Gold Class release their second album, Drum, this month; a blistering post-punk set of snarling riffs, pounding percussion and emotive vocals, and in the process hark back to the successes of the mid-Noughties bands such as Interpol and Editors.
The Australian quartet formed in 2014 as a group of workmates and friends from a Melbourne bar and creative-writing course, creating music driven by shared views on personal politics, sexuality and identity and embarking on a number of explosive live shows and festival appearances around the world. Drum is the follow up to their 2015 debut, It’s You, and it promises a brasher, more developed sound.
The result is a record which builds on its predecessor, as the riffs feel more polished, the lyrical ideas more complete and Adam Curley’s vocals, which take centre place throughout, even stronger. The three singles open the album, with ‘Twist In The Dark’, ‘Rose Blind’ and ‘Get Yours’ a swirling blend of Evan James Purdey’s guitar work, the propulsive rhythm section of Jon Shub (bass) and Mark Hewitt (drums) and the hypnotic baritone of Curley, who carries such feeling and yearning in his delivery as he sings, “you are the wrecking ball I’ve been waiting for” on ‘Get Yours’. The rest of the record follows suit as it touches on relationships, losses and social experiences. ‘Bully’ is a taut and anxious standout, ‘We Were Never Too Much’ and ‘Lux’ are testament to the power of the band whilst ‘Places We Go’ is a beautifully reflective moment towards the close of the record.
The record’s emotionally charged core was informed by the breakup of Curley’s relationship in the week the band started writing Drum. The isolation he felt as he started writing, mixed with the often harrowing news reported on a daily basis, and the death of musicians and friends gave the record a tone of defiance and resistance. Curley wanted it to be a, “record of rage and ecstasy and endless nights and sex and dumb fun and ventures in solidarity. Not just an album of urgency and longing, but one of abandon and a reclaiming of a self beyond boundaries.” It was also influenced by Curley’s own experiences, giving it a deeply personal tone.
‘Drum’ is delivered with assured confidence, the compositions adding a growling backing to the lyrical self exploration. It is a sound that is rooted in past influences and although acts such as the UK’s Eagulls continue to explore the potential of post-punk, it does feel more indebted to the past than defining any future trends. However, this should not take away from what is a fantastic collection of tracks, as Gold Class deliver a strong sophomore record that will no doubt continue their international growth.
Drum – recorded at Melbourne’s Head Gap Studios, produced by Gareth Lydiard (The Drones) – is out now via Felte and available to stream HERE.
The band are also playing a few European dates in September, details below and tickets HERE.
Upcoming European tour dates
18 – Le Pop Up du Label, Paris, France
20 – 22 – Reeperbahn Festival, Hamburg, Germany
23 – Paradiso Noord, Amsterdam, Netherlands
26 – Moth Club, London, UK
Words: Will Sutton