Friday, May 27, 2016

10 Questions with Broken Gold

Hailing from Austin, TX, Broken Gold expertly blend elements of '80s college rock and '90s indie rock with modern punk intensity and great pop sensibility creating a sound that is fun, familiar, and fresh.  The band's latest release E.P. III came out in February.

This interview was conducted via email with singer/guitarist Ian MacDougall May 4 - 6, 2016.

For more information on Broken Gold check out their official website, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and BandCamp pages.

Dave:  How did the band get together?

Ian MacDougall:  The idea for BG came around 2008/09. I had some songs written and demo'ed  that didn't quite fit with my other band Riverboat Gamblers. Around then RBG's original bass player, Pat Lillard, had decided he was done touring but didn't really want to stop playing music per se. We had talked about doing something that was more in the vein of the Replacements, Fugazi, or like the Constantines or something. One summer I picked up a barback job at a place called the Parlor and worked with the owners son in law, Rich Cali. We quickly became close friends, I found out he played drums and than it all came together. Ben Lance was a close friend who had played guitar in a band here in town called Sad Accordions that BG would play with a lot. We wanted to fill out our sound so we asked Ben to join in. Over time BG started to get pretty busy and Pat couldn't give it the attention he felt it needed, in came Rob Marchant on bass, who is also in Gamblers with me.
Rich Cali ended up moving back to the east coast and BG had a short tour out to the Fest in Gainesville booked with the Gamblers. I asked if Gamblers drummer, Ian Walling would fill in and now he's a full time dude. So now its: myself on vocals and guitar, Ben Lance on guitar, Rob Marchant on bass, and Ian Walling on drums. Did that make sense?


Dave:  What’s the story behind the name Broken Gold?

Ian:  I'm not great at coming up with band names at all. When we were trying to figure out what to call this, Pat Lillard had noticed billboards and pawn shops all around town that said "WE BUY BROKEN GOLD" sometimes they just said "BROKEN GOLD, BROKEN GOLD, BROKEN GOLD". We thought it sounded cool, fit the vibe of the band and free advertising around town couldnt hurt either.


Dave:  For those who have never heard the band, how do you describe your music?

Ian:  Loud and melodic.


Dave:  You recently released E.P. III.  What’s the story behind the record?  Do you have any plans to record a full-length in the future?

Ian:  Yes! Were stoked about it too. We were working on new songs for a potential full length when we got the call in March to go on tour as support for C.J. Ramone starting in late May. As soon as we confirmed we thought it would be a good idea to have something special for this run. We tightened up what we had, threw in a Guided By Voices cover that we had been playing at every show and went into the studio with our buddy Stuart Sikes here in Austin. In one week we put down 5 songs, Stuart mixed them, Alex Lyon at the Bubble mastered them, and than I immediately got to work on getting them set up for a tape/cd/digital release. You can get the Tape/CD from us at the shows and digitally on everything else May 20th, iTunes, spotify, apple music etc. We will definitely do a full length, on what label...we do not know.


Dave:  Do you have plans to tour in support of the new record? What are some of your favorite places to play?

Ian:  Oh yeah, the whole point of the EP was to coincide with the tour with C.J. You can find all of our dates at brokengoldatx.com

There are so many places that are great to play in the world. BG hasnt been yet but Germany is my favorite place to tour. Europe in general really. In the US id say, San Francisco, Chicago, New York, Philly, New Orleans...if theres water to jump in and good food to eat thats a plus.


Dave:  Do you have any specific type of songwriting process?

Ian:  Usually we write and demo something at home and send it to the rest of the guys to give a general vibe of what we're thinking. It almost always starts that way. We'll meet up in the space and start deconstructing and have everyone add their own personal touch to each others ideas. After that there's more demo-ing and revising of lyrics/phrasing/drum parts/guitar parts. Its always kind of constantly evolving. This will go on literally right up until we go into the 'real' studio and lay everything down. Even after that some guitar stuff will change live down the road.


Dave:  What are your thoughts on the music scene in Austin, TX?

Ian:  The music scene here is so, so good. Its great to live in a town where some of my favorite bands have come from. Any walk of life is going to find what they're looking for here. Theres constantly new bands popping up everywhere, its hard to keep track. Lately I've been listening to the new A Giant Dog and Eastside Suicides have started playing again which is awesome. I used to ditch school and drive down from Dallas to play shows with Eastside Suicides when I was a kid with my old band.


Dave:  This is a High Fidelity inspired question. What are your top five favorite bands, albums, movies, television programs, books/authors?

Ian:  These lists are in no way of all time at all, I don't really have a definitive list of all time but here is what I'm currently into at the moment...

current bands/albums in one go:
1. The Church-Of Skins and Heart
I love this record, best known for  "under the milky way tonight" but they are so much more than a one hit wonder. This first record is great, power-pop with a dash of the Cure/Clash/Joy division. Very melodic up beat stuff. Highly recommended
2. Lords of the New Church-Lords of the New Church
Stiv Bators from the Dead Boys and Brian James from the Damned. Classic.
3.Twisted Sister-Under the Blade
I recently watched the documentary on Twisted Sister up on Netflix right now. I always had an affinity for the band but it made me revisit some stuff and I love it.
4.Charles Bradley-Changes
I love this record, perfect car music. Charles Bradley's story is so crazy, find the documentary on him if you can.
5. Nada Surf-The Stars are Indifferent to Astronomy
Great record and title. Another band so much more than a one hit wonder. The first track on this album "Clear Eye, Clouded Mind" is such a jam.

Movies:
1. The VVitch
2. We are Twisted Sister
3. Mad Max:Fury Road
4. Trainwreck
5. Running down a Dream:Tom Petty Story

Books:
1. Trouble Boys : The story of the Replacements
2. See a Little Light : Bob Mould Autobiography
3. Diving Bell and the Butterfly by Jean Dominique Bauby
4. The Death Of Bunny Munroe- Nick Cave
5. Already Dead-Denis Johnson

TV
1. Kitchen Nightmares
2. Walking Dead
3. Eastbound and Down
4. Quantum Leap
5. Topboy


Dave:  What’s next for the band?

Ian:  Up next...BG leave for tour with C.J. Ramone May 18th and our new EP comes out May 20th via my label Hundo Beach Broadcasts. The tour starts here in Austin and goes through the south to FL up the East coast to Canada and back through the midwest. After that we'll get to work on a new record as well as a new Riverboat Gamblers record. Busy dudes.


Dave:  Any final thoughts?

Ian:  I urge everyone to at the very least listen to the new Broken Gold E.P. if you dig it you can buy it on iTunes, Amazon, Bandcamp etc. The tape/cd version of the new ep are only going to be available on the tour with C.J. for the time being. All remaining copies after the tour will be put up for sale on bandcamp.

Other than that....keep on checking out new music and participating by coming out to shows and buying the tunes.

Tour dates and everything else is up at brokengoldatx.com and you can find us on most all social media @brokengoldatx

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