Friday, June 21, 2024

Interview with The Goddamn Electric at Hammerfest

The Goddamn Electric was founded in January 2010. A group of four lads from Manchester, with a common passion for rock music – who decided take a journey together to restore rock back to its former glory! Taking their name from a well known Pantera song, their combination of catchy riffs, gravel-crushing vocals and a reliably solid backbone of pounding bass with bashed-in snares, always leaves the crowd screaming for more!

RAMzine managed to catch up with GDE just after the band had opened this year’s Hammerfest – Episode V ‘In Fear of the Dragon’ – at the Hafan-y-mor camp-site in Pwllheli. We talked to the lads about playing at Hammerfest, making their début album and supporting Jettblack.

RAMzine: Okay, so you kicked off this whole three day event. You were the first band to play (Thursday) on the Samurai Stage. Tell us about your journey leading up to this point.

“We played the Battle of the Bands for Hard Rock Hell (Highway to Hell) back in October 2012, up in Glasgow. It was good, good, both ways – (sniggers) we managed to get a place there and then we found out, you know, that we would be the first band on, which is um, a big thing. When we saw it we were thinking – “Is this a good thing, or is it a bad thing?” No, it has to be good! (All laugh)

[Up till then] We didn’t really do any Battle of the Bands… We sort of veered away from that kind of thing. But then this competition came up and we said, ‘It’s a trip to Glasgow, and it’s gonna be quite hyper…’

Then, later, when we found out we’d made it, we also found out that we were gonna be first on. But no matter how we thought about it, regardless of when we were on, where we were on, or whatever- we were just kinda happy to be there [at Hammerfest] and it was an honour for us to be the first band to play …”

RAMzine: Well, it’s certainly a big responsibility.

“Yeah. Well that’s it. We know a lot of good bands who are struggling to get even 20 people to a gig … so this was an amazing chance. To be opening such an incredible festival. The people here – like the sound guys and the techs and all that – they were all really, really good to us. They treated us as though it was like our headline tour, you know … This is so well organised.”

RAMzine: We enjoyed your show there’s no doubt about that! So you are going to be supporting Jettblack soon?

“Yeah, 20th April. [Club Alter Ego in Manchester] We are very excited because they’re one of our favourite bands. Not all of us were into them to start with, but we kinda all like them now. That’s probably going to be our highest profile gig so far … Because it’s almost like saying ‘We’re playing with Jettblack’ and it’s the first time people will say ‘Oh yeah, Oh yeah, I know them’.”

RAMzine: Do you think that your sound will complement Jettblack’s music then?

“Well I think they’re kinda more polished than us. Sort of, not glam, but … a bit sleazy … I think I would say that they are a bit sleazier than GDE – but we’re sort of raw … bit more edgy. So I think that we will complement them quite well.

We see it as an opportunity to impress – not only the band themselves – but all the people there working with them, you know, their promoters and that side of it, and it’s an opportunity for us… taking up some old friends along the way.

And when we first start playing, the crowd are gonna be expecting something, you know – nice and loud! Well, we’ll do just that (Laughs.) We’ll play just like we can!

Some of the best gigs we’ve been to are where the line up of bands has been from all different styles, those shows are the best. A festival like this, for example, straight after we opened, there was a thrash metal band … then loads of other different stuff. You would never put us together … but the variety is what makes it so good.”

snake biteRAMzine: So you just recorded your début album ‘Snake Bite’ – and now it’s the year of the snake …

“[Laughs] Yes, we said ‘Year of the Snake’ before realising that it actually was!”

RAMzine: But it’s the year of the water snake – you should have brought it out in the year of metal snake!

“Ahhhhh. (All laughing) We’re in the wrong year!”

RAMzine: Anyway tell us about your recording …

“Um, well originally it was supposed to take between four and five months to get the album done – that was at the start on 2012. But we really spent all last year recording it … not in the sense that we were in the studio every week, but every couple of months we’d go in to record a couple more songs …

… And it got to the stage – when we were first together – that we wrote a hand-full of songs, probably 7 or 8 songs, and we thought yeah they’re all gonna go on the album… but whilst we were recording them – and we were obviously rehearsing and writing more songs – we soon started realizing that we were changing thoughts.

We realized that the songs we were writing now, were, in our opinion, better. They sounded more together. That’s why we wanted people to hear these newly recorded songs. The style of the band had changed as we progressed. We haven’t really been going that long so we are obviously still trying to find ourselves, Y’know? So that’s why it took a little longer.

We recorded it at a place called Studio Studio in Whitworth, Rochdale – we had it finished in early December.”

RAMzine: Have you had a release date already?

“Well, the album’s kind of not had an official release date yet. You know, we’ve got the physical copies and … We knew we needed them for Hammerfest because it’s , you know, an opportunity – So we got it done for this festival, but in terms of needing to do an album launch gig …that’s not been done yet.

RAMzine: So is your band name actually inspired by Pantera?

It is actually, yeah. We all like Pantera … But it was our drummer, Gav, who came up with the name. It wasn’t even really a discussion, it was that he said ‘The Goddamn Electric’ and we were all kinda like – Yeah! We wanted something that fits. And it’s amazing, because Pantera is becoming more and more of an influence on us as we progress…”

RAMzine: We have heard your work has been compared to Velvet Revolver – Would you think that’s a fair comparison?

“Maybe. I think that the one we seem to get compared with the most – at the minute – is ‘Black Stone Cherry’.

For us that’s a bit of a head scratching one. Maybe it’s because we are sort of bluesy – we play sort of dirty- blues riff sounds. But Velvet Revolver- Yeah. We’d take that. (All laugh).”

RAMzine: What else have you got planned for this year then? Have you got any other festivals lined up?

“Yes, we’ve got LesFest in June … [28th – 30th June 2013, at the Valley International Park, Crossford, Lanarkshire, Scotland]”

Anything in London?

“Possible album launching – no that’s a thought… but maybe!”

RAMzine: Yes, perhaps you could do two album launches, that makes sense …

“Yes. One for the people we know in Manchester and another one in London. That would be great. As I say, we just really need to get on and do it!”

Thank you, Goddamn Electric!

Neil Mach
Neil Mach
RAMzine Senior Writer - With a career spanning 30 years author / journalist Neil Mach is an expert on the music business and is a reliable guide. He especially loves heavy metal, prog & blues.

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