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A Dirty Dozen with GOLDTHREAD – February 2022

| 16 February 2022 | Reply

According to a recent press release: “Alternative rock/dark pop female-fronted band based in Cleveland, Ohio. Goldthread has taken their rock and roll souls together with their honest lyricism and catchy melodies to repair their broken pieces and create dynamic, sweeping music straight from their heart. Influenced by bands such as Pvris, Emarosa, and I the Mighty. Genre-fluid, melodic, and thoughtfully incisive, Goldthread aims to connect with other lost souls to make something beautiful out of the collective mire. Working with producer Phoenix Arn-Horn (Courage my Love), Dear Icarus is the band’s first EP, released in 2021, that tells the story of falling and having the strength to get back up.” We get female duo Lauren and Kaylene to discuss new music, influences, and more…

1. Tell us a little about your latest release.  What might a fan or listener not grab the first or second time they listen through?  Are there any hidden nuggets you put in the material or that only diehard fans might find?

Our latest release is an EP called Dear Icarus. We wanted to tell our story of being in that death/rebirth cycle as artists and tied in the myth of Icarus to do so. “Cry Wolf” especially leans into the myth motifs with lyrics about wax wings and flying too close to the sun. Diehard listeners may notice that our interlude track, “We Can Almost See the Sun,” is purposefully left very empty and ends on the phrase “how incomplete.” We did that specifically because the song comes back at the end of the album as the bridge in Phoenix. So we leave it on a little bit of a cliffhanger, then revisit those ideas at the end.

2. What got you into music, and can you tell us about the moment you realized you wanted to be a musician?

Lauren: I started playing piano when I was really young – my family is pretty musical – and more than that, I was really clumsy and awkward as a kid so sports weren’t an option for a hobby, haha. But I really fell in love with music the moment I started learning how to play guitar. I don’t know how to describe it really, it just felt like something clicked into place. It’s always come super naturally to me. I think I realized I wanted to be a musician when I was in high school forming my first little project, it just felt like, hey this is something that’s actually possible. This is something I want.

Kaylene: I had taken piano and guitar lessons when I was young, but I realized how passionate I was about songwriting when I was introduced to Garageband and started recording my own stuff. Once I realized how cool it was to layer vocals and guitars and actually build a track from the ground up, I was hooked!

3. Building on that, is there a specific song, album, performer, or live show that guided your musical taste?

Lauren: I think Freaky Friday came out when I was about 10 or 11 and I just wanted to be Lindsay Lohan’s character sooo badly – a badass rocker chick! The first time I ever played along with distortion to a Metallica song was pretty life changing too, I was like, YES, finally I can be loud and rock out.

Kaylene: My musical taste is constantly changing throughout the years along with my favorite artists. When I was younger, I was really into Coldplay. Now, I’ve leaned into some heavier music and have enjoyed all sorts of other bands over the years. My current favorite is Nothing But Thieves!

4. If you could call in any one collaborator to do a song with, who would it be, and why?

Lauren: Dream collaboration would be with Lady Gaga. Can you imagine working with her? She’s a genius.

Kaylene: Oh my god, there are so many to choose from!

5. What is your favorite activity when out of the studio and/or not on tour?  What do you like to do to unwind?

Lauren: I’m such a homebody, honestly. I like to hang out with friends and play games.

Kaylene: Honestly, same! I’m a nerd and play a lot of Magic the Gathering online.

6. How would you describe your music to someone who’d never listened to you before? What is the one comparison a reviewer or fan has made that made you cringe or you disagreed with?

Lauren: I like the idea of genre fluidity because every song we write turns out a little bit different, but I usually call us dark pop or alt rock if someone asks for a category. I think every female musician is pretty tired of hearing “oh you sound just like Paramore!” Don’t get me wrong, Hayley Williams is an icon, one of my favorite artists ever, but it’s pretty annoying to automatically get that note just because of my gender. My friend says “I love Paramore but I hate comPARAsons” and I think that sums it up pretty well. Just because it’s a female fronted band doesn’t mean that it sounds like Paramore. It just gets old and frankly it feels dismissive.

Kaylene: A quick pitch for us is we’re alternative rock with some dark synth pop elements laced throughout. And I have to agree with Lauren – over the years the comparison we’ve gotten the most is Paramore. And as much as I adore Hayley Williams and love their music, it always feels like a lazy comparison based solely on gender. I don’t think our music sounds anything like Paramore, but people see a woman holding a guitar or a female vocalist on a stage and immediately it’s the only band that comes to mind.

