Enter: Ghostboy with Golden Virtues

Brisbane’s children of the night, Ghostboy with Golden Virtues are just about to let their debut album out of the box to make love to our ears at the Hi-Fi Bar this Saturday night… So I threw a few questions at vocalist/lyricist/spoken weird artist Ghostboy and this is how he hit ’em back!

Your debut album Enter is now signed, sealed and delivered (and ready to be launched I might add). How are you feeling about the album? Does it capture the wild and whirling nature of your live show?
 
Ghostboy: We feel extremely proud (and very hard) about our first aural infection Enter – it is a great document of where the act was at last year…being both magical & flawed. It has some killer tracks on it – we are about to make a second video for our next single Love Me  – and overall there is only a few things I would change. It is getting great reviews, in that they have clearly been listening to the album without blowing smoke up our arse (there is enough in mine already:) In terms of capturing our live show energy – that is a really huge challenge given the theatrical and intense nature of what we do live / and the feeding off, constant dialogue I have with every audience. If I Were a Rock”N”Roll  girlfriend – an old track which has been severely overhauled in the arrangement by Skye & the band – best captures the visceral raw nature of GBGV. I am personally really proud of the vocals as I did them handcuffed in a room alone direct through a guitar amp, so really let Ghostboy fuck me  to get across the line. That’s the thing – the album was recorded over 5 days in total, lots of late crazy nights, lots of wine and strange silences, and I wouldn’t change a thing about the experience, even the bits I can’t remember….
 
 
You have been working together collectively for some time now… how has the writing process changed over the years?
 
Ghostboy: I first worked with Golden Virtues in 2005 when they were a folk rock band accompanying my poetry and I was an upstart poet with this “other” raging inside trying to find a medium for “its” voice. Back then we just did it very quickly and probably to respectfully in terms of holding the poetry up as something not to be altered or responded to as part of the actual music. Over time, this has changed enormously – as has the sound – and is still evolving. A couple of key things have happened: we started to add more of a cabaret theatre aspect that required central pieces to carry a show; Ghostboy with Golden Virtues became much more than a side project / now a band in its own right separate and informing each other and it’s art lies in the point of kissing in between;  Skye and I started to write songs together including me writing far more in a lyrical form rather than just poetic – sometimes I bring a piece like Crimes already written and describe the sound / nature of the music needed…other times like Wolfish  she has a song and I work a spoken word bridge out. Skye describes what I do as “spocals” and the thing is I have had to own that I am a lead singer in the act – in the tradition of acts like  as well as a spoken weird artist. The music and words are now the same thing rather than separate entities – we are even going to try some GBGV jams in the studio with me writing improv words – got to keep pushing the mule or it will kick you.
 
 
Ghostboy with Golden Virtues have been likened to legendary artists such as Nick Cave, Bowie & The Velvet Underground. How do you feel about such comparisons? To what extent have these artists influenced your writing and performance art?
 
Ghostboy: I am not much into comparisons – they are great for bios and in reviews for reference points and for approaching venues & festivals because that is the constant language of music & writing – context to what has already been. Those three are all amazing and have done it – we are just starting by lighting the fuse.  Nick Cave has been a big influence for his fierceness and integrity and style of singing (particularly the way he has developed his voice) – Henry’s Dream was the album I thought of alot when writing Crimes (lyrics below / based on truths and myths within the GBGV community). Bowie is a massive influence on me – his sexual ambiguity, “otherness”, performance art, literary and spontaneous approach to writing lyrics, his willingness to think grand when so many want to think small & smaller, Lodger is an album that really gets me but Diamond Dogs is probably the one that I think of the most in terms of our live show. Other key figures along the way have been from so many different art forms: noir cabaret act Mikelangelo & the Black Sea Gentlemen, New York performance artist Taylor Mac, Iggy Pop (the album The Idiot was and still is a soundtrack behind the past year – we interpret Sister Midnight on the album) & The Cramps, spoken word punks Emily XYZ, and of late seeing Peaches live had a huge impact on Skye & I in different ways: for me it was confirmation that punk is still alive and for me to keep pushing it and going with live primal instinct and for Skye…it offered her a vision of the lead lady she can be, wild and unapologetic while knowingly referencing what has come before.
 
 
What can people expect to take home in their backpocket after the launch show?
 
