Live: Personal Trainer / The Klittens / Real Farmer

Norwich Arts Centre January 29, 2024

by Paul Hammerton

Independent Venue Week sees a trio of Dutch bands descend on Norwich Arts Centre at the start of a six-date UK tour.

Real Farmer, who hail from Groningen (a centre of Dutch farming), get things under way in a change from the advertised running order.

A tortured soul? Jeroen Klootsema (Picture: Olivia Keer)
A tortured soul? Jeroen Klootsema (Picture: Olivia Keer)

They deliver high-energy punk played with real passion, and the howling vocals of Jeroen Klootsema sound like those of a tortured soul.

Certainly distinctive, they get a good proportion of the crowd moving, and their debut album out in March will certainly be worth checking out.

Real Farmer’s show comes during Independent Venue Week (Picture: Olivia Keer)
Real Farmer’s show comes during Independent Venue Week (Picture: Olivia Keer)

The Klittens fill the stage, thanks to both their affinity for switching instruments and their sheer musical presence.

The melodies from this five-piece Amsterdam band are catchy, and in Reading Material from their upcoming EP they have a tune that no doubt lodges in many people’s minds.

The Klittens are both catchy and edgy (Picture: Olivia Keer)
The Klittens are both catchy and edgy (Picture: Olivia Keer)

Much of the performance is made up of happy tunes but there is an underlying edge to their set, and with a Palestinian flag attached to a mic stand they clearly have a message to get out.

Visually, there is just so much that grabs the attention, and their set is over way too soon.

Making a point: The Klittens (Picture: Olivia Keer)
Making a point: The Klittens (Picture: Olivia Keer)

It’s not the first trip to Norwich for headliners Personal Trainer, and their visit to Voodoo Daddy’s a year ago seems to have spawned a strong Norwich fanbase – the floor is packed.

Charismatic frontman Willem Smit is the driving force behind the collective, but all members of the band take their turns in the limelight.

Personal Trainer: Everyone gets a turn in the limelight (Picture: Olivia Keer)
Personal Trainer: Everyone gets a turn in the limelight (Picture: Olivia Keer)

Abel Tuinstra catches the eye as he switches between keyboards and trumpet, interspersed with some interesting horizontal arm dance moves.

Meanwhile, a change in personnel sees the versatile Leon Harms switch guitar for drums with new member Mart Boumans managing to combine guitar with some impressive sax interludes.

The charismatic Personal Trainer (Picture: Olivia Keer)
The charismatic Personal Trainer (Picture: Olivia Keer)

Texas In The Kitchen is a standout track, while upcoming single Intangible also gets an excellent reception.

It’s the sign of a good night when it’s tricky to decide which of the three bands on the bill have provided the high point.

It’s a multi-instrument affair (Picture: Olivia Keer)
It’s a multi-instrument affair (Picture: Olivia Keer)

And it shows again how lucky we are to have a venue that’s able to attract such a quirky line-up as this.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recent Posts

Preview: Lucy Spraggan

The former X Factor star will swing by Norwich next week as she tours on the back of her seventh studio album

Preview: Hayseed Dixie

The rockgrass heroes from Tennessee will be in Norwich this week with their unique take on a bunch of classics

News: Little Angels

The news that’s likely to excite fans emerged during the singer’s visit to Norwich as part of his acoustic tour