7. When your band is hanging out together, who cooks, who gets the drinks in, and who is first to crack out the acoustic guitars for a singalong?

Kaylene is really good about feeding the band, like there was a while there where she was making quiches every time we had practice. She’s also a really good baker. Lauren is usually the one grabbing drinks and forcing singalongs.

8. When was the last time you were starstruck and who was it?

Lauren: I feel like I’m always starstruck when I meet people so it’s hard to remember a time that stands out. Maybe meeting Yvette Young? She was just so cute and sweet, a total cinnamon roll of a person.

Kaylene: Amy Lee from Evanescence. Such an incredible vocalist and an icon in the industry. And such a kind person who truly cares about people and supporting women in the industry. It’s cutthroat and political out there and she navigates it with such a bad-ass attitude!

9. What is the best part of being a musician? If you could no longer be a musician for whatever reason, what would be your dream job?

Lauren: The best part of being a musician…I think is having music as an outlet. My songs are my therapy. And being able to connect to people through those stories and finding strength together is so, so cool. If I have to give up music, can I trade it in for being able to draw? I wish I could so badly. My dream job would be to tattoo.

Kaylene: I love being able to create. I love starting from a simple melody or a small piano or guitar riff and adding layers until it becomes a song. I’m so impressed by producers who truly understand the value of creating an atmosphere in a piece of music. It’s not as easy as plug and play and you get the vibe of the song you want. I love the process of building an atmosphere to convey the message and mood of a song you write. If I wasn’t a musician, I would probably be using the math side of my brain in a bigger capacity!

10. What is one question you have always wanted an interviewer to ask – and what is the answer? Conversely, what question are you tired of answering?

Lauren: I love being able to talk about lyrics and the inspiration behind them because I overthink everything and try to pour a lot of meaning into a few words, so anytime I can talk through what lyrics mean I’m stoked. As far as what questions I’m sick of, I think anytime anyone wants my opinion is baffling so if someone wants to ask, I’m willing to try to answer haha.

Kaylene: I definitely share Lauren’s opinion here as well. I think we love the stories behind our music and we genuinely try to put the focus on our songs and what we’re saying in them. Neither of us have been into the glory/ego side of music, so when people genuinely care about the music and put the focus there, we’re stoked.

11. Looking back over your career, is there a single moment or situation you feel was a misstep or you would like to have a “do over,” even if it didn’t change your current situation?

Lauren: There were a couple years for me where I was really heartbroken about my band breaking up – hurt worse than an actual breakup, honestly – and I just locked that part of me up and pretended it never happened and never cared. That sucked. If I could go back, I would tell myself to keep writing and not give up so easily. Even without a band, writing music is something I truly love, and to have lost that for so long was really hard for me.

Kaylene: I think our career has always been a constant learning process. There have been a lot of mistakes over the years, and a lot of relationships in the industry where we’ve been naïve about what to expect. This industry is tough, and I think being younger females there have been a lot of times we’ve been taken advantage of. I’d like to think that over the last couple years we’ve really grown as musicians and people and have gotten a lot tougher.

12. If you could magically go back in time and be a part of the recording sessions for any one record in history, which would you choose – and what does that record mean to you?

Lauren: Oooh, there are so many moments I’d love to be part of. Maybe for a Nirvana session, or anybody in the grunge era, because it sounded so different than what came before it. I’d love to be part of one of the recording sessions where a new paradigm was created.

Kaylene: Oh man! So many things I’d love to be a fly on the wall for the recording process. I think anything Glass Animals would be so cool to watch come together. The percussion and layers they can achieve are insane, and I’d love to watch that being built from nothing. I also think the guitar work in the Nothing But Thieves records are crazy good. I heard a podcast where they were talking about slowing down a recorded guitar riff to give the sound a bigger moodier atmosphere. I love cool recording tricks like that where your average listener would never assume something was going on but it contributes to the sound in such a massive way.





Category: Interviews

About the Author ()

ToddStar - that's me... just a rocking accountant who had dreams of being a rock star. I get to do the next best thing to rocking the globe - I get to take pictures of the lucky ones that do. I love to shoot all genres of music and different types of performers. If it is related to music, I love to photograph it. I get to shoot and hang with not only some of my friends and idols, but some of the coolest people around today.

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