Good Friend [EP]

Good Friend are the phoenix that rose from the ashes of Under Stars And Gutters, a great Northern Irish punk band. As sad as I was about USAG’s breakup, having discovered and fallen in love with them when they were on tour with The Lawrence Arms a few years back, the new EP from Good Friend is an absolute cracker and a fantastic sign of things to come.

From the opening chords of Dance On, Graves, you know that something special is about to happen. From a fast-paced melody rammed intro, the song breaks into the first verse and some excellently gruff vocals. While we’re not in Chuck Ragan realms of gruffness, the vocals are rightly self-assured and ready to kick ass, fitting just perfectly with the tone of the EP. There are some powerful gang vocals scattered throughout the EP and Good Friend use the punk rock staple well. Dance On, Graves has one of the best written choruses of this year without question and will be in your head for days. And we’re still on the first track here. The colourfully named Oh Fuck Off, Crazy Kev! is a two minute tirade about apathy and homesickness that definitely wouldn’t be out of place on a Larry Arms album, except it’s got a killer key change at the end that completely changes the game. Hospital Walls rounds off the EP just perfectly with yet another knockout chorus. At just under seven minutes, it’s three tracks of pure incendiary perfection; punk rock with a real sense of melody and emotion that so many bands strive for and just fall short of.

Good Friend are writing the punk rock anthems our generation sorely needs. While we’re seeing a great show of bands from across the ocean, Good Friend are one of the best things to come out of Ireland right now. Go and pick the EP up from their Bandcamp today so that they can make more incredible music.

5 out of 5 high fives!


  1. Emily
    June 13, 2012 / 3:27 pm

    The first thing I noticed is it’s kind of defensive and whiney. Lyrics seems lazy and too self involved. Vocals aren’t gruff at all. To me they sound very contrived and as a result sound weaker with less impact then if they’d been sung with some dynamics. Does this guy have to wail or shout every single lyric?

    I think they’re trying to go for the earnest epics that bands like Alkaline Trio, Hot Water Music and Gaslight Anthem do so well. But they fall miles short. Nothing here is as engaging, catchy or sincere as the bands mentioned above.

    Dance on graves sounds like a couple of wannabee Gaslight choruses stuck together. But it fails because theirs no dynamics and it isn’t as catchy as it thinks it is. By the third chorus you’re sick of hearing those same juvenile lyrics yelled at you.

    This E.P sounds like a band trying to emulate the bands they obviously look up to but failing because their singer simply doesn’t have the character or lyrical wit to match his musical heroes.

  2. Conor
    July 2, 2012 / 5:38 pm

    Fierce debut E.P. from Good Friend. Watched USaG in Auntie Annies and they blew my mind. Was disappointed in their break up but Good Friend take all the good aspects of USaG and add more and more ferociousness to each song.

    From the great chorus of “Dance On, Graves” to the heart pumping melody of “Oh’ Fuck Off Crazy Kev!”, this debut E.P. is sure to blow and Punk lover’s minds.

    My Debut rating 5/5. Cant wait for more music!

  3. mark
    July 5, 2012 / 3:59 am

    i like the part where clive found his bass drum it was good and it made my ears happy but that is a good thing cause that does not happen everyday alirght ill stop rambling no i wont i will keep doing it for an hour ok now the guitar is so good and he has a talents at playng chords my chord favourite is a b chord it has some nice notes like b i dont like c bass it good at it and i listen to it sometimes lots of the time but i know forver that they will never be as good as one direction but that is to be expected as they are the best but allright its time for bed bye see you later ok bye no deal

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