Goan Dogs By Sarah Gray

Bristol’s music scene is the best it’s been in years, with bands such as Idles, Casimir and Empty Pools (amongst others – ed) all flying the Westcountry flag across the UK. But it’s the underdogs on the scene which really need barking about…Goan Dogs.

Drawing upon a vast range of influences, all of which can be heard in their compelling music, from Tinariwen to Calexico through Beirut and onto Ry Cooder, Goan Dogs are wise beyond their years (they’re still all in their early 20s). They might’ve only been together for a couple of years, but these guys already sound like real pros, and are working on their debut album.

The Goan Dogs story starts in 2011, when singer Luke St Leger joined forces with drummer Dan Lane and started writing dreamy, lyrically rich desert rock songs. They soon recruited the talents of Theo Mackie (guitar / vox), Bill Sherwood (bass / vox) and Sam Kynan-Powell (percussion / keys / vox) and Goan Dogs was born.

Hitting the ground running with a jam-packed first gig at The Croft, Bristol, the lads proved an instant hit with their simple, DIY stage show and set brimming with slow-burning belters such as ‘Hold Me Back’ and ‘Dog Fight’. Their music videos are racking up plenty  of views on YouTube and the comments sections are awash with praise, and rightly so.


Numerous headline gigs and high profile support slots, with the likes of Zun Zun Egui, Kyla La Grange and Maps & Atlases, has seen them secure their place as one of Bristol’s finest new bands and 2013 is the year they hope to breakthrough – picking up airplay on BBC 6 Music with Elbow’s Guy Garvey dubbing them ‘Bristol’s finest’ and Tom Robinson also giving them a spin.

With cracking EP artwork, divine prints and tees on their merch stand and a real family vibe among their fan-base, Goan Dogs are a rare breed indeed. The band’s EP ‘20 Minutes From The Border’ is available now.

You can find out more about the band on their website, and hear more music by them on Bandcamp, Soundcloud or YouTube. If you want to keep up with their movements / future releases Facebook and Twitter are the places to go.

All words by Laura Williams.

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Laura Williams is a Bristol-based journalist and editor, working on regional and national music magazines as well as newspapers and websites – including The Fly, 247 Magazine and Virtual Festivals. Currently working as Deputy Editor of Bristol 24-7, she is responsible for all of the what’s on pages. She is also the founder of Figure 8 Festival; a new boutique festival which showcases unsigned artists alongside bigger names and raises thousands of pounds for charity each year. You can follow Laura on Twitter @lauramalarkey (expect plenty of ramblings about the Manics, Neil Young, whisky, cheese, Bristol and End of the Road Festival).


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