NME New Music Tour 2006



UEA LCR, Norwich

It shows the power of the NME brand when a show bearing its name sells out one of East Anglia's biggest music venues when the four-bands on the bill have barely released an album between them.

But when the groups arrived on stage at UEA's LCR last night they were each given a hero's welcome.

The show was opened by The Long Blondes - a five-piece who hail from Sheffield, which is once again one of the country's coolest cities thanks to the success of Arctic Monkeys.

Singer Kate Jackson has already established herself as a style icon, gracing the fashion pages of several magazines - and some of the girls in the crowd last night were already copying her look.

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All the bands on the bill were fond of the disco drum beat/angular guitars/shouty vocals formula - and to be honest there wasn't much to differentiate between them.

iForward, Russia! attracted the nights first moshers and had the most energy.

It was quite apt that the next band, The Automatic, had a song called On the Campaign Trail in their set as they didn't miss an opportunity to plug their records.

Obviously well versed in music industry speak, they introduced one song as the single they were promoting and made sure the crowd knew the date their album comes out, which didn't seem very rock and roll.

They had the moves, but somehow lacked spark.

Boy Kill Boy had all the trimmings that befit the tour headliner - a backdrop with their name on it, fancy lighting and matching trendy haircuts.

Very polished, and giving a nod to Roxy Music, Muse and The Killers their potential to cross over into the main stream was obvious.

And judging by the audience reaction the NME got their choices for the tour spot on.