Image by Kalindy Williams
One small silver lining of this whole COVID business is that a lot of us, being deprived of time we’d normally spend at work or socialising, have had copious hours to put into other areas. Although it is important to note that the anxious and bewildering times that we live in have also meant that it can actually be quite hard to channel all this extra time into anything productive at all.
In any case, for some this has led to ill fated experiments with sourdough bread, or fringe cutting. While others have implemented short lived fitness regimes or meditation schedules. Some musicians have found extra time to put into their song-writing and production, meaning that we have been lucky enough to have a steady stream of new releases to enjoy throughout lockdown. These new releases have given us all something to look forward to during these times, as well as a way to connect with and support our favourite artists and musicians.
One such new release comes from Melbourne punk rockin quartet Goldminds, whose debut album ‘Signals’ is set to land this Friday. Created in the pre-covid paradise that was 2019, ‘Signals’ saw Goldminds team up with engineer Jez Giddings and acclaimed producer Michael Badger at St Kilda's Hothouse Studios to record an album of good old rock n roll. Although Goldminds only formed last year, you could certainly be forgiven for thinking they’ve been around for a lot longer than that. On 'Signals' they come off as an outfit who’ve really honed their craft, with a fully realised sound that has been executed flawlessly. Scorching guitar lines, thunderous grooves and chaotic yet catchy choruses; everything you could really want out of a punk album is all there. Pair it with a slightly overpriced Coopers Green and it is probably as close as you’ll get to a sweaty punk show in the foreseeable future.
Lead Singer Coco was nice enough to patiently answer some of FROCKUP Josh's burning questions.
Image by Aleesha Hardie
G’day Coco, cheers for joining us here at FROCKUP! Firstly, congrats on “Signals” it is so great! Did you guys record the album pre-Stage Four or did you have to find a way to work within the restrictions? Coco: G’day FROCKUP! Thanks for having us :) And cheers! The album was made pre-Covid times at Hothouse Audio St Kilda in August of last year. We had our mates Michael Badger and Jez Geddings get on board to produce and record us which was a heap of fun!
We love origin stories at FROCK UP! How did Goldminds come together?
Ooh well I guess it really started with Brendan and I who had been songwriting together for a few years. We had been workshopping lots of ideas and demos and then had Jordo join in on bass, then Nic, our drummer boy, came in lucky last. Once the four of us got jamming in a room it all came together quickly!
Classic 70’s punk sounds like a touchstone for “Signals”, but I was wondering if there are any other musical styles or sounds that influenced you all while writing and recording the album that might not be as immediately obvious? I noticed your record label shares a name with a (sick) DFA 1979 single, is that a coincidence? There's definitely a lot of different musical styles and sounds that have influenced us from your classics like MC5, Iggy Pop/The Stooges, Siouxsie and the Banshees to The Saints, PJ Harvey, Adalita... so many... the list can go on and on haha And good pickup regarding the DFA 1979 reference. Jordo being the bass player is a big DFA fan!
You guys certainly seem to have quite a cohesive and fully realised sound, is this something that was established quite quickly or did it emerge over time? Thank you! I guess our priority has always been focused on writing as many songs as we can and seeing what happens. Brendan and I have spent a lot of time over the years writing just with an acoustic guitar and experimenting with sounds after but I’d say it wasn’t until Jordan and Nic joined that the ‘Goldminds’ sound became more solidified. They were definitely the missing pieces of the puzzle! Although it was released last year, the track “Anxiety” comes off as an anthem purpose built for these uncertain times. Have you found that any of the music on the album has taken on new meaning through this period? Haha yeah it’s interesting how a song can take on different meanings over time. And combined with this year of uncertainty that we call 2020, the album has definitely allowed greater messages to come through, almost like they were premonitions! *Twilight Zone theme song plays in the background*
Obviously the lack of live music has made this period very tough for everyone, but have you guys found that being unable to gig allowed you to focus more on song-writing and recording?
Yeah for sure, it’s been a huge adjustment for everyone and it’s a total bummer not to be able to get out and play shows but there’s been a silver lining too. There’s been good days and bad don’t get me wrong. But overall this time has allowed a lot more space for new ideas to grow, having more time to reflect and to write. I have no doubt there will be some great music that comes out of artists as a result of this time!
Album art by Jim Grimwade
Image by Kalindy Williams
Words by Josh Pryor