Last night The Sheepdogs rocked out at the Canadian National Exhibition’s Bandshell stage, proving that they deserved their spot on our list of musical acts to see this year at the CNE.

True to their name, they sported shaggy long hair and beards, while lead singer Ewan Currie and guitarist Jimmy Bowskill sparkled in their sequin outfits.

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Scarfed 12 deep fried perogies before watching @thesheepdogs at The CNE, AND they're wearing sparkly suits✨

The band formed in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan in 2006, and they made sure they proudly represented their province with the Saskatchewan flag draped over the keyboard for the entire performance. In 2011, the band became the first unsigned Canadian band to grace the cover of Rolling Stone. The magazine aptly refers to them as “a very hairy rock & roll fairy tale.”

Meanwhile, front man Currie describes the band’s style as “pure, simple, good-time music,” and their CNE performance was no exception. Their musical style is a unique blend of classic rock, soul, retro, with an ever so slight country twang. If you took away the guitar harmonies and isolated Currie’s vocals, he would certainly be a country star.

Currie’s vocals sound so incredibly polished and effortless, as if you were listening to a recording instead of a live performance. Meanwhile Currie’s brother, Shamus, had the opportunity to exhibit his many musical talents as keyboardist, trombonist, and guitarist. He and Bowskill showed off their “Guitarmoney,” where the band had three guitars rocking on stage in an attempt to “keep up with Lynyrd Skynyrd.”

The historic venue suited the mellow vibes of the performance, with most people swaying and grooving to their melodic guitar playing. There were even a few crowd surfers, though the performance really didn’t ramp up until the end of the set.

About halfway through, Currie tells the crowd “we’re not much for rides, so we’re going to rock instead.” Not long after, he announced that they would be releasing a new album in the new year. They performed some impressive new material, featuring a pedal steel guitar.

They ended the performance with their two hit singles, “Feeling Good” and “I Don’t Know,” the latter being the one Currie refers to as “probably the first song you’ve ever heard by us.”

The Sheepdogs strike a perfect balance between the raw edge of hard rock and the clean sound of the recording studio.

Keep an eye out for their upcoming album in 2018!

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