Having spent the past few months supporting Ash in America and You Me At Six across Europe it's time for Deaf Havana to come home. Not just home to the UK, not just home to headlining shows but home to Norwich, which is as close a hometown show as the band are likely to get. It's been a lovely sunny day and the crowd tonight are ready and willing to welcome the band back to Norfolk.
Before hand though we have tonight's two support acts. First up on the UEA LCR stage are The People The Poet who provide a chilled start to the evening and set the crowd up nicely for second support act The Maine. Coming over from Arizona, USA The Maine are an experienced band who already have a handful of albums to call on. There seems to be a number of enlightened individuals in the crowd that are already familiar with the band. Following a decent showing I'm sure that after tonight even more people will become familiar with them.
With the support out the way it's time for the reason everybody is here tonight, locals Deaf Havana. The venue is practically sold out and with a number of friends and family in the crowd there is a party atmosphere in place. The band have been away for a number of months and are clearly relieved to be back home and back headlining shows, with singer James Veck-Gilodi regularly thanking the audience for making them feel wanted again.
Deaf Havana are a band who have seen their ups and their downs but things are certainly looking up for them now. Since reinventing themselves following original member and screaming vocalist Ryan Mellor's departure in 2010 the band haven't looked back. In fact last year's third studio album 'Old Souls' reached number nine in the UK Albums Charts despite the apparent death of guitar music and the band continue to go from strength to strength.
The setlist tonight is mainly made up of 'Old Souls' and 2011's 'Fools And Worthless Liars' with the likes of new single '22' coming early and getting the crowd warmed up. It's a performance packed with fan favourites and the crowd sing back every word of the likes of 'I Will Try', 'Leeches' and 'The Past Six Years'. There is a mutual appreciation between band and fan tonight which creates a feel good atmosphere.
Deaf Havana are a finely tuned live act after years of touring and as the show progresses it's clear that this is a band that are all about pleasing their fans. 'Boston Square' and the geographically relevant 'Hunstanton Pier' are two personal favourites tonight, but every song is selected to satisfy the bands passionate fanbase.
The crowd are fully interactive throughout the evening bouncing, singing and crowd surfing along to the likes of 'Saved' and 'Mildred' which bring the main set to a close. Returning to the stage which has all night featured the bands name literally up in lights, Deaf Havana deliver an encore of 'The World Or Nothing', early offering 'Nicotine And Alcohol Saved My Life' and 'Caro Padre' to send their fans home happy.
It's great seeing the band back out on the road and I'm sure they will be at a number of festivals this summer, so do yourselves a favour and check them out, you certainly won't regret it. It's refreshing that guitar music can still be relevant and hopefully the bands next studio venture isn't too far off to keep their momentum rolling.