May 4, 2009


The nerds of Scottish indie have created an irrestible debut album, but Zoe Van Goey will still have to cadge a lift to their gigs (Chitra Ramaswamy, 26 April 2009, Scotland on Sunday)

"I couldn't be in a death metal band, or a really manly band," says bespectacled and shirted drummer Matt Brennan, stating the bleeding obvious. "We did try and do a rock tune once," recalls the shy singer, keyboardist and viola player Kim Moore, "but we never played it again." Brennan, who is the most affable drummer I've ever encountered (and the only one with a PhD in the history of music journalism), apparently tried his best to be angry but "ended up sounding like Kermit the frog".

The third member of Zoey Van Goey is Michael John McCarthy, by day a sound designer and composer for theatre and by night guitarist and noisemaker in the band. Currently in the Hague playing accordion on stage in his girlfriend's show, The Art Of Swimming, a Fringe hit last year, he is evidently the go in Zoey Van Goey. "I wish he was here to put us right," says Moore at one point when she confuses black light theatre with black magic. The band have their own credentials in the theatre too, writing music and playing onstage in a National Theatre of Scotland production, Dolls, earlier this year.

Friends of Zoey Van Goey extend beyond the footlights to writers – after our interview Brennan is off for dinner with Rodge Glass and Alan Bissett – and, of course, musicians. Stuart Murdoch produced their first single, 'Foxtrot Vandals', and Paul Savage, ex-Delgados drummer who has worked with Franz Ferdinand, Mogwai and Arab Strap, produced their record in Chemikal Underground's studio. Moore plays viola with Frightened Rabbit, lends backing vocals to Murdoch's upcoming album of girl singers, and McCarthy is set to tour Japan with Alun Woodward (another ex-Delgado) and Aidan Moffat. Not bad going for three people who had never been in a band before.

"We all bumped into each other around Glasgow University," explains Moore, who is from Edinburgh but grew up in Shrewsbury. Somehow, you can't imagine this band meeting anywhere but the learned environs of a creaky old university.

-Zoey Van Goey (Lucky Number Nine Records)
-INTERVIEW: Hinterland - Interview with Zoey Van Goey (April 23, 2009)
-INTERVIEW: Five questions for Zoey Van Goey (MALCOLM JACK, July 2, 2008,
-INTERVIEW: Sunny side on the top - Zoey Van Goey interview: Zoey Van Goey's playful impulses begin with their name (FIONA SHEPHERD, 7/12/08, The Scotsman)
-INTERVIEW: Zoey Van Goey: Michael John McCarthy from the Glasgow band talks about the soundtrack to Dolls. (Sean Bell, The Sunday Herald)

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Posted by Orrin Judd at May 4, 2009 7:42 AM
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