28 November 2007

FIRST LISTEN: "Goes Cube Song 48" + an EF interview with David Obuchowski

Goes Cube is one of EAR FARM's favorite bands (click HERE to read more posts about them, if you didn't already know this) and as such, it's an honor to be able to premiere one of their new songs right here, right now. Below you can find a link to download, and listen to, "Goes Cube Song 48" - scroll to the bottom for the song and to find out where you can see the band next. You know, if you're in a hurry.

Otherwise, if you have a moment to spare, David from Goes Cube sat down with me (via IM) to do an interview about the past, present, and future of New York's #1 aural assault: Goes Cube.

EF Matt
Yo, Dr. O, first of all tell me what Goes Cube has been up to lately - I know you've played CMJ, Halloween, and a brief stint with Planes Mistaken for Stars - how did those shows go?

GC David
Yeah, and we also just got back from tour with the Giraffes - it was all really good. A real honor to play with Planes on their farewell tour, we've been listening to that band for over a decade, and in two shows they made us feel like family.

EF Matt
And what of the tour with Giraffes, where'd you guys go on that tour?

GC David
Well, we went back out to Chicago, and then we did a bunch of dates in Ohio. We also did a show in Ypsilanti, which was sort of a philosophical conundrum in that you wonder, if you play a show and no one comes, will the show make a sound? The answer is yes. And also, amps will still break. But Cleveland was absolutely insane and totally made up for it. Packed house full of people who love Black Label beer and loud rock. It's funny how those "wildcard cities" go, as I'm sure you remember.

EF Matt
I do. And I'm wondering: is it tough for you guys to play to smaller-than-desired crowds, given how much you tend to feed off of the audience?

GC David
To be honest, it's not hard to do that in other cities. You might remember San Diego from the tour you rode with us on. Not too many people were there, but we LOVE playing to anyone. And as a result, we've gotten good press. People, I think, appreciate that you just love playing and have energy. It gets hard when you play in your hometown and the crowd is smaller than usual. I mean, once you play for a packed house in NYC, you want - and to some degree expect - that every house in NYC will be packed for you...and when it's not, it can take a few songs into your set before you fully let go of that disappointment. But in the end, even practicing is cathartic for us.

EF Matt
That makes sense. And having been to all manner of your shows and practices, I can say it's completely true. What Goes Cube does, as artists, obviously comes from a place deep within the three of you that simply NEEDS to create. And you haven't let up one bit since we returned from tour in April - tell me about the news songs you've written since then...

GC David
Well, again, not to keep going back to the "remember when?" thing, but.... You remember when we were on tour? That was over a month without writing a new song and we never go that long. During soundchecks (I seem to recall Memphis being a particular place where this occurred) we'd be drinking bloody marys and fucking around with a riff here and there, but we couldn't write a new song. Add to that the fact that we're in the van for a month, listening to the heaviest possible music.

EF Matt
Such as?

GC David
Mastodon, Botch, Isis, Neurosis, Slayer, At The Gates, older Pelican, etc - and cheesy as it sounds, we're not working, we're not worrying about day to day practical shit - we're just reflecting on things and watching the landscape go by. So when we got back we were not only ready to write new music, we had all these different inspirations and influences. We got home and just went on a writing tear, and actually haven't let up. Since then (April), we've written 12 new songs.

EF Matt
Yeah, I think that what you (we) were listening to, and experiencing, clearly has come across in the new songs - they're heavier, and at times a bit more abstract lyrically. Did you find this to be intentional, or just something that came up naturally as the songs were written?

GC David
You know, we never set out to write a "type" of song or have it sound like another band. And for a host of reasons, we couldn't even approximate another specific band/song if we tried (weird tunings, etc), but clearly all of that is there. I think since we've gotten back and have been writing we ask ourselves "Can we make this more intense?" "Can we make it heavier?" "Can we make it....bigger? More powerful?" - all those things. Lyrically, it's interesting you point that out because I kind of feel like I've maybe gotten more specific and have been a little more willing to write about topics I never wrote about in the past.

EF Matt
So, as you have opened up and gotten more specific, I've found it to be more abstract/applicable to my own interpretation... funny how that happens a lot with art. For example, "Goes Cube Song 49", for me, is completely about the tour and will forever make me think of riding in the van for 5 weeks. Is how your audience will react to your music/lyrics something you've taken into account when writing songs? Who would you say Goes Cube writes songs for more: yourselves, or the "listener"?

GC David
Well, first, yes: "Goes Cube Song 49," really means the same for me. I think the tour was an important experience for me and for us in ways that I am still learning. But in terms of who I am writing for, well, I mean to be totally honest: I am writing for my bandmates. There are no other people in the world who I respect more - especially on a musical level - and so if I can bring something - musically and/or lyrically - that makes them say "Wow, that's really fucking good!" then I feel like I've done something truly good. I guess from there, I feel like, well, we like it... Why wouldn't anyone else like it? There are times when I think I've got something and Matt or Kenny will be like, "mmmm, yeah not bad" and my immediate instinct is to scrap it. If they're not completely swept off their feet by it, I feel like it must not be good enough.

EF Matt
And then what generally happens in those moments? Does the riff get tossed, re-worked, or perhaps saved for later?

GC David
We're the type of people who say "Let's save that for later", but we have never once in the history of the band ever revisited something not good enough to do the first time around. Instead we sell them to lesser bands... like the Giraffes. (Just kidding.)

