Fox Rawding is Goo Lagoon and his low-fi debut ‘Today’s Alien’ is out now. It’s the perfect soundtrack to the heady, lazy summer nights ahead.
By Jack Whitewood
We’ve been listening to your debut album ‘Today’s Alien’ in the shop today and love it. It’s great to finally get a full length Goo Lagoon release after the EP you released all the way back in 2017 which feels like an eternity ago now!
When did you start putting it together and how long did the recording process take?
I’m so glad you’re enjoying it. It really does feel like an eternity! I started writing these songs and putting demos together in summer 2017 and started properly recording it in spring 2018. I don’t know if you remember, but last time I answered questions for you guys I was telling you it would be out in May 2018 and I fully believed it! There was a lot of stop-and-start, re/re-re/re-re-re recording, complete disillusionment with the whole thing and the like, which dragged recording out right up until a week or two before I released it on Bandcamp.
I’ve had this album looming over me like a big intimidating cloud questioning my willpower for three years, so getting it out was beyond a relief. I think the moment I submitted the masters to the distributor I lost half a stone. It was like the wee I’d been waiting my whole life to do.
“It’s the end of the world – society’s tearing itself apart, the environment’s in the toilet and everybody with nuclear weapons are really winding each other up. Love, laughter, and revelling in the culture of our localities may be the only things that can save us.”
You released the album just as lockdown was announced, was that always the intended timeframe and coincidental, or did circumstances affect the decision at all?
In January this year I realised that I had about a month’s worth of work left to do on it, so I decided I’d aim to get it done before my birthday (27th Feb if you want to send me a card next year), release it on Bandcamp a month later and on regular streaming platforms another month after that. Of course, the further along I got the more of a global terror Covid-19 became, and by the time I released it we were all under lockdown.
Me and my pals all thought it was very much my style to work 3 years on an album only to release it during an actual end-of-days scenario. But I wanted it finished, and people needed cheering up, so it did sort of work out for the best.
For those who’ve not listened yet, how would you describe the album in three words?
Homemade stoner retrospective.
How have you been coping with lockdown, have you managed to keep the creative energy flowing? What’s been the hardest part about living with all of the restrictions?
Lockdown has been amazing for me creatively. Pretty early on I noticed I was spending an obscene amount of time just scrolling social media and it was making me a little misanthropic, so every time I felt the need to scroll I’d go and park myself up in the studio or sit with a pen and paper and see what came out.
I’ve made quite a lot of new stuff I’m pretty stoked about. The hardest part about the restrictions was not seeing friends and family for a really long time, but that sort of encouraged me to get out on my bike and have fun on my own – which is a very underrated activity.
The grapevine never lies. The zine is coming and I’ll be selling it online and at shows whenever they make their return. One half is lyrics, one half is fun bits and pieces made by both myself and various pals. I’m pretty excited about it as I’ve made a few zines for fun since I was about 15 and this one’s the real deal. Pull out posters and everything.
That sounds impressive! What have you been listening to during lockdown? Have you been drawn to old favourites or discovering new music?
As soon as I got the album out I had to have a full detox from any lo-fi guitar-driven indieing. A bit of a mix of old faves and brand new discoveries, but the heavy rotaters were Dr. Dre’s “The Chronic”, Quasimoto’s “Yessir Whatever”, Homeshake’s “Fresh Air”, an amazing album called “The Indestructible Beat of Soweto” and two brand new classics: Yung Lean’s “Starz” and Khruangbin’s “Mordechai”.
Special shoutout to ReptileLegit’s “Minecraft On My Mind”.
As soon as gigs are safe again, I’m planning on throwing a proper party for “Today’s Alien”, most likely involving a full playthrough of the record. I’ve been waiting to play some of these songs live for literal years, so gigging this album is essential for my wellbeing.
We’ve played some great places on the mainland and the Joiners jumps out as a real highlight, but all I can think about is how much fun the sweaty local gigs at Blacksheep Bar in Ryde were. There’s something about that narrow basement that directs everybody’s energies in the right direction. All my real pseudo-rockstar moments happened there in front of 20 people.
Do you think the arts and music scene on the Island will recover from the pandemic? Is there anything you’d like to see change?
I know all the venues on the Island have been hit hard and are likely to not see the same kind of crowds through their doors for a while, but I’m absolutely certain that when the time comes, the kids will be out in droves ready to do what they do best.
We’re blessed to have a really supportive and enthusiastic creative community over here, creators and fans alike, which gives me a lot of hope.
The only change I’d like to see is even more support and enthusiasm, more gigs and more variety, more people coming to shows, more fun.
It’s the end of the world – society’s tearing itself apart, the environment’s in the toilet and everybody with nuclear weapons are really winding each other up. Love, laughter, and revelling in the culture of our localities may be the only things that can save us.
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