crescendo
One of the country's finest young folk singers.
A big star in the making.
The audience is totally enraptured with each song
An evening of absolute professionalism.
The vocal harmonies are gorgeous
A musical Venn diagram,
The weekend has most certainly landed.
An underground vibe in ancient vaults.
I am definitely on board.
An engaging and informative evening
A quasi-religious experience
A perfectly-pitched production
Get to know your local music scene
Big up support Misty Miller.
We are, once again, helplessly won over.
Get a bit of sausage when you can
We all by now know that there is neither an Eliza nor a Bear in Eliza And The Bear.
This is never going to quite float my boat
Gaz Coombes is no stranger to Norfolk
I really love this band to bits
Not bad at all, Eska
Contemporary folk in all its domestic glory
The performance is definitely on a grand scale, with so many individual talents on display
You see? Norwich does know how to have a good time.
A thoroughly entertaining, impressive and thought-provoking evening
A truly inspirational idea from NS&V and the library management
BK & Dad, Midnight Zoo & Claws play live
A warm and superbly talented performance
Let me laugh with you, Sean, not at you or at others.
Forty years later, again they leave us wanting more.
Compelling to watch, and to hear.
A banging good family musical with a great cast and unforgettable songs
"An arena performance but with the intimacy of a private audience"
The Boy Gedge's two bands play Norwich
The second half appears to kick off with a new-found synergy
Tonight Gigspanner spun the world thrice over.
A tour-de force
As sure as night follows day we need bands like The Sundowners.
A veritable smorgasbord of reflection and projection
Saint Julian takes to the Waterfront
A beautiful and sensitive album that is a lot more uplifting than you might first expect
An ambitious album of pretty average songs.
Addison's Uncle play on Norwich Market
This is the Kit delight NAC once again
This is indie-folk for the Waitrose generation.
Totally engaging, beautiful and thought-provoking.
Pick yourselves up, Champs, and try again.
A triumph for Peace
Like eating jam roly-poly without the custard.
A crowning glory.
Gorgeous, masterful, confessional, and uplifting.
Spotlights carve across the stage like a lighthouse on a misty night.
A truly complex talent whose fame is already set to spread beyond our Norfolk borders.