Interview: Golden Idols - Uneasy EP

Seattle-based rockers Golden Idols present their new EP, ‘Uneasy’ – five songs that explore human flaws, laboured love and life as an anti-hero. Sixties-inspired guitars, wry lyricism and compelling drums permeate the tracks, all of which are led by frontman Patrick Broz’s brooding vocals. 

I had a chat to Patrick to find out more about the band, their musical influences and why, when met with one magic night out of a thousand, they’d rather talk about the other 999…

Interview by Annie Rew Shaw

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Annie) Hey guys! Can you introduce yourselves to our readers?

Golden Idols) Hi, we're Golden Idols; four musicians from Seattle who love to party… if by party you mean enjoy a quiet evening in front of a fireplace with a good book, or extremely long talks about unimportant subjects. (As I write this, my dog is snoring in the corner). My name is Patrick, lead singer and rhythm guitarist.  

Also in the band are: Jewel Loree – bassist, vocalist and data wizard; Saba Samakar – drummer, vocalist and swell human being; Eric Peterson – lead guitarist, keyboardist, vocalist and deadpan enthusiast

Congrats on your new EP, ‘Uneasy’. Is there an overall concept for the EP? What was the writing / recording process like?

In Golden Idols, we tend to write first and ask questions later; it's a very Freudian process. That being said, the entire EP is loosely based on themes of relationships and telling stories more authentic than most music available today. 

Most pop songs talk about love as snapshots of that perfect summer night when you lock eyes across the room and then grab each other by the hand and run from the party, and then go swimming in a stranger's pool and share a kiss that lasts an eternity; honestly, who has experienced a moment like that as an adult? Even if you have, it would be one night out of a thousand. We are more interested in what happens on the other 999 nights. We would prefer to tell the story of that same couple two years into the relationship after they have realised that one has commitment issues that reveal themselves in small, off-putting verbal jabs and the other is just too complacent to leave or even to face the real source of conflict.  

Our writing process starts with me (Patrick) sitting down with an idea; a simple line that forms the thesis of the song. In most cases, I will write the entire song in one sitting and I tend to write at my computer, which allows me to create a complete thought in the form of a demo including ideas for harmonies, and even other instruments. I then bring the song to the band and we play through it together. 

In the course of this process, a song may sound reasonably similar at the end or go from a country song to a punk song with Motown harmonies. This process of collaboration is often the collision point of influences that helps our music become an amalgamation of several different periods and styles.  

By the time we record a new track we will usually have played the song extensively and demoed it as a group; we reserve very little time for writing in the studio. Generally, we track drums, bass and guitar/keys live. We then record vocals and any additional instruments, and, in whatever time left in the day budgeted for tracking, we experiment with ideas that came up during the previous days of recording. What then follows is multiple days of listening to the same songs hundreds of times until everything is as right as we can get it.  

What’s your favourite track from the EP and why?

Our favorite track as a band is ‘Nobody Else’ quite simply because it is the most fun to play. That said, as a writer and satirist, I most enjoy ‘Uneasy’. There are deep currents of meaning running through that song for anyone who cares to look, but also catchy hooks that would allow it to be at home on any dance floor.  

Who are your biggest musical heroes?

My biggest influences as a writer would have to be The Modern Lovers, ELO and Roy Orbison, but I have also been heavily influenced by groups like The Chiffons, The Ronettes and The Crystals. My musical playlist tends to be a little manic; I put my music library on shuffle and in a very short span, it might go from a Khmer rock classic from Pan Ron to some Scandinavian metal (like Disfear or Kvelertak), to some French or British electropop (like Petite Meller, L'Impératrice, Hot Chip or Metronomy). 

Recently I’ve been adding some German-language groups like Bilderbuch and Von Wegen Lisbeth into the mix as well. I like everything, and everything goes into the music we write.  

If you could play a show anywhere in the world, where would it be?

Honestly, we are happy to play anywhere there are people who want to see us and hear our music, but we would love to come to Britain someday.   

What’s coming up next for Golden Idols?

We’ve already begun work stitching together the tracks for a new EP. We will be experimenting with some new influences (including some influences from seminal Britpop groups like Blur and Pulp) and new recording techniques. Keep your ears open for more releases and videos coming up soon.