1. A copy of Enter if said pocket is big enough and they want to sleep on something that will wake them up in the middle of the night.
2. A very small girl if they have big soft hands and a very handsome smile
3. A light in their right eye for every time they realise that Brisbane is a little looser for having us in it
4. Three great sets by GBGV, the amazing James Cruikshank solo (The Cruel Sea) and The New Jack Ruby’s  plus poems by MC Pascalle Burton & some special guests that overall will remind people that the true artists never die, they just go to sleep one day. 
 

CRIMES

Innocence is over-rated /  Blake and his lambs taken for granted
We’ll back the lone tiger, guild the girl and her white lily
We admit to the following crimes (but we don’t feel guilty)

Girls, you don’t have to fear me
I’m average in all the right ways
When I get my hands behind your bars
we’ll separate night from day                        

I ADMIT TO THE FOLLOWING CRIMES
(BUT I DON’T FEEL GUILTY)

We’ve danced on the roofs of your well parked cars
double parked in the heart of the handicap spaces
masturbated in the shrink’s secret lair
come in the hair of those pretty boy faces

Boy, even the tap doctor
can’t stop those tears
your fears / your fantasies, they’re lovers
they’ve been doing it for years

I ADMIT TO THE FOLLOWING CRIMES
(BUT I DON’T FEEL GUILTY)

CHORUS:

I admit to the following crimes
Won’t do no time
Won’t pay no fine
I think you’ll find
I’m clear of conscience and there’s nothing on my mind
I’m looking forward to the next time
I take the law and make it mine
Walk to my own beat
March along my own fine line
Oh I admit to the following crimes…

And the judge said
How do you plead?
Not Guilty!

he lost both kidneys as a teen
spleen a bible / black washing machine
shot seven men just to get too sleep
there’s a bullet in his prayers
but he still can’t weep         

your name wasn’t important at the time
we married because we could and down that street
I put the ring around her throat / but I didn’t ever squeeze
no I didn’t ever squeeze, unless she said           please!

I ADMIT TO THE FOLLOWING CRIMES
(BUT I DON’T FEEL GUILTY)

there’s a body rotting in this mangrove
there’s a dog with a bone in its throat
they didn’t come home from the night before
and the bloated lovers they float

she stole her mother’s car as a teen
took a junkie to bed but he didn’t get far
buys quarters from the ex-wife’s boyfriend
he writes the name on the bag, like their gonna forget!

I ADMIT TO THE FOLLOWING CRIMES
(BUT I DON’T FEEL GUILTY)

CHORUS

we bought hash cookies / sold stolen gear
disappeared from jobs to the faraway places
been at large on your credit card
freed the wild books from their library cages

the pink moon is arising, and so are our teeth
the keys in the lock , gonna hear us breathe
we ain’t no lawyer, we ain’t on trial
we’re at large in your closet
better turn and smile

I ADMIT TO THE FOLLOWING CRIMES
(BUT I DON’T FEEL GUILTY)

the undesirables, the jack of spades, the arse bandits,
who’s gonna judge where we go,  the lights won’t find us
the pills and trips, torn slips, the midnight stashes
who’s gonna judge what we take, who’s gonna chase us

and if the punishment fit’s the crime                  then it’s my  turn  to cry
and if the punishment fit’s the crime                  it’s your turn to say goodbye
but if punishment is the crime                              then both of us should do this time

 

Links:

http://www.myspace.com/ghostboywithgoldenvirtues
Buy ENTER: http://www.cdbaby.com/Artist/GhostboyWithGoldenVirtues
Launch tickets: http://www.thehifi.com.au/events/ghostboy-with-golden-virtues–7664/

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5 Comments

Filed under events & opportunities, interviews/artist profiles

5 responses to “Enter: Ghostboy with Golden Virtues

  1. The Charge of the Quokka

    If Ghostboy ever makes it to Rottnest Island, he’s ours. He’ll face Quokka justice.

    • The Rage of the Wheat

      Hear GBGV – who are totally quokkas – are touring Rottnest April 1st. Bring the noise.

      • gnunn

        I think Charge of the Quokka & Rage of the Wheat would make great support acts for Ghostboy with Golden Virtues… they both sound like emo nightmares.

  2. that was great, thanks. ghostboy, is very cool. love what he says and the good questions. intrigued, will have to look into getting his new release too.

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