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  • Writer's pictureEmily Marshman

FFO: galway-based punk band, turnstiles

Collage credit: @gswdesign

Photo credit for the collage: Nicholas ODonnell | Rory ONeill | LeahSickOfThis

Hailing from Galway in Ireland, Turnstiles are a punk band whose influences range from Bob Dylan to the Pixies to The Stone Roses to Girl Band. Asked to self-describe their sound, the group told This Is Galway, "Five lads crammed into a sweatbox of a rehearsal space, playing very loud guitars, intent on getting tinnitus as soon as possible." Having formed in March of 2019, the band quickly found their place in the Galway punk scene, playing house shows and pubs, and even curating their own local independent music night called "Free House." Their first single, "Moving Forward / Wasting Away," was released officially in August of 2019.

Despite being only a little over a year old, Turnstiles and their raucous tunes have already amassed a rowdy, dedicated following in their hometown. Just last fall, the four-piece won the inaugural Star Nation music competition, winning "€3,000 worth of music equipment, a recording session at Windmill Lane and a slot at one of Ireland's most popular gig venues" - the Roisin Dubh in Galway. They've more than proven that they're in it for the long haul, and that they're a band to be reckoned with.

Recently I've discovered that there's an absolutely incredible punk presence in Ireland, with bands like Soda Blonde, Bitch Falcon, The Clockworks, NewDad, The Love Buzz, and Static Vision taking the lead alongside Turnstiles, whom I discovered in the "fans also like" section on The Clockworks' Spotify page. On the Irish punk scene - specifically, in Galway - the band said: Being a band in Galway is a bit of a mixed bag. Galway has massive potential to have a really great guitar music scene, and we might just be on the precipice of that now. The talent is definitely here, as well as the innovation. You just need to look at the techno scene that’s formed in the city to see that Galway has loads of potential. What’s going on there is as punk/DIY as anything that’s happened in the last decade. We can learn a lot from that whole subculture, it’s grown so much and it’s done it in the right way.

No one's doing punk right now quite like the UK, but Turnstiles are fantastic if you're a fan of American punk bands like SWMRS and The Regrettes, bands who make noise but have enough to say that you see through the dissonant exterior that drew you in to the heart of these songs: the jaded lense through which young people view the world they're being forced to grow up - usually too soon - in.

"Tantrum," the follow-up to their first release, was released in February of this year, a tune about turning up the music and letting the garbage fire that is the world float far away. Following a string of cancelled festival appearances, the band have been fully immersing themselves in songwriting during lockdown, releasing "I.D.C.," one of the fruits of their efforts, this past April.

Turnstiles's newest single, "Same Old Stories," is out this Friday, July 17th. It's been a part of their live set for a while, and it's also the single they recorded in their time at Windmill Lane, so I'm excited to see it officially released. You can stream their music on your preferred platform, and the band can also be found on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook.

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