EF Matt
Ha! Are there any of your most recent songs that were particularly troublesome in terms of crafting them, or have they all had their own WOW moments early in the process?

GC David
I think better musicians and maybe more patient songwriters can deal with songs that are "troublesome" as you say. With us, we don't rush anything, but if it's giving us a hard time, we move on. Really, we don't have a shortage of ideas, and we never ever feel like, "We better make this work or we won't have a new good song." Last night, we wrote our latest song completely by accident. We had no intention of writing anything new. In fact, we just made plans to record, so we had JUST come out of a break where we decided "these are the songs we'll record..." and next thing you know we go into the room, open a beer, start playing, and a riff starts taking shape, and it's like "GODDAMNIT!" We have to write it there and then, or the moment will pass, and so we did. And now we have a new song, and now we'll fight over what to record.

EF Matt
Well then, what exactly are you planning to record? And, are you planning to pair these new sessions with the four (46-49) songs you guys cut earlier this year?

GC David
Good question. I think without a doubt, "Goes Cube Song 53" "Goes Cube Song 55" "Goes Cube Song 56." Very, very likely is "Goes Cube Song 50." The question is, can we do the latest, which is 57. And if we do, then does that mean we can't do the song that is sort of linked closely with 50 (which is 54). Basically, to be very frank about it, we're waiting for a label to be willing to take all of this material we already have and put something out. We'd love a full-length. All we want to do is to keep touring and keep writing. I see this new stuff going very well with 46 - 49. There are some songs off Beckon The Dagger God that would match up, but really this new stuff is getting quite heavy.

EF Matt
Such as this new song posted here, "Goes Cube Song 48"...

GC David
Yeah, 48. This song has a special place in my heart. Aside from the lyrical content, it's one of my favorite songs to perform. There's this real stripped down lull in the middle, and it leads to what is, in my opinion, probably the biggest ending we have in any song. Dean Baltulonis (our producer) really did a wonderful job recording this track. I think he really understood what it was that we were after. (We're going back to him this time around, too.)

EF Matt
Yeah, I have to say - when I first heard the song I immediately loved the beginning. It made me think of stepping up to the edge of a lake that you knew would be cold as shit, but then deciding to just say "fuck it" and dive right in regardless. The song really kicks then, for a good few minutes - with nice ups and downs, and some honestly outstanding production work - but what happens right around 2:58-3:10... the build and explosion to the finish of the song... it's really perfect. I mean, that whole moment makes it so that this one song captures the essence of Goes Cube better than perhaps any other Goes Cube song that I can think of - it's amazingly powerful, and satisfying.

GC David
That means so much. And I can tell you, we kind of feel like 48 is one of the best representations of who we are musically and even lyrically. We're really excited to be finally getting this out so people can hear it. Live, it's usually everyone's favorite.

EF Matt
Well, it's also a terrific showcase for what Dean brings to the table for you guys too; because, having heard the song in person before hearing this recording, I can tell you that this is EXACTLY what I would've wanted it to sound like on record.

GC David
That's all Dean. He's done such an amazing job for us. And I can't wait to hear what he does with the new songs.

EF Matt
I can't wait either. So - you've got twelve/thirteen new songs written, you're heading into the studio soon... a new song for everyone to download and love (right here, right now), a show tomorrow with some good friends... anything else on the upcoming schedule/calendar for Goes Cube? Plans, goals for 2008?

GC David
Well, recording is the big thing for the sliver of 2007 that's left. Looking ahead, we're wanting to go on tour in March again - do a similar thing that we did last March - tour to and back from SXSW. Truthfully, though, we need some really killer SXSW shows this year. We want to play a lot of shows, and we want them to be good ones. Any labels or magazines out there reading this - please book us for your party/showcase! After that, a big goal for us is that we want to make it over to Europe in 2008. It's a money thing though. Again, we just want to work hard and do it all the time.

EF Matt
Well that's great - great news for whichever cities are lucky enough to have you guys in 2008. Thanks for taking a moment to chat with EF and seriously, thanks for the amazing music. Very often it's the soundtrack to my life here in NY and I truly can't wait for proper studio versions of the most recent songs.

GC David
Thanks so much for all of your support, Matt. And can I say: You were sorely missed on the last tour. Then again, you might have dragged down our band bowling average, so... maybe it was for the best? Nah...

EF Matt
Might have dragged the average down?! I roll like a limbless infant.

GC David
You should have seen the Giraffes...

Listen:
"Goes Cube Song 48"

See Goes Cube Live:
29 November 07 - Brooklyn, NY @ Union Pool w/ Jones Street Boys and Michael Leviton

*above photo from HERE.

See EF pictures of Goes Cube HERE.

Visit Goes Cube on MySpace.

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

Great interview.

I like the GC hair cuts...they look different than they did on their spring tour.

Best to you and David, Matt and Kenny!

Greg said...

i saw the cube opening for giraffes at the beat kitchen in chicago on their latest tour and i must say i was totally blown away. since then ive been hooked. just recently i was over on their last fm page and i saw i was the top listener. dagger god is a great album and the new track 48 is amazing. keep dishing out the good shit and i have no doubt people will catch on.

Anonymous said...

goes cube kicks serious ass. great interview earfarm.

Benjamin said...

holy shit fuck shit!!

song 48 is beyond words.

get in the studio. fast.

and get your asses back to Dallas. faster.

Taylor said...

nicely done.

metalbird said...

WOW @ this song

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