Shawn “the harpoonist” Hall and Matthew “the axe murderer” Rogers make up The Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer. Catch them Saturday evening at Keith King Memorial Park when they play at the Golden Sound Festival. Photo Submitted

Golden Sound Festival returns this weekend

The Golden Sound Festival has finally arrived, and kicks off this Friday night, July 27.

Bands at this year’s Golden Sound Festival include The Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer, The Wooden Sky, Astrocolor, Youngblood, WMNSTUDIES, Flowshine, The Honey Tongues, Apollo Suns, Shiny Things, This Way North, War Baby, Frankiie, Dahly Llama, Allovers, The Steadies, Ricky Diamonds, and Smalltown Revival.

This year’s format is a bit different from previous years, including music at the Rockwater and the Riverhouse in the evenings, and an all day family friendly venue at Keith King Memorial Park.

Matthew “the axe murderer” Rogers has played in Golden before, and is excited to come through again, closing out the daytime festivities at Keith King Memorial Park at 9 p.m.

“We played Summer Kicks, which was pretty fun, and a pretty family friendly type of thing,” Rogers said. “We’re very excited to be a part of Golden Sound Fest. I’ve heard a lot about it and a lot of our friends have played it.”

The Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer are on the road, playing shows before they arrive in Golden, and will perform in Penticton the night before.

“It’s one of the few festivals this summer we’re actually heading out on the road and doing a bit of a tour for,” Rogers said.

From Vancouver, the band has been playing together since 2012. Rogers lives in Vancouver’s North Shore, and his bandmate Shawn “the harpoonist” Hall is originally from Toronto, but living on Vancouver Island in Nanaimo.

“We met in Vancouver,” Rogers explains. “Nanaimo I feel like is a really underdog town. It’s such a beautiful spot. It’s so amazing to be there in the summertime when it really shines. It’s got a lot of hidden gems and places to go.”

The duo meets regularly to practise on Vancouver Island, and Rogers is excited to get out into the other beautiful places in B.C. this summer.

“I love playing in the mountains. It’s one of the best things to play into,” he said. “In general, I’m just excited to be there and rock out in Golden to the beautiful mountains and the beautiful people.”

Just returning from Europe, the band was doing some touring and playing the Copenhagen Jazz Festival and another festival in Bristol.

“We’ve been playing live a whole bunch and touring,” Rogers said about what they’ve been up to recently.

The band has been touring their most recent album, Apocalipstick, and will play a variety of music from that album and others at the Golden Sound Festival. In the future, Rogers hopes The Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer will record a live album, and they have been working on a “reimagining” of Apocalipstick.

“That’s way more trippy and way more electronic, and a lot more out there,” he said. “We’ve been working on it for maybe the past year or so, and it’s just coming to the final stages.”

The new album will be titled Post-Apocalipstick.

When The Harpoonist and the Axe Murderer come to Golden, they will bring along the “powerhouse” vocalist, Dawn Pemberton.

The Golden Sound Festival begins Friday night at 9 p.m. at the Rockwater with local act Ricky Diamonds kicking off the weekend of music. Tickets are still available online at

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