RADNOTBAD: The Golden Ghetto

14 Aug

The Golden Ghetto

…….I like chain-smoking outside of cramped venues as much as the next guy but there are times when rock and roll cannot save our souls, it has been dire straits in this town for some time now in search of a new savior, The Golden Ghetto may just be it.

…….Obviously the bands in Austin are the most talented in the world, so why is it so hard to find one with the balls to say something personal without seeming abstractly disconnected from it? It’s a question I’ve been asking ever since landing in this town and still the answer alludes me. 

…….In a way The Golden Ghetto fill the hole which has been left since Harlem split up, a comparison which would be easy to dismiss if it weren’t for the fact that both bands have very aligned dynamics,  lyrically they seem to come from a similar place, and both have an instant sing-along infection without feeling contrived; the obvious difference being that Harlem channeled all things southern and The Golden Ghetto belong in Brooklyn.

…….The Golden Ghetto is the side project of David Lee (The Gory Details, Debt, The Gospel Truth) which is worth a double take in itself since the typical noise the dude creates is of the 80’s punk influenced post-millennial angst kind. It would be an easy cop-out to write these songs off in their strength as coming from a guy stripping away a rock ego to reveal a heart of scars and worth, kept hidden behind barricades of noise and distortion but that would be complete rubbish.

…….What is so concrete about their sound is how imperative it is for there to be zero ego present in order for these songs to work, if one instrument, one delivered line were to step out into the forefront the entire thing would crumble beneath the weight. It’s not the lyrics and the guitar that carry these songs, that give them form, instead it is Lee’s psyche like winding of instrument within instrument and his brilliant choice to bring in Rockyanne and her timeless voice to be the finger on the pulse of the emotion which is the undercurrent of their songs; every electric almost deja-vuish tug on our heartstrings is attached to what she is doing within the songs, it is subtle yet overly apparent.

…….Thus far the only thing tangible The Golden Ghetto have put out is a split cassette release with Gang Sign (featured last week on KRXV), a Smith’s  influenced surf-wave band which compliments TGG quite well; The Golden Ghetto are more Heart-meet-sleeve in an easily accessible sort of way though. Hopefully a full length will be on the way in the near future,  I’m pretty geeked about these early releases.

…….Live they are a five piece and, although I’m yet to see it for myself, the word on the street is that they deliver in an unprecedented way. They will be playing tonight supporting Hola beach and Gang Sign at the Mohawk.

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The Golden GhettoFacebook | Soundcloud

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The Golden Ghetto – Grow Old – mp3

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