If you’ve dusted off your Doc Martins in anticipation for The Specials playing Belsonic this summer, then the upcoming gigs by Belfast’s premier ska band are the perfect excuse to give them a practice run.The ten-piece band complete with brass section bring classic hits to the stage with buckets of energy and attitude, performing classics from Madness, Bad Manners and of course The Specials – you’ll be reminded just how many great songs belong to the ska genre.

The Belfast band have been going for ten years and they have been getting bigger and bigger crowds across the country, they have supported Bad Manners and have built a reputation of bringing a party atmosphere to every gig.Lead singer Buck Murdock says it isn’t difficult to keep the energy level so high because “the music is so good it isn’t difficult to perform”.

He said they started off playing punk songs and when they played One Step Beyond they knew they were on to something good. It’s still their favourite to perform – “Everyone knows what’s coming as soon as you say ‘hey you!’ and it always gets people dancing,” he says.

“The thing about ska music is there aren’t many people who don’t like it and even those who say they don’t can always be seen bopping their heads or tapping their feet by the end of the night. It’s a catchy, addictive feel good style of music.

“But we do like to throw in a little bit of classic punk and reggae with a twist, just to keep everybody on their toes,” he adds.

The suited and booted gang are more than a tribute act, they are the real deal when it comes to the ska, and are an act not to be missed.

Doghouse play Ma Nelson’s on Saturday 7 May (doors at 7.30pm £8 admission) and Monday 11 June.
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