Seattle based rock band My Goodness will release their new full-length album titled Shiver + Shake on June 24 via Votiv Music. The thirteen track record was recorded and produced by esteemed Seattle producer Rick Parashar (Pearl Jam, Alice In Chains, Blind Melon) at London Bridge Studio.
Consisting of singer/guitarist Joel Schneider and drummer Andy Lum, My Goodness formed in Seattle in 2008 and quickly took the Northwest by storm with their feverish concoction of blues-infused rock. The duo spent years honing their songwriting and playing to growing crowds with bands like Bosnian Rainbows, The Thermals, The Cave Singers and Augustines; all of which has led to this pivotal, career defining moment, the release of their new album, Shiver + Shake.
My Goodness’ connection to the Seattle music they grew up on is strikingly audible. Bands from Nirvana and Soundgarden, to bands from the early ’00s Seattle scene such as Botch, Blood Brothers, Murder City Devils and Harkonen were on heavy rotation for Schneider and Lum throughout their formative years. Dig deeper still and you find them tapping into a rich seam of blues, old and new – from Muddy Waters through Junior Kimbrough and RL Burnside to the musical sass of Jon Spencer Blues Explosion. Though a very different prospect, the energy, intensity and attitude of hardcore and the groove of the blues feeds into everything My Goodness does. Ultimately it’s all rock music though. Big throbbing rock music.
In the spring of 2014, My Goodness enlisted the help of friend and local Seattle musician Cody Votalato (The Blood Brothers, Jaguar Love) who joined them as a part time member on bass guitar for their first full U.S. tour. Votalato will continue performing live with the band when possible.
Ghettoblaster recently caught up with the band to discuss their forthcoming effort. This is what they said.
When did you begin writing the material for Shiver + Shake?
Joel: ten of the 13 songs on Shiver + Shake were written throughout 2012-2013. Beyond that there were a few tunes from our initial record in 2011 that we decided to re-work. We felt like since the record was only on shelves and Itunes for such a short time, that a few songs didn’t really get their due. It was nice to be able to give them another shot and be able to develop them a bit more before recording.
What was the most difficult song to take from the initial writing stage through recording and mixing? Why was it so troublesome?
Joel: I think the title track (“Shiver + Shake”) and “Sweet Tooth” were both tough because the time between completing the song and jumping into the studio to record them was so short. We had a lot less time to perform them live or get really comfortable with them. Fortunately, I think we work pretty well under pressure and were able to end with a finished product we are really happy with.
Which of the songs on the record is most different from your original concept for the song?
Andy: “Cold Feet Killer” is one that I’m especially proud of. It’s one of the older My Goodness songs and really took a collaborative effort to get the finished product. I think we went through at least three to four different structures for that song until we found something we all really liked. It can be difficult working through restructuring songs because it messes with your head as you’re tracking and slows down the workflow. The struggle is worth it though, the finished tune came out sounding way stronger and fits perfectly on the record.
Did you have any guest musicians play or sing on the record?
Andy: We had some fantastic musicians play on the album. Our friend Cody joined on bass at the end of the recording process and helped us finish our two favorite songs on the record. We had a guest organist who added some great parts to a couple of songs. We wanted to go all out with production on this record, and it’s been fun to evolve our live show to match what we created in the studio.
Who engineered and /or produced the record? What input did that person/those people have that changed the face of the record?
Andy: We worked with Rick Parashar at London Bridge Studios on this record. It was really cool to work with Rick because he started London Bridge with his brother Raj and produced a lot of amazing grunge records there (Pearl Jam – Ten, Temple of the Dog, among others). He has a fundamental understanding of making rock records that sound raw and live, which is what we wanted to capture when making this record. It was really good for our creativity to work with someone who wanted us to track live without a click track, it captured the intensity of our live show but with a polished approach to the sounds. The thing we worked on the most was structure. Growing up listening to a lot of math rock and hardcore, we came to the table with a ton of musical ideas and Rick was able to help us structure those to make complete songs we are really happy with. Christian, our mixing engineer – he brought it all together and made it sound huge.
Is there an overarching concept behind your new album that ties the record together?
Joel: The majority of the songs were written over a somewhat tumultuous period for the band and my personal life. If there was a premise or concept, it was to use the music as a way to shake off the things that were setting me back and to put that time behind me. Thus the album title, Shiver + Shake.
Have you begun playing these songs live and which songs have elicited the strongest reaction from your fans?
Andy: Definitely, we played most of the songs from the new record on the U.S. tour we just finished with Augustines. “Hot Sweat” is the one we usually close with and is one of my favorite songs on the record and my favorite to play live. It’s probably the heaviest song on the record and we tend to leave it all on stage with that tune, I think people have a lot of fun with it.
(Download “Cold Feet Killer” and watch the new video now at Purevolume.com: http://bit.ly/1l2lBCM
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