The Hoosiers at Waterfront Studio: not so goodbye Mr A

Ten years after the release of their debut album ‘The Trick to Life’, the remaining two members of The Hoosiers (with two other musicians) played the upstairs of The Waterfront Norwich, a small venue that holds up to two hundred people. Unsurprisingly, tickets sold out due to the earlier successes of The Hoosiers, and this guaranteed a good atmosphere. Their simplistic set seemed reminiscent of the comic book inspired superhero music video for ‘Goodbye Mr A’, with four vertical banners of red, green, blue and yellow. They donned their merchandise, four t-shirts each matching a different banner and they all had slightly different scenes on their fronts.

Beginning with ‘Worried about Ray’, they played the entirety of their number 1 album enthusiastically. ‘Goodbye Mr A’ was certainly the favourite amongst the crowd with everyone singing their hearts out, followed by ‘Cops and Robbers’ and

‘The Trick to Life’. Applause erupted each time the keyboardist brought out his trumpet for a solo. Irwin Sparkes and Alan Sharland’s awkward anecdotes and banter in between songs gave rise to a few chuckles.

Their encore was composed of hits from their latter three albums (‘The Illusion of Safety’, The News from Nowhere’ and ‘The Secret service’) and covers of ‘Can’t Feel My Face’ by the Weekend and ‘We Didn’t Start the Fire’ by Billy Joel. Although not songs that you would usually see performed together,  it somehow worked after the band gave them both makeovers. For a relatively young crowd a surprising number knew the words to the eighties classic.

It was definitely a worthwhile trip to the waterfront, and  I would love to see The Hoosiers again playing a larger venue for an even better atmosphere.


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Molly Bates Porter