It's fairly rare for me to get into a band after seeing them live. I'm not really taken in by a crazy-wacky stage show and it's rare to have the sound quality at a venue good enough that you can really get a good impression of a band from how they sound live. I'm more likely to find a record I love and then go see the band live rather than the other way around. I tell you all this so that you know how big a deal it is when I say that I saw Goddard play once and I was hooked. It's even more impressive since two thirds of them were incredibly sick when I saw them.
Goddard is a Worcester- based band that's a little hard to nail down genre-wise. So why try you ask? Because categorizing people is something we do here. I'd like to call them emo because they sound like they would fit right into the revolution summer with bands like Embrace, Rites of Spring and Fugazi. But no one really uses 'emo' like that anymore so I guess we can settle with indie. It's intelligent sounding, they aren't afraid to throw plenty of effects on the guitar or even the vocals (lotta reverb up in this one) and nobody's parts seem to be taking the easy ways out. There's an nice back and forth between aggression and atmospherics which puts me in mind of bands like Sunny Day Real Estate that you could just as easily mosh and head-bang to as play while you doze off.
A lot of this seems to be thanks to the guitar which veers wildly back and forth between heavily distorted crunch and single note explorations past the twelfth fret mixed with effects-laden washes of sound. The bass on the other-hand is a little harder to nail down description wise. It reminds me a lot of Chris Bauermeister's playing on the Jawbreaker records that aren't produced all to hell (cough, cough, Dear You cough). She isn't just playing 8th notes on the root, but the bass is omnipresent and driving like a root note line. And it has this nice crunchy but not to crunchy sound that you hear on a lot of melodic punk albums but without the metallic edge they sometimes get. The drums follow suit in eschewing stock beats and really pulling their weight in what is a really full sounding trio.
Have you noticed that I seem to gush even worse than usual about local bands? There was that time I said Britney's Spear was the future of punk rock (which looks biased in hindsight but wasn't I swear) and now Goddard. But the point is that these guys deserve all the success they can get and their Ep is only three songs so there's really no excuse for the five people out there who read this to not give it a listen, or if you happen to be in Easthampton tonight, head over to Flywheel and catch them live with Motel Mattress as well as another Worcester band, Tremarche (who I might be talking about as soon as tomorrow!). I'll leave you with a video from the show I first saw them at as well as a link to their bandcamp page and maybe even an mp3 here for those of you who are too lazy to click on through.
Goddard - N/S
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