LIVE: The Goon Sax @ The Forum Basement, Tunbridge Wells

By Eloise Bulmer

In the basement under a pub, The Goon Sax’s show tonight is very intimate. No barrier, no dazzling lighting set up– just the band, their fans and some good music. Travelling all the way from Australia for a European tour, the band are visibly excited and a little nervous to be here. The events of the night before are hanging heavily in the air, but the overwhelming mood is of a defiance to continue enjoying live music undeterred by the bombing that happened at a concert the night before in Manchester.

Their melancholic yet sweet style of music has more of an edge to it live, despite the band seeming to hold back a little on stage. The single ‘Boyfriend’ features early in the set, and the personal, narrative lyrics are engaging, the crowd eating up every word amongst the jagged guitar rhythms. The harmonies between vocalist and guitarist Louis Forster and drummer Riley Jones’s voices sound as dreamy live as they do on record, and the talking-singing style of vocals throughout the set allow the lyrics to remain at the forefront of their music.

Towards the end of the set, Riley leaves her drum kit to sing the lead vocals of an entire song, and although she’s looking at the floor the entire time, it sounds introspective and effortless and makes for a nice stripped back moment in the set. The band also perform a number of new tracks, pointing towards the next album being full of contrasts, from heavier moments to sugary pop highs.

Rounding off the night is a performance of ‘Icecream (On My Own’ after multiple requests from audience members throughout the night. It’s a high note to end the set on and shows just how loved The Goon Sax are on this side of the world. The band thank everyone for coming out to support live music, and the reaction that’s return signifies that live music won’t be going anywhere